If you had an open fire, how much of the
fuel energy would be wasted up the chimney?

Heating Efficiency

Choose your answer

40%
60%
80%

Correct

Open fires are very hungry for fuel without giving much heat, as up to 80% disappears up the chimney with the smoke. The same amount of dry wood, burned in an enclosed modern wood-burner with its flue-pipe exposed to air, heats your room far better. Information on why energy efficiency matters

Which plants attract
bellbirds or tuis
into gardens?

Trees & Wildlife

Choose your answer

Harakeke and mountain flax (Phormium species)
Kowhai (Sophora species)
Pittosporum species

Correct

All of these are attractive, because of their spring nectar, as are many autumn berry producing NZ native shrubs and trees (including Coprosma, Fuchsia, Griselinia, Melicytus). Gardens have lots of human uses, alongside the home they provide for wildlife. Assess your backyard sustainability - how do you rate?

Average car journeys in
New Zealand are
surprisingly short.
How short?

Fuel Economy

Choose your answer

3km
6km
8km

Correct

In New Zealand towns and cities, an estimated 47% of journeys are now under 3km and 70% are under 8km! This helps explain the congested city streets, the fumes, and more kids becoming over-weight. Learn about the real costs of motoring

True or false: Cycling
is the most efficient
converter of fuel to
energy of any available
transport mode.

Lower Carbon Emissions

Choose your answer

True
False

True!

In terms of energy efficiency, the carbohydrate ‘fuel’ used by a cyclist (e.g. some slices of toast, or a bowl of breakfast cereal) is converted to more kilometres of travel distance than their equivalent energy in petrol when it's used in a car. Understand motoring costs and alternatives to car travel

How many plastic
bags do New Zealand
shoppers use every
year?

Shopping Choices

Choose your answer

8 million
80 million
800 million

Correct

New Zealanders use 800 million plastic carrier bags a year – that’s about 200 per person! And to make matters worse, plastic bags don’t decay in landfills. So if you do still use them, make sure they are gathered up and put in the recycling bin. Are you shopping for the Planet?

True or False:
Flushing the toilet
accounts for 20% of
typical household
water use.

Conserve Water

Choose your answer

True
False

False!

Flushing the toilet uses more - closer to 30% of all household water demand. Installing a low-flush toilet (or using the 6 litre ‘half-flush’ option on an existing one whenever possible) can reduce water use significantly. Why water is a precious resource

How much of a room's heat can be lost
through un-insulated timber walls, in winter?

Building & Renovating

Choose your answer

10%
20%
30%

Correct

The walls usually have a larger surface area than windows, and they lose more heat in total than windows, especially if those windows are double-glazed. An uninsulated ceiling loses even more of the room's heat, because warm air rises. Huge amounts of fossil-fuel, wood and hydro-electric energy are demanded to keep inefficient NZ houses lit and warm. Understand home insulation

True or false: Nearly half
the weight of the average
NZ home's rubbish bag is
organic material that could
easily be composted at home,
or by a local council service.

Less Waste

Choose your answer

True
False

True!

The average NZ polythene sack or ‘wheelie bin’ of mixed domestic rubbish, collected from the roadside by a local authority, has between 42% and 47% garden clippings and kitchen scraps, by weight. Once in a landfill these decay into a toxic liquid 'leachate' and methane gas which contributes to climate change. Learn more

Which of these garden
weeds can you use to make
into useful liquid plant
fertiliser?

Organic Gardening

Choose your answer

Stinging Nettle
Comfrey and Borage
Docks and Dandelions

Correct

All of them, if cut and soaked in a sealed container of water for a few weeks. Can be smelly, but is useful when diluted as a tonic for vegetable or fruit crops. More organic gardening tips

LoHAS is becoming
a fashion statement in
California and in
Germany. Is it:

Healthy Home

Choose your answer

Look out for Hearty Anti-Smokers
Load on High Activity Sunscreen
Lifestyle of Health and Sustainability

Correct

These are becoming highly popular, boosted by many businesses that see opportunity in a growing market of 'critical consumers' who seek both a good quality of life and better care of the planet. It usually includes locally-grown and organic food, more interest in exercise, buying less mass-produced stuff in malls, and rediscovering nature. What is sustainable living?