We often talk a lot about going green, but we never actually find the time to make some real changes in our lives.
The truth is we don’t need to make such a big effort in order to see big changes. Often the smallest changes can produce the most valuable results.
We all need to start from somewhere and then improve over time until we’re satisfied with how we’re living our lives and we are happy with how much we are contributing to saving our environment.
A recent study showed that most people don’t realize that they can make a big change in the way they live and impact the environment by implementing a few small changes in their daily routines.
Here are 7 small changes you could make in order to live a more Eco-friendly life, starting today!
1. Recycle and Up-cycle
Believe it or not, there are some things that are even more important than recycling. Sure, it’s important that we recycle everything that is recyclable, but what’s more important is to try and reuse or upcycle the items we already have in our home.
By up-cycling we can create new and beautiful pieces of home and garden furniture and much more, from old, worn out pieces, like old clothes, tyres, pallets, water bottles, boots, suitcases, or basically anything else you have lying around in your home.
So the next time you’re doing some spring cleaning and are planning on throwing away things you no longer use, think about the ways in which you can improve or remodel them so that you can give them new life with a wonderful new twist.
That way you’ll have items that nobody else has, and you’ll be lowering your carbon footprint by not buying new items that you can actually make yourself from items you already own.
2. Borrow, Share and Reuse
Rather than let your house sit empty while you are on vacation bring in some house sitters. They can care for your pets, plants and ensure the house is secured the whole time. Not only that you provide a place for someone to stay rather than renting a hotel room. You can save a lot of money house sitting, so check out the best house sitting websites, sign up and started saving.
You’re invited to a vintage wedding and you don’t have a suit or a dress to wear? Instead of going shopping right away, why not see if you can borrow something from a friend or a family member?
We are all used to buying new clothes for each occasion and leaving them to sit in the closet forever. So if you cannot find something to borrow, you should at least try to buy clothes that you can wear on multiple occasions not just for that one wedding.
How many people do you think have worn a suit or dress just once and then never again?
3. Get Rid of Chemical Cleaning Supplies
You can go green when cleaning as well, by making your own eco-friendly cleaning products that are not only good for your family’s health but are great for the environment as well.
Get rid of those toxic chemical cleaning supplies, and try some fantastic alternatives.
Biodegradable and Eco-friendly detergents can be found in most supermarkets and can be easily made at home, using ingredients you probably already have in your pantry. For example, you can clean up a minor mold issue using these homemade/natural/environmentally-friendly methods.
Not only will you avoid those harsh chemical smells, but you can also rest assured that your home will be clean and fresh!
As a side note, Business Insider recently wrote a post about everyday Eco-friendly products that you can easily switch to using.
For example, you could use a mixture of baking soda and vinegar to clean the kitchen and bathroom tiles instead of using a harsh chemical based one. You might be surprised at how impressive the results are.
4. Skip Buying Plastic Items
We are all surrounded by plastic everywhere we look. Everything comes in a plastic container today that it’s basically impossible to avoid buying any plastic, but once you start thinking about the sea life and everything else that suffers from our excessive use of plastic, you start finding ways to avoid it as much as possible.
Here’s what you can do:
- Skip water bottles altogether and use reusable glass bottles.
- Buy products that are packed in Eco-friendly materials such as PCR and paperboard containers, paperboard jars and tubes, black PIR jars, recycled materials, hemp clothes or zipper bags, glass bottles or jars and so on.
5. Bring Your Own Bag When You Go Shopping
There are a lot of countries in the world that have already banned or taxed the use of single-use plastic bags, which have contributed a lot in the drop of the amount of plastic bags strewn into the ocean and landfill sites.
The first time that the bag taxes were introduced was in 2003, in Denmark and Ireland, and it became effective in England in 2015 as well.
Even if you don’t have bans or fees in your country, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t bring your own bag when you go grocery shopping, so that you can avoid using plastic bags altogether.
6. Cut Down on Meat
Want to have a healthier, more Eco-friendly diet? One way of doing that is by reducing your meat consumption, cutting out meat completely or choosing meat which has a lower carbon footprint.
Eating less meat is crucial for a healthy lifestyle and a healthy planet. Research shows that meat-heavy diets lead to obesity, heart disease and even cancer, which is quite alarming.
That’s not even the scariest thing.
Meat consumption makes our planet sick as well. Believe it or not, raising chickens, cows and pigs actually generate as much greenhouse gas emissions as all cars, automobiles and trucks combined, and that’s not the only way it’s affecting our planet.
Millions of square km of forests are cut down in order to build farms and pastures for the farm animals, which leaves an even bigger carbon footprint.
If we decide to consume less meat, or even avoid it altogether, we’d be contributing both to our health and the health of our planet.
7. Walk, Ride Your Bike or Use Public Transport
This last rule one is pretty obvious one, yet there are a lot of us who don’t live by it.
We all love the convenience that comes with taking the car to work, school, when shopping, going out, or basically everywhere else, and even though there are many situations where a car is more than necessary, that’s not always the case.
Bike riding, walking or even taking public transport has huge benefits for the environment, and it not only lowers greenhouse gas emissions, but it also minimizes pollution and helps save our planet, one walk or bike ride at a time. We all have the power to reduce our carbon footprint easily.
Imagine if every person in the World swapped just one car journey a day for public transport, walking or riding their bike. There are over 7 billion people in the world, including over 1.3 billion in China and another 1.3 billion in India…That would make a huge impact on global pollution.