Green Committee

 Up coming events:

The Green Committee is hosting a movie night on Friday March 22nd starting at 7 pm.  The adults will be watching Food Inc. in the Vestry and the kids will be watching Wall-E in the Chapel.  We will have popcorn, juice, wine, and cheese.  Also feel free to bring your own wine as well.


8 Eco-Friendly Ways to Wrap Gifts With Newspaper


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Green Tips:

Many of the Green Tips that we provide come from the Ideal Bite web site - check it out! If you sign up they’ll send you a quick

Looking for ways to cut your home energy costs? Try some (or all!) of these:

  • Set the dial on the water heater only as high as you need it-about 120 degrees or "warm".
  • Insulate your hot water pipes with inexpensive foam wrapping.
  • When you replace your water heater, buy the most efficient one available, and don’t buy one with more capacity than you need.
  • Consider buying an "on-demand" heater, which only heats up the water as you need it. [posted 2/19/10]

How much water do you use in your home each day? More than think! In fact, the average American uses around 110 gallons of water every day! Conserving water is important for the environment, and it’s easier than you might think. (Part 1)

  • Use a dishwasher-they are more water-efficient than hand washing.
  • Use "old" water (melted ice, pasta/veggies) to water plants.
  • Use as little water as you can during cooking, and use the smallest pans you can.
  • Keep pots tightly covered to ensure water doesn’t boil away too fast.

How much water do you use in your home each day? More than think! In fact, the average American uses around 110 gallons of water every day! Conserving water is important for the environment, and it’s easier than you might think. (Part 2)

  • Run the washing machine only when you have a full load, and skip the extra rinse cycle.
  • Got a leaky faucet? Repair that drip and you’ll save hundreds of gallons every year.
  • Choose showers or baths and limit your showers to 5 minutes or less. Even better-install a low-flow showerhead which will significantly reduce how many gallons your shower uses every minute.
  • Turn the water off while shaving or brushing your teeth.
  • Redoing your bathroom? Update your toilet. New toilets use just 1.6 gallons per flush-that can make a difference of up to 15,000 gallons a year! [posted 12/23/09]

If you have unused anti-virals, anti-fungals or TB medicine, contact the Starfish Project (, which will send them to clinics in Nigeria. They’ll send you a prepaid shipping label to make it even easier.

Odd as it may sound, you can recycle all those old broken crayons! There’s an organization that will melt them down and re-mold them into new ones. Leave the labels on, and check in with the National Crayon Recycle Program ( to find out where to send them.

Stick to the speed limit when you drive-and don’t floor the accelerator! For every five miles per hour over 60 you drive, you’ll lose around 1/5 of your car’s efficiency. That’s like paying 24 cents more per gallon of gas. The same goes for rapid acceleration, which can also significantly reduce your gas mileage. Also, keeping your tires properly inflated will gain you 3% more fuel efficiency.

Pick up some power strips for your electronics and turn off the switch when you turn off your TV, computer, DVD player, stereo, etc. These items in our homes consume electricity when they’re plugged in and turned off! Using a smart power strip will save electricity by ensuring the power stops at the strip.

Got stuff to get rid of that’s too good to go in the trash? Try Freecycle! The Freecycle Network™ is made up of 4,619 groups with 6,059,500 members across the globe. It's a grassroots and entirely nonprofit movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns and thus keeping good stuff out of landfills. Membership is free, and everything posted must be free, legal and appropriate for all ages. To view the items being given away or sought you must be a member of the local group. Log into, put in your city and state, and you’ll be linked to the local group. You’ll need to join the Yahoo group, but if you don’t have a Yahoo ID, it only takes seconds to set up. (One church member just used it to get rid of a bunch of toys - they were gone within two days!)

Are you planning a home improvement project? Use green-friendly materials. For a deck, consider using Trex building material instead of lumber. According to the manufacturer, Trex is made primarily with recycled plastic grocery bags, reclaimed pallet wrap and waste wood. It contains no toxic chemicals and combines the best features of wood and plastic.

Do you buy less to save more? Time that is…..The express line might save you a couple of minutes right now, but if you fill up your cart, and later your fridge, you’ll make fewer trips to the store and save cash, energy, and hours in the process-showing less isn’t always more. Why? Half the pollution it takes to transport your food comes from your drive to and from the store, your fridge and freezer are more efficient when you pack them full (but with air to breathe) and you’ll save cash on electricity and your gas bill. (

Doing more than your share of singing in the shower? Not sure? See how much time you spend between getting in and toweling off, then by shaving off 30 seconds. For every 30 seconds you shorten your shower you’ll save up to fourteen gallons of water. Using less water means less water goes through wastewater treatment plants and drinking water systems-which spend about $4 billion each year to treat water. Need some tips? Time yourself with an egg timer or stopwatch or put the stopper in the tub and you’ll see just how much water you use. (


Report from the Mass Interfaith Power and Light Energy Audit (February, 2007)


Contact Info

First Parish Church
2 Westford St
Chelmsford MA 01824