Energy Saving, Waste Less and Low Carbon Living Style

Shop with a plan

  • Think twice before you buy new clothes.  Do you really need them?  Do they go with the rest of your outfit?
  • Torn or outdated clothes can still be worn after they are mended or altered.
  • Do you want to save energy in ironing?  Buy wrinkle-resistant clothing!
  • Do you know that tissue is made of paper ?  Start using a handkerchief!

Washing clothes

  • Washing machines use a lot of water and energy.  Wait until you have a full laundry load before you wash.  Try using fast cold wash programme to save water, electricity and time.
  • Choose phosphate-free and biodegradable detergents and line dry as much as possible.
  • Many clothes with “Dry Clean Only” label can actually be hand washed especially for silk, wool and linen.

Drying clothes

  • Air dry your clothes instead of using a tumble drier.
  • Iron clothes in bulk to avoid reheating the iron.
  • Iron smart : iron clothes that require high heat first, then move on to clothes that require medium heat.  Then, turn off the iron for those that require low heat.

When buying new washing machine or dryer, choose one with Grade 1 energy label.

Don’t throw old clothes away

  • Donate your unwanted clothes to those in need or charity organisations; someone’s trash maybe someone’s treasure!
  • Cut torn clothes into smaller pieces and use them as scraps.

Baby products

  • Try avoid using disposable nappies.


Food Wise Hong Kong

Food shopping

  • “Think before you buy food”  :  Have a detailed shopping list to avoid over-purchase
  • Buy seasonal and local food to reduce your carbon footprint.
  • Buy local; not only is the food fresher and tastier, there is also less packaging and this can reduce energy consumption and pollution caused by long distance transportation.
  • Eat organic!  Organic food is grown and processed in ways that do not use chemical pesticides and fertilizers, which is better for human health and the earth.
  • Don’t forget to bring your own shopping bag !

Food preparation

  • “Think before you cook”  :  Ask yourself how much you can eat before you cook.
  • Steaming and stir-frying is an energy-efficient way of cooking.
  • Use your grill or oven to its full capacity rather than cooking one item at a time.  Likewise, fully utilise your rice cooker by steaming dishes together with the rice in one go.
  • Remember to put the lid on the pot or pan to trap heat.
  • Buy a refrigerator, rice cooker, etc. of a suitable size that suits your family need.
  • Do not place the refrigerator under direct sunlight or near the oven or cooker as it requires extra power to keep cool !
  • Leaking of cold air can greatly increase power consumption!  Remember to close your refrigerator door every time and replace the rubber seal immediately if damaged.
  • Do not put hot or uncovered food in the refrigerator; it needs extra power to keep cool!
  • If you are going abroad for a long period of time, clear out all the food inside the refrigerator and turn it off before you leave.

Eat more vegetables and fruits

  • Eating vegetables is not only good for your health, and when compared with meat production, they require less water, grain and feed.

Eating out

  • “If you can’t finish your food, don’t waste it”  :  Make the best use of leftovers and unconsumed food.
  • When you eat out, always take leftovers home.  You can have a free meal the next day.  Save money and waste less food!

Take away

  • Think how much you can eat before you order.  If you don’t want leftovers, choose suitable portions to avoid over-ordering.
  • Bring your own container when ordering take-outs.  You can reduce waste at source (e.g. by avoiding the use of disposable containers and utensils) !

Indoor plants

  • Coffee grounds, used tea leaves and egg shells, etc. can be used as fertilizer for your house plants !


Clean Recycling

  • Remember the three key points of clean recycling, namely keeping recyclables clean, not recycling composite materials and not putting food leftovers and used tissue paper in three-colour recycle bins, in order to integrate clean recycling practices in our daily life.

"Waste Less" mobile applications

  • Make use of the "Waste Less" mobile applications to get information on more than 7,000 collections points of different kinds.

Hong Kong Second-hand Exchange

  • You can post any unwanted but reusable items (except Restricted Items) on the Second-hand Exchange platform for donation or for sale at a nominal charge.  But, for e-business activities, please use other commercial websites.

Electrical Appliances

  • Power “off” electrical appliances whenever possible.  Do you know that they are still consuming electricity at standby mode?
  • Adjust the electric water heater to a lower temperature - not only can it reduce energy consumption, it can also save cold water needed for adjusting the water temperature.
  • Use rechargeable batteries.
  • When buying new electrical appliances, choose one with Grade 1 or 2 energy label.
  • Air circulation is important for a dehumidifier to function well.  Make sure there is enough space around.
  • Remember to check your electrical appliances regularly to ensure efficiency and safety !
  • Remember to recycle used computer products and other electrical or electronic products properly (including air-conditioners, refrigerators, washing machines, television sets, computers, printers, scanners and monitors, etc.)

How to stay cool / warm

  • Whenever possible, wear light and use fans instead of air-conditioning.
  • Set the temperature of the air-conditioner to an energy-efficient level, best at 24 – 26 ˚C, such that you feel comfortable rather than cold.
  • Avoid installing air-conditioners at a location under direct sunlight if possible.
  • Choose split type air-conditioners over the window type to save more power.
  • Do not obstruct the input or output air vents of air-conditioners.
  • Keep windows and doors shut when the air-conditioner/heater is on !
  • Draw curtains or blinds to keep direct sunlight out thus lowering room temperature.
  • Clean the air filter of air-conditioners regularly to improve cool air flow efficiency.
  • Choose a fan heater which is more energy-efficient than an electric heater.


  • Switch lighting on only when you need it.
  • For the environment and to save money, use energy saving LED lighting or compact fluorescent lamp.
  • Replace T8, T10, T12 fluorescent tubes with T5 fluorescent tube.
  • Place lighting at suitable locations of your flat so as to maximise lighting efficiency, and thereby reducing the number of lamps required.
  • Do you want to achieve optimal lighting effect?  Do not turn on unnecessary lighting. Choose non-opaque, light coloured lampshades, and clean the bulbs and lampshades regularly.
  • Choose a light coloured decoration scheme for your main living areas to increase light reflectivity.
  • Use low wattage light bulbs in bedrooms.

Save water

  • Save energy, reduce carbon emissions and minimise water consumption by taking shorter showers. 
  • Install flow controller in the water tap.
  • Turn off the tap while brushing teeth, applying soap or shaving.
  • After washing clothes by hand, reuse the water for mopping the floor or flushing the toilet.
  • Repair water leaks  -  a dripping faucet can waste up to 76 litres of water per day.
  • Have your water heater inspected from time to time as recommended on the unit's label to ensure its efficiency and safety.


  • Walk or cycle to school or work; it’s good for the environment and you too.
  • Try not to take the lift, climb more stairs!
  • Use public transport whenever possible.
  • If you need to buy a private car, consider carefully its fuel consumption and performance and make sure it is properly maintained.  Electric, hybrid, and diesel powered vehicles (Euro 4 and above models) are more environmentally friendly.
  • How to be more economical on fuel?  Drive at a reasonable speed and avoid sudden braking.
  • Switch off your car engine while waiting, not only to comply with the law and minimise air pollution, but also save fuel and money.
  • If possible, instead of taking overseas business trips, conduct video conferencing or use emails to reduce carbon footprint from flights.


Energy Saving, Waste Less and Low Carbon Living Style


User review date: 
Friday, 13 May, 2016