7 Ways To Be More Environmentally Conscious
One of my resolutions for 2020 is to be kinder to the earth and create less waste! Looking after the environment is crucial because it’s the only home we have – and it’s in trouble. Here are my top seven ways you too can get started on being more environmentally friendly:
Reusable shopping bags
Keep reusable shopping bags in your car. This is an easy way to cut down on excess waste. Also, your reusable bag will be sturdier and cuter than any bag you’re handed at a store! They are also easier to use for both loading and unloading groceries, and your purchases are more likely to survive the trip to and from the store. Leaks are less likely to be a problem with reusable bags, and it's easier to control where your bags have been and what germs they may carry.
Carry a stainless steel or glass water bottle
80 percent of plastic water bottles end up in landfills…Each bottle leaks harmful chemicals into our environment along the way as it decomposes. Studies show that the toxins decomposing bottles of water leach into our environment cause a variety of health issues, including reproductive problems and cancer. Plastic water bottles are one of the most commonly used plastic items by everyday individuals – so do your part and stop carrying them around! If you have a stainless steel or glass option on hand, this will be an easy thing to do.
Don’t buy prepackaged fruit and vegetables
Stop putting everything in plastic! This is another easy way to cut down on your contribution to plastic reserves are on the planet. Not all produce needs to be in a bag. In fact, lettuces do better in cloth bags! There are many reusable ones on the market. Other produce will do fine just tossed into the crisper bin. For everything else, opt for paper bags instead of plastic.
Get picky about your recycling and make sure you are recycling everything you can. Your local council can provide you with what you can and can’t recycle – you’ll likely be surprised to find out how much of the stuff you usually toss in the bin is recyclable! And it makes a big difference. For instance, recycling paper saves 70% of the energy that it takes to make new paper.
Start composting if you have a garden
Composting is a great way to enhance your soil if you’re a keen gardener. This year I have started my own food garden and learning how to compost has been challenging but fun! It has decreased the waste in our rubbish bin each week and hopefully will give my soil some added nutrients and support. Fun fact: on average, 50% of the garbage in your bin could have been recycled – so why not start!
Reusing items is another great way to cut down on waste – and it saves manufacturing waste and energy as well. If you buy in glass jars, keep the clean jars for use later. You can also use them to store bulk products in my pantry and so much more.
Eat more plants and go organic
Conventional farming of livestock is one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gases. Focus on grass-fed meats when consuming animal proteins, and even better if you adopt more of a plant-based diet to reduce impact. Big industry produce-farming depletes water resources through irrigation practices. Grow your own produce if you can, even if that’s just herbs on your apartment balcony. This cuts down on energy use for transporting the produce to the grocery store. Shopping at organic farmer’s markets where produce is coming from local areas is also a great way to reduce energy waste. Organic farming practices also cause less soil depletion. Not to mention a plant-based diet is well associated with a lower risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and death from any cause.