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Saving the Planet One Story at a Time
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From The Airwaves
06Oct
2010

Enviro Girl airs weekly on Sundays at 10:30 AM on TVO.

If kids are the future, then isn’t it time we start educating them on making smart choices for a healthy planet?

TVO is a great place for safe, educational and entertaining programming for children up to 12 years old, and home to one of our favourite popular, longstanding kids shows: The Incredible Adventures of Enviro Girl.

It’s a bright and shiny weekly lesson on living green, an enthusiastic delivery of environmental tips, as well as basic lessons and tools to change the way kids and their parents live and care for the environment.

This caped crusader looks a lot like our own GreenHeroes (though her cape and tights are pink!), and boasts the same message as our green duo – small actions add up to big change.

She might seem like a kids-only deal, but Enviro Girl covers topics that we at GreenHeroes take seriously too. Past episodes have included “The Three R’s”, “Drink Tap Water”, “Plastic Bags” and “Vampire Power”, a topic close to Stuart Hickox’s heart (as he explains in his guest blog).

After all, it was Stuart Hickox and One Change who reminded us that simple actions matter, so why not indulge in an episode of Enviro Girl which provides kids (and hopefully their parents too) with the tools, enthusiasm, and desire to change the way they act and think big for the future environmental solutions.

Remember – in the battle to save the planet, simple actions matter: What simple actions are you taking to help the environment? How are you acting locally to affect global change? Do you know someone who is a small change agent in your community? Share your story here for your chance to win a prize in our contest!

GreenHeroes.tv is all about saving the planet, one story at a time. Do you have a great story to tell about how you’re helping to make the world a greener place? Enter the contest to nominate a friend or yourself – you could be one of Canada’s next GreenHeroes!

Watch and learn about our celebrity GreenHeroes

Read our blog to keep up-to-date on GreenHeroes Campaigns

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Simple Changes Matter to your pocketbook as well!

Stuart Hickox and the team at One Change remind us that there are easy shifts we can make in our lives and in our homes to not only save energy, water and fuel, but these shifts can save us some of our hard-earned money.

We at GreenHeroes work diligently in our own lives and homes to conserve. Here are our five favourite tips from One Change to conserve, conserve, conserve – because, Simple Changes DO Matter.

Get the junk out of your trunk!

Remove unnecessary excess weight from your car, like sports equipment or a roof rack not in use, and you could save up to $50 in fuel per year.

Air dry your laundry

Did you know that your clothes dryer is the second biggest electricity-using appliance in your home (after the refrigerator)? Why not air dry your cloths on a clothesline or drying rack to save as much as $100 on your electricity bill each year?

Stay cool with a ceiling fan

(Incredibly relevant, as many of us just experienced one of the hottest summers on record!)

Instead of A/C, consider installing an ENERGY STAR-qualified ceiling fan, which can cost as little as 10 cents a month in energy. You can even save money in the winter.

Reverse the direction of your ceiling fan motor so that cool air is pushed up towards the ceiling, drawing warm air down into the room.

Rather than cold floors and warm ceilings, you’ll have a more even temperature throughout the room. Now, can your air conditioner do that?

Fill up [your car with fuel] at least 3 days before a holiday

(With Canadian Thanksgiving just around the corner, this tip is very timely!)

To avoid the price bump!

Install a low-flow shower head.

A typical shower can use up to 25 gallons of water. A low-flow shower head can cut that by 50-70%. (And why not increase that efficiency by showering with a friend?)

Remember – in the battle to save the planet, simple actions matter: What simple actions are you taking to help the environment? How are you acting locally to affect global change? Do you know someone who is a small change agent in your community? Share your story here for your chance to win a prize in our contest!

GreenHeroes.tv is all about saving the planet, one story at a time. Do you have a great story to tell about how you’re helping to make the world a greener place? Enter the contest to nominate a friend or yourself – you could be one of Canada’s next GreenHeroes!

Watch and learn about our celebrity GreenHeroes

Read our blog to keep up-to-date on GreenHeroes Campaigns

Sign up for our newsletter

Follow us on Twitter

Become our fan on Facebook

Stuart’s not willing to sit still on conservation. He told us himself in his guest blog that he’s got bigger and brighter ideas. He also tweeted about it on September 20, 2010: “Suddenly, I’m Mr. Power Bar. Nice to be recognized as ‘the man who introduced Compact Fluorescent (CFL) bulbs to Ottawa’ but that’s so 2008.”

He’s referring to a great article about his work in the Ottawa Citizen that offers other ways to reduce energy, and his message is clear: it’s not just about the bulbs. It’s about the actions and the future steps we continue to take to impact change.

One Change has come a long way since it handed out the first light bulb in 2006, but their latest project uses the same innovative method of community engagement. The fuel efficiency initiative is a neat project that visits various community hotspots and hands out miniature fuel gauges to the public, to encourage them to measure their tire pressure.

We didn’t realize the impact tire pressure can have on the amount of carbon we emit, but the numbers are quite dramatic: due to low tire pressure, Canadian drivers waste enough fuel each year to fill 257 Olympic sized swimming pools. 23% of vehicles have at least one tire under-inflated by more than 20%, and 70% of vehicles have at least one tire with an inflation problem.

Don’t panic, because we’ve got some good news: with the help of loads of volunteers, the initiative has already distributed nearly 20,000 gauges. They’re also encouraging us to save fuel in other ways. Want one yourself? Pick up a tire gauge at a local event. Want to take another action? Visit our Simple Changes Matter campaign page.

Psst! Here’s how-to check your tire gauge:

1. Pick up a tire gauge and keep it handy (how about on your key chain?)

2. Find the proper tire pressure for your vehicle (found in the owner’s manual)

3. Find an air pump, such as those found at gas stations (usually for free!)

4. Remove the small cap on your tire’s air valve and press tire gauge onto the valve (this is where the “Psst!” comes into play – it’s a sound you might hear)

5. Compare – is your current tire pressure matched to the manual suggestion?

• too low? Pump it up

• too high? Release some air

6. Follow all the steps for each tire

Remember – in the battle to save the planet, simple actions matter: What simple actions are you taking to help the environment? How are you acting locally to affect global change? Do you know someone who is a small change agent in your community? Share your story here for your chance to win a prize in our contest!

GreenHeroes.tv is all about saving the planet, one story at a time. Do you have a great story to tell about how you’re helping to make the world a greener place? Enter the contest to nominate a friend or yourself – you could be one of Canada’s next GreenHeroes!

Watch and learn about our celebrity GreenHeroes

Read our blog to keep up-to-date on GreenHeroes Campaigns

Sign up for our newsletter

Follow us on Twitter

Become our fan on Facebook

GreenHero Stuart Hickox is the founder and President of One Change. What moved Stuart to action was a feeling of anxiety that many of us can relate to, a sense that some environmental issues and disasters feel too big to tackle.

But Stuart’s story is one of transformation, as his light bulb moment led him to quit his job in marketing and to take on One Change as a full-time project. Shortly before founding the organization, Stuart was already busy planning his first major campaign: Project Porchlight.

Project Porchlight and the new fuel efficiency initiative are such simple ideas, and that’s why Stuart’s an inspirational GreenHero to us. His campaigns hand us the tools to take action, so that each of us can transform our thoughts into action.

Stuart took time out of his busy campaign schedule to send us his personal thoughts on moving beyond the light bulb, because though these actions may be small, millions of them put together can have huge reverberations.


Frankly, at One Change, we were getting tired of talking about light bulbs anyway. Vampire Load is so much sexier.

Buffy may be off the air, and I’m not buff enough to cameo on True Blood, but I’m welcoming the opportunity to represent One Change not as “the bulb guy” but as “the Slayer.”

Did you know that 15-20% of household energy use is power that is consumed by stuff that’s turned off?

All day, every day, a little trickle of power is being sucked from items like cell phone chargers, TVs, computers – yes, even when they are turned off!

You can slay Vampire Load by installing a power bar. Just turn it off when you’re done. Or install a smart power bar like “Trickle Star” that automatically turns off secondary devices like the DVD player when you turn off the TV. Fight Vampire Load and you can save up to $200 per year. Easy! Now I just need to practice my pout and start wearing all black.

Psst! If hunting Vampires isn’t your thing, consider checking your tire pressure. Or, better yet, volunteer to hand out some of the 150,000 digital tire pressure gauges One Change is distributing across Ontario this fall with Canadian Tire. Checking pressure regularly can help you save up to $60 per year on gas, cut emissions, and helps prevent accidents.

And, well, if you don’t have a car, you can still replace those wasteful incandescent bulbs…Simple Actions Matter!

Stuart Hickox, Founder and President of One Change


Remember – in the battle to save the planet, simple actions matter: What simple actions are you taking to help the environment? How are you acting locally to affect global change? Do you know someone who is a small change agent in your community? Share your story here for your chance to win a prize in our contest!

GreenHeroes.tv is all about saving the planet, one story at a time. Do you have a great story to tell about how you’re helping to make the world a greener place? Enter the contest to nominate a friend or yourself – you could be one of Canada’s next GreenHeroes!

Watch and learn about our celebrity GreenHeroes

Read our blog to keep up-to-date on GreenHeroes Campaigns

Sign up for our newsletter

Follow us on Twitter

Become our fan on Facebook

A few years ago, Stuart Hickox came across a statistic on the Internet that made him realize that if everyone made a small change, the aggregate effect would be very large and for the better:

“If every American home replaced just one light with a light that’s earned the ENERGY STAR, we would save enough energy to light 3 million homes for a year, save about $600 million in annual energy costs, and prevent 9 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions per year, equivalent to those from about 800,000 cars.”

EnergyStar.gov

He shared this statistic with friends and family, and asked them a question:

“How hard can it be to get everyone to change one light bulb?”

This question became a call to action and One Change was formed. Learn more about them and Stuart’s efforts by reading our blog post from yesterday.

Did you act on an epiphany like Stuart did? Are you making simple changes in your life and showing others how to take those same steps too?

We want to hear about your moment of inspiration: enter our contest, or nominate a friend, for a chance to win a GreenHeroes prize and be featured on our contest website. You may even end up having your story told on TVO!

GreenHeroes.tv is all about saving the planet, one story at a time. Do you have a great story to tell about how you’re helping to make the world a greener place? Enter the contest to nominate a friend or yourself – you could be one of Canada’s next GreenHeroes!

Watch and learn about our celebrity GreenHeroes

Read our blog to keep up-to-date on GreenHeroes Campaigns

Sign up for our newsletter

Follow us on Twitter

Become our fan on Facebook

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