Best Energy Efficient Holiday Gifts
The holidays are around the corner and as usual I’m sure all your friends and family are requesting energy efficient presents. Okay, maybe your friends and family aren’t clamoring for the latest energy efficient gadget, but they might just not know what’s out there! Either way, I found some cool gift ideas that are good for the environment (and for the wallet) for kids and adults.
1. The 14 in 1 Educational Solar Robot Kit
Batteries not included, or needed! The 14- in-1 Educational Solar Robot Kit can be made into 14 different robot modes that can move on both land and water, and best of all, it’s powered by sunlight. There are two levels of building in the kit. Once the user masters the first level, which includes a turtle-bot, beetle-bot and dog-bot, he or she can move on to the second to build a zombie-bot, crab-bot and many others. It’s only $26.95 and available on ScientificsOnline.
2. AON Box Collapsible Portable Green Speakers
These lightweight, portable speakers are made with 100% renewable resources and are really easy to use. Basically, if you can open and close a Chinese food container, you’re good to go. They set-up and collapse the exact same way and can be effortlessly stored in a backpack, suitcase or carry-on bag. It comes with two speakers, each providing 1 watt of sound, without the need for batteries. They are compatible with all MP3 players, cell phones, and iPods. The speakers come in many different colors and patterns, and can be found for only $19.95 on The Ultimate Green Store.
3. Hydropower Renewable Energy Science Kit
For ages 8 and up, the hydropower kit teaches children how to harness the energy of moving water to create power. The kit helps the user construct a hydropower station to generate electricity and power an LED (low energy consuming light bulb). It also comes with information to teach your little energy aficionado about the history of hydropower, from waterwheels to tidal power stations. You can buy it on Next Day Science 4 Kidz for $49.95.
The Scorpion makes a Swiss Army Knife look like a pet rock. It’s a charger, flashlight, radio, bottle opener and speaker, plus it’s waterproof! It uses solar power to function, but if you need power when light is scarce, it can be cranked to recharge. The Scorpion includes a battery charge indicator and a USB port for charging. An AUX input allows you to plug in and play your own music through the speakers or headphones! You can get it at Eton for $49.99.
5. Al Gore Reusable Shopping Bag
No one says holiday spirit like Al Gore! Probably best for your loved one with a sense of humor, the Al Gore reusable shopping bag actually is very functional (and easy on the eyes). It carries up to 40 lbs, is machine washable, and can fold into its attached pouch to make it easy to store in a purse or car. It’s a bit pricey for a bag, but at $17.99 it’s a bargain for how may compliments the user will receive from envious bystanders. Best of all, it’s better for the environment than icky plastic bags. You can buy it on CafePress.
6. Pressure Cooker
A pressure cooker is the gift that keeps on giving. By trapping hot air inside, it uses about 70 percent less energy than a regular pot or cooking appliance, and will only take about a quarter of the time to cook your food. You can also pair it with a pressure cooker cook book for someone less experienced with the device. Prices range from about $40 to $150, but I found one on sale at Macy’s for $25.99. It’s a good gift for someone who already likes to cook, or perhaps for someone you would like cook more.
7. LightWedge LED Paperback Book Light
The book light focuses LED light directly on a book to ensure full illumination, while not wasting any light elsewhere. The user just holds it on the page with the same hand to hold open the book and it keeps it lit without any strain on the eyes or electricity. This one does include batteries, but just one set of AAA batteries will last for 40 hours. It’s completely portable and can be found for $29.95 on Energy Circle.
No matter what, your loved ones will be happy with the gift you give them. But, getting them a present that is easy to use and energy efficient is a good way to go this holiday season. Without the hassles of having to recharge their favorite gadgets, they’ll be able to use them over and over again. Best of all, it will make your friends, family and the environment happy and healthy.
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