When it comes to issues like climate change and threats to our ecosystem, the facts don’t look good. Thanks to human activity, global temps are rising at a rate that isn’t sustainable for our environment to survive. In a global emergency such as this, action is crucial. However, the idea of living a “greener” and more sustainable lifestyle can be intimidating to some people. Not everyone can afford to adopt a fully-vegan/organic diet, buy economy cars, compost their food or install solar panels on their home. But living more eco-friendly doesn’t have to be as intense as you may think. There are very simple actions that you can take right now to make a difference. Below are our top 5 easiest changes that you can implement into your daily life to start living a greener and eco-friendlier lifestyle.
Recycling is one of the most basic and simple ways to be more earth-conscious. By recycling one short ton (0.91 t) of paper you can save 17 mature trees, according to the EPA. What’s more, recycling doesn’t have to end at throwing your paper, plastic, cardboard, glass, and aluminum products in the recycling receptacle. You can recycle by donating or repurposing your used items like clothing, too. If you want to take it one step further, you can make sure you’re utilizing that recycling by purchasing products made with recycled materials. They’re easy to find and it’s a simple way to bring things full-circle.
- Use natural products
Natural, organic products are not only better for the environment, but they’re better for you as well. Without any harmful chemicals, artificial colors, or other biproducts, they’re less likely to be irritable on your skin, your body, and our ecosystem. The manufacturing of these eco-friendly products recycles sources and promotes biodiversity. Using natural products is a win-win for everyone involved, and is an ultra-easy way to improve your positive impact on our planet.
- Use reusable bags and water bottles
An easy solution to the overuse of single-use plastics is using your own reusable bags and containers. Bring reusable bags to the store with you instead of using plastic bags to bag up your items. You can also purchase your own reusable water bottle to refill your water when you need it, instead of wasting money buying plastic water bottles every time you’re thirsty. Reusable bags and water bottles are incredibly easy to buy and purchase, and there exists a huge array of cute and personal styles and looks to choose from.
- Borrow instead of buying
Oftentimes, we waste money on things that we could easily borrow. By buying and using pre-owned items, you reduce the number of items that end up in a landfill. Usually, already used items can be found in the same condition as they would be brand new, so you wouldn’t be settling for less. Rent movies, borrow books from libraries and buy secondhand goods whenever possible.
- Cut down on energy in your home
Cutting back on the energy you use in your home is not only good for the environment, but for your bank account, too! There are so many ways to be more mindful of the energy that you use in your home. Start by lowering your thermostat in the winter and raising it in the summer. If your home gets absolutely frigid, there are many measures you can take to better insulate your home so you can afford to turn down the heat. Also make sure you turn everything off when it’s not in use, and unplug if you can. Try to reduce how much water you use – especially your hot water. Take shorter showers, turn the sink off, and wash all the clothes you can on cold. Try drying your clothes on drying racks or clotheslines instead of using the dryer for every cycle. Reducing the energy you use in your home is as easy as a click of a button, and being mindful of these simple practices will come second nature to you in no time.
Written by: Marley Decker