Residents

What Mercer County Residents Can Do

We invite you to join with us to create a greener Mercer County.  Check out the following suggestions will help you to save $$$ and do your bit for the environment.

Inside the Home

  • Get a home energy audit and act on as many of the recommendations as you can afford.
  • Adjust your thermostat to reduce energy use.
  • Change your lightbulbs to LEDs and save $ AND energy.

Home Landscape

  • Remove some of your lawn and plant a garden
  • Eschew chemicals in your yard maintenance.
  • Grow a vegetable garden
  • Leave your grass clippings on your lawn.
  • Leave your leaves on your own property.  Chop them up with a mulching mower and put them in your garden beds where they will break down naturally and add nutrients and organic matter to your soil.
  • Plant and preserve trees in your neighborhood. They help minimize the damage caused by surface runoff and remove carbon dioxide from the air.

Transportation

  • Walk or bike to your destinations whenever possible.
  • Utilize mass transit or carpool for longer destinations.
  • Consider a vehicle with better gas mileage and lower emissions.
  • Stop idling in your car! Idling for more than 3 minutes is prohibited in New Jersey if your vehicle is not in motion.

Water

  • Save water with rain barrels.
  • Put in a rain garden to minimize storm water runoff.
  • Don’t waste water!  Turn off the faucets while brushing your teeth until needed.
  • Skip the bottled water.  The Pacific Institute estimates that it takes 3 liters of water to manufacture a one liter bottle of water.  Eschewing bottled water has the additional benefit of reducing the amount of plastic in the waste cycle.
  • Become a Certified River-Friendly Resident
    The River-Friendly Certification Program, a partnership of The Watershed Institute, the New Jersey Water Supply Authority, and the Raritan Headwaters Association, promotes clean water and a healthy environment through voluntary action by individuals and institutions. The program works to reduce pollution, conserve water, restore habitat for wildlife and educate the public about becoming better environmental stewards.

Dispose of your disposable lifestyle habits

  • Freecycle – don’t buy new – pass things around!
  • Opt out of the catalogs you receive that you didn’t ask for with CatalogChoice.org and start your own waste prevention initiative.
  • Share magazines and newspapers. Recycle them when done.
  • Use your own coffee mug at work or on the go instead of disposable cups.
  • Buy food packaged in paper instead of foam trays.
  • Bring your own containers when shopping for bulk products in the supermarket.
  • Bring your own reusable bag when shopping.
  • Use cloth napkins instead of paper ones.

Recycling

  • Return hangers to your organic dry cleaner.
  • Reuse glass containers and recycle plastic ones.
  • Reuse or return plastic bags to your local supermarkets.
  • Crush cans and flatten cartons to reduce volume.

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