We make so many decisions every day, many of which end up affecting our environment. From what you eat to how you run your household, there are so many everyday moments that impact the world around you.
There’s this misconception that it’s difficult and costly to switch to a more sustainable existence but this isn’t true. Earth needs our help more than ever and even the smallest changes can make a significant difference, particularly in the long run.
If you want to start leading a greener life, here are some easy-to-implement suggestions.
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1. Keep reusable grocery bags in your car
Whether you don’t use reusable grocery bags yet or you always forget them at home, make a point of keeping a few in your car. Plastic can take up to 1,000 years to decompose. Now, think about how many plastic bags you’ve purchased throughout your life. This doesn’t even include other plastic-based products. Cutting out plastic shopping bags is a great first step to living a more sustainable life.
2. Switch to a reusable water bottle
Bottled water might be convenient but it’s only adding to the high volumes of plastic that are thrown away every day. Instead of purchasing bottled water every day, rather invest in a reusable bottle that suits your style and carry that around with you instead.
3. Shun brands that endanger wildlife
Too many animals are being put in harm’s way to increase someone’s profits. Hundreds of animals are currently on the endangered species list but we can do something to prevent this list from growing. If you want to do your part to protect our wildlife, boycott brands that put animals and their habitats in danger. Rather look for products made from sustainable materials and ingredients and support restaurants that don’t serve species in peril.
4. Buy locally
If you need to go shopping, rather buy locally. This reduces the impact on the environment because it cuts down on transportation and pollution.
5. Take a closer look at labels
Buying organic and choosing Fair Trade certified goods ensures that you’re supporting products that put the environment first. Sustainable brands will include logos on their products that indicate they’re sustainable, environmentally friendly, organic or vegan.
6. Opt for a cold wash
Washing machines use a lot of energy and most of it is used to heat the water. Washing your clothes in cold water, or at least cooler water, will make a massive difference in energy efficiency.
7. Eat seasonally
Along with buying locally, eating seasonal foods is another way to start living more sustainably. When you mostly purchase foods that are in season, you know they haven’t been sitting in a warehouse for weeks or months.
8. Walk, ride your bike or use public transport
Instead of using your car every time you need to get somewhere, rather ride your bike, walk or take public transport. Doing so helps cut down on air pollution and it’s the perfect excuse to get some fresh air and spend time with friends or family.
9. Find ways to green your home
Keeping your home in shape means you can improve energy efficiency and do your part for the environment. Pay attention to areas such as insulation, cooling and electricity. Programmable thermostats and energy-saving windows and lightbulbs are all potential solutions.
10. Leave the printer off
Instead of printing your movie, airline or event tickets, get an e-ticket instead. The more trees we have, the more CO2 gets pulled out of the air. Going the electronic route instead of wasting paper is another simple way that you can make a long-term difference.
If everyone had to start making these small but significant changes, we would start seeing some major changes in the world around us that would greatly benefit future generations.