Green Living Tips

Buy Green Power

With TVA's Green Power Switch Program, you can purchase one block (150 kWh) of green power for only $4 a month. The energy produced from this program comes from renewable sources such as solar and wind. By purchasing clean energy, you can help reduce air pollution in the region and our dependence on coal. To purchase green power, you can sign up on your monthly KUB bill or Here.
To learn more about the Green Power Switch Program, please visit TVA's Green Power Switch website.

Paper or plastic?

At the grocery store, be sure to choose paper bags instead of plastic, or better yet, bring your own canvas bag. You can resuse paper bags to collect recycling. If paper bags are not an option, be sure to reuse or recycle your plastic bags- most grocery stores have a receptacle to recycle plastic bags.

Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

In that order!! For a list of recycling centers in Knoxville, please visit here.

How to have a green holiday season

  • Wrap your gifts in newspaper or old paper bags, or better yet skip the wrapping paper altogether!
  • Re-use boxes, paper, bags and bows from last year.
  • Use one larger box for several items instead of numerous small boxes for the same person.
  • Buy compact fluorescent lightbulbs for gifts!
  • Buy gift certificates for green companies, such as Three Rivers Market, Knoxville's Community Food Co-op. Membership is only $25, and gift certificates are available.
  • Use a fake Christmas tree, or compost your real one.
  • Buy a potted tree, and plant it when the holidays are over.
  • Turn your Christmas tree lights off as much as possible--during the day, at night after midnight; put them on a timer so they're only on at certain points of the day.
  • Donate to an environmental organization.
  • Retire a pollution permit!
  • Recycle all your wrapping paper, wine bottles, etc.
  • Eat a free-range turkey and ham, or don't eat meat at all!
  • Eat local and/or organic veggies and fruits, and choose produce that is in season to cut down on energy use and transportation.
  • Carpool! And if you have to rent a car, choose an energy efficient one.
  • Carpool home with people from your hometown.
  • Celebrate buy-nothing day, the day after Thanksgiving--just because you're told to buy something doesn't mean you have to!
  • Send cards made from recycled paper, or better yet send e-cards.
  • Make a difference with your gift--buy food for a needy family at
  • Make your present instead of buying something!
  • Bring your own bag to the store instead of getting plastic bags. For your groceries, choose paper over plastic bags!
  • Conserve--turn off water when you're not using it, and turn off lights when you leave a room.
  • Unplug your appliances when you go home for break--it saves a lot of energy!

Great Recycling Books

Get rid of your junk mail!!

Mail a postcard to:
Mail Preference Service
Direct Marketing Association
11 West 42nd Street
Farmingdale, NY 11735

***On your postcard request that you name be removed from future selling lists***

Write a letter to government officials

Tell them you don't want mining and cell phone towers in national parks!

Political Contact Information

U.S. Capitol Switchboard: 202.224.3121
White House Comment Line: 202.456.1111

White House Address:
1600 Pennsylvania Ave
Washington, DC 20500

Senate Address:
US Senate
Washington, DC 20510

House Address:
US House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Recycling at Work

Knox County Solid Waste
205 W. Baxter Ave.
Knoxville, TN 37917-6493

Recycling Obscure Materials

The Consumer Recycling Guide
Here you will find information on how to recycle everything from computer disks to greeting cards to light bulbs to carpet. Pretty extensive.

Tips on Waste Prevention for Students

A great informational site by the folks at the University of Michigan. Even though the title says 'for students', it's information that anybody and everybody can use.