25 Years Ago in National Wildlife

With just a few exceptions, quarter-century-old conservation tips still offer good advice today

08-01-2003 // NWF Staff
Original National Wildlife magazine cover

LONG BEFORE concerns such as global warming and oil drilling in wildlife refuges became big news, people were looking for ways to conserve energy. In its August/September 1978 issue, for example, National Wildlife published the following "25 Ways to Slash Your Utility Bills," based on a Princeton University study that demonstrated a 50 percent difference in energy use between two families living in identical townhouses. With just a few exceptions, these tips still offer good advice today:

1. Turn down the water heater thermostat.
2. Insulate the hot water heater.
3. Drain the heater tank.
4. Insulate the pipes.
5. Hurry your showers.
6. Use less water.
7. Tune your furnace annually.
8. Insulate your basement.
9. Close up those air leaks.
10. Look for heater helpers.
11. Consider a dishwasher.
12. Eliminate the dry cycle.
13. Wash clothes at a cooler setting.
14. Have your thermostat checked.
15. Switch off the air conditioner sump heater.
16. Keep your refrigerator clean.
17. Unplug that old refrigerator.
18. Get rid of that large freezer.
19. Douse those pilot lights.
20. Don't preheat the oven.
21. Eliminate the television "instant-on."
22. Convert to fluorescent.
23. Cut your light wattage.
24. Use small appliances.
25. Landscape for energy.

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