It’s more clear than ever that the climate crisis is here. To conserve the Earth for future generations we need to become more sustainable and there are everyday changes you can make to help. In honor of Earth Day we've gathered some tips to become more sustainable.
What is Sustainable Living?
Living sustainably means reducing your use of Earth’s natural resources and your personal resources. In order to be sustainable you should prioritize renewable resources and products to avoid excess waste.
Right now, humanity is not living a sustainable lifestyle. Natural resources are being depleted at an alarming rate and we risk running out of them one day. We are already starting to see the effects on our environment such as pollution and severe climate change. It’s important that everyone does their part to reduce their carbon footprint and make sure our planet is habitable for future generations.
How to Live a More Sustainable Lifestyle
We’ve compiled a list of simple lifestyle changes you can use to make a difference. Start by picking a few that are easy for you and try working up to all of them!
Recycling helps save energy and resources, and most importantly reduces pollution. Recyclable items include paper, cardboard, metals, glass, batteries, and more. Recycling is one of the easiest ways to make a difference, just simply get a recycling bin and distinguish what is recyclable and what is trash. There should be local places near you that allow you to drop your recycling off for free. Your town may also have a recycling pick up service in your town that you can sign up for.
2. Buy Food Locally
When we sit down for a meal, we don’t necessarily think about where it originally comes from. It takes a lot of energy and resources for many items to get to our kitchen tables. Instead, head to a farmers market or try shopping at store that sources from local farms. You could also try planting your own fruits, vegetables, and herbs. If you’re grocery shopping, use reusable grocery bags on your next trip. These are long lasting and oftentimes you can hold more in these reusable bags than the plastic ones at the store.
3. Donate Old Items
Instead of throwing away clothes, choose to donate them instead. There are a number of places you can donate including Goodwill, The Salvation Army, local homeless shelters, and drop boxes in parking lots. You might even be able to make some extra cash on unwanted goods by trying secondhand apps such as Poshmark, Mercari, Ebay, etc.
4. Invest in Reusable Products
There are a lot of options consumers have to buy products that are beneficial for the environment. Try to avoid single use items that are just going to end up in a landfill. Stop using plastic water bottles and replace them with a reusable water bottle. Switch out your zip-loc bags for reusable storage bags. Start using a reusable lunch container and shampoo bars. This change requires you to initially invest in some new products, but will save you money in the long run!
5. Go Paperless
With today’s technology, going paperless is easier than ever. Whether you’re receiving bills, coupons, or financial statements in the mail, most companies will give you the option to go paperless and instead have your information emailed to you. Not only does it save paper, but this will stop important documents from getting lost in the mail. You can also make this change when you’re shopping in stores; choose to have your receipt emailed to you instead of printed off.
6. Travel with Minimal Waste
Many of us are often guilty of choosing convenience over the environment when it comes to travel. But buying travel size toiletries for every trip (that usually end up getting thrown away before being finished!) is not only wasteful, it gets expensive. Investing in refillable, travel size containers will allow you to take your favorite products with you. We recommend a travel organizer with refillable containers or this travel container 2 pack. And if you’re looking to start teaching your kids about being sustainable young, try the Disney's Frozen travel organizer kit or Disney's Mickey Mouse travel organizer kit.
7. Save Energy
It’s important to use less energy in order to help reduce carbon emissions. There are a number of ways you can save energy, especially in the home. Some examples include opening windows instead of running the A/C, switching off standby appliances, turning your heat down, hanging clothes to dry instead of using a drier, and turning off all unnecessary lights when not in a room. LED light bulbs are also a great switch to conserve energy in the home.
8. Use Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products
Some cleaning products contain chemicals that can be harmful to the environment. By committing to using eco-friendly cleaning products, you can help to prevent these chemicals from harming the Earth. Some other helpful tricks are to ditch the paper towels and use a reusable towel or old clothes. Common household items such as baking soda and vinegar make great cleaning supplies as well. Vinegar can get rid of those stubborn mold, scum, and mildew build ups.
9. Use Public Transportation if Possible
American public transportation can be a real hassle at times. If your area is lucky enough to have public transit, give it a try the next time you have to run an errand. There are many local bus lines to hop on, otherwise if you’re someone who commutes to the city for work, try taking one of the trains that is accessible to the public. Not only is this saving gas, you are also saving money on your own gas. If you’re not one to be on a schedule, other great options include carpooling, walking or biking.
If you have any more ideas on how to be sustainable, share your thoughts in the comments below!