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What You Can Do

While there are many threats to clean air, one need not feel helpless. There are many things individuals can do to help keep air clean. The list that follows offers some clean air tips.

Drive Less

  • Bike, walk, carpool, or use public transportation as an alternative to driving.
  • If you must use your car, try to plan activities so that several trips can be linked together.

Conserve Energy

  • Use compact fluorescent bulbs. They give off light similar to traditional light bulbs, but use a quarter of the energy and last much longer.
  • When buying appliances, look for the yellow Energy Guide label that indicates energy efficiency. Choosing high-efficiency (ENERGY STAR) appliances cuts down on your bills, utility plant emissions, and ultimately smog.
  • Purchasing a more fuel efficient vehicle also conserves energy and saves you money. To compare vehicle efficiencies, visit the U.S. Department of Energy's and Environmental Protection Agency's fuel economy website. 
  • To get started conserving energy and thereby reducing your emissions, visit Efficiency Vermont's website.

Maintain and Refuel Your Car Properly

  • Frequent gas stations with stage II vapor recovery nozzles. The new nozzles prevent two million gallons of gas from evaporating into our air each year. For more information regarding Stage II Vapor Recovery systems and nozzles in Vermont. Click here to be directed to our compliance section on Gasoline Vapor Recovery.
  • Prevent gas spillage; don't top off your tank.
  • Inflate tires properly. Cars with soft tires take up to 5% more energy to operate.


  • Limit vehicle idling. Idling causes unnecessary air pollution and decreases the fuel economy of your vehicle

Use Products That Pollute Less

  • Use citrus-based solvents. In most cases, these solvents are safe and effective.
  • Use natural briquettes for your barbecue and avoid using lighter fluid. For example, use a charcoal chimney starter.
  • Choose water-based latex paints for your home painting. Oil-based paints and varnishes contain solvents that pollute the air and harm your health.
  • Buy goods made from recycled materials.

Other Steps You Can Take

  • Do not burn your trash. Burning trash is harmful to your health, the environment and is illegal in Vermont.
  • When selecting small engine products (e.g., outboard engines, lawn & garden equipment, snowmobiles, etc), choose a product with a  4-stroke engine or electric motor rather than a 2-stroke.
  • Purchase no-spill gasoline cans. According to the Alliance for Proper Gasoline Handling, a consortium of oil industry, small engine manufacturers and government entities, each year Americans spill over 9 million gallons of gasoline. This is the equivalent of a super tanker.  


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Last Updated: 1/22/03


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