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Paper or Plastic?
Being Green

Welcome to the popular and unique ESL HELP! Desk, where we care about improving your English grammar and communication.   Our podcast topics range from grammar lessons to topics of contemporary interest.

At the ESL Help! Desk, we also care about saving the Earth, and this is what today's lesson is about.  In supermarkets all across the United States, customers are accustomed to being asked, "Paper or plastic?" when they are checking out.

However, the world is changing and pretty soon this question may be obsolete.  Supermarkets are encouraging consumers to bring their own bags.  Some supermarkets (Whole Foods, for example) are offering customers a 10 cent credit for each bag the customer himself provides

Why?  People everywhere are trying to save the Earth and trying to economize at the same time.

Would you like to know some simple things you can do to help save the Earth and to save money at the same time? Here are some easy things that you can do:

  1. Bring your own - preferably recyclable - bag(s) when you go shopping.

  2. Use compact fluorescent bulbs wherever possible. These bulbs use only one fourth (1/4) the energy of incandescent bulbs .

  3. Don't leave electronics such as your TV, lights, and radio on when you leave your home.  That also goes for your computer. Put your computer into " stand by" mode if you will return in a short while.   Turn your monitor, printer, and speakers off as well.

  4. Don't leave the refrigerator door open longer than is necessary.

  5. Recycle!  Recycle your paper, plastics, and glass.  Don't throw out old electronics even if they are no longer in working condition:  Recycle them. The metal parts contained within each appliance is valuable and can be taken out, salvaged, and reused. Contact your town and find out where to recycle old electronics such as refrigerators, microwave ovens, computers, monitors, printers, ink cartridges, paint, batteries, and even books.>

    From time to time we'll provide more tips on how you can economize ,  save energy,  save money, and improve your English language skills, all at the same time! 

    In our next lesson, we'll also offer you a grammar lesson on imperatives, commonly called "commands".

    Hope to see you then!

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(to be) accustomed to - (to be) used to

(to) check out - (to) pay at the cash register

pretty + adjective - somewhat (+ adjective)

obsolete (adj.) - no longer in existence

(to) credit - (to) offer a credit

(to) economize - (to) spend money carefully and without waste

compact fluorescent bulb

incandescent bulb

( to) leave (something) on

(to) stand by / standby mode

(to) leave (something) open

(to) recycle

recyclable (adjective form)

(to) economize

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