Lovers of tech and gadgets, and outdoors-men like hikers and backpackers don’t often mix and match. The techies lament the lack of a power outlet deep in the woods, while most nature-loving campers dislike having too much tech at their disposal and are more inclined to play card games or board games when they’re bored.
Enter the BioLite CampStove, a mildly successful attempt to merge the best of both worlds by making a backpacking stove. This isn’t your ultralight backpacking stove that’s light and easy to carry while you hike, this is more of a camping stove that people are going to bring along car camping.
Whether directly or indirectly, intentional or unintentional, through negligence or even with due diligence, humans are especially skillful at creating disasters, a truth that is quite evident throughout history. As follows are but some of the worst man-made environmental disasters in history.
With gas prices beginning to move up this summer and higher prices at the grocery store, every penny counts. My family has found some great ways to conserve energy and save money for our home.
In order to keep our electricity bill lower we wash our clothes in cold water and hang them to dry as much as possible. We do this every day it is not raining. If there is rain forecast for a specific day I will make every effort to get the laundry done around that day so that there is never a need to use the dryer. At last check our electric bill had gone down by $40 per month by just this alone. As I thought about that lower bill I wandered around our home and came up with even more ideas to reduce the cost of electricity.
On a nice evening we will often barbeque rather than use the oven. We also utilize the microwave oven and the stove top. I don’t have exact numbers on how much this lowered the bill but it was enough for us to continue the trend. The kids really enjoy bar b quing and the family time we spend with it.
I noticed that the computers (4 in all) and the coffee pot were always plugged in or on. As were the various clock radios around the house. I did some research on the Internet and read that even though we are not using these appliances, they are still sucking up electricity. Those little LCD clocks on them are still displaying aren’t they? I unplugged them after that if they were not in use. I also unplugged anything else that I found not in use including the electric can opener.
No one likes to wash dishes around here, but I hate running the dishwasher and using so much hot water and electricity. The solution? I only run the dishwasher when it is completely full (you’d be surprised how much you can get in there just by a simple rearrangement) and I use the economy setting and let them air dry. Again more savings.
In the summer I open the windows at night and take advantage of the cooler air. In the mornings when it starts to heat up outside I close the windows and shut any blinds that are on the sunny side of the house. I also utilize some ceiling fans and other fans to keep the cooler air circulating throughout the house. When it is over 90 outside we will still use the Air Conditioner but by utilizing these techniques our electric bill has dropped dramatically.
Though my family has a ways to go to be perfect energy savers, we are well on our way to great conservation. Our electric bill has been lowered by almost $100 per month over the last year. I wonder how much lower we can get it by simply paying attention to what we are doing as well as shutting off the lights when we leave the room.