9 Ways to Lead a More Sustainable Life
From saving on your electric bill to household water management, here are some easy ways you can make a difference for our environment.
1. Reduce household energy use.
The average American household consumes 914 kilowatt-hours (kWh) per month. Resulting in about 875 pounds of CO2 emissions per household per month. Here are some ways to reduce your household energy use:
Turn off appliances and lights that you're not using.
Install energy-efficient appliances and lightbulbs.
Open a window instead of switching on the AC.
Hang clothes to dry instead of using the dryer.
If you're a homeowner, consider installing solar panels to create your own electricity, you'll save thousands of dollars on electricity bills and help the environment in one go.
2. Eat locally.
A powerful way to lead a more sustainable lifestyle is to eat locally grown fruits and vegetables. Supermarket chains offer the convenience of strolling through aisles stocked with fruits, vegetables, and other products from all over the world any time of year. But these products consume huge amounts of fossil fuels to get from one corner of the globe to your local supermarket. Next time, tey looking for a nearby farmers market and choose the best produce your area has to offer.
3. Plant seeds and trees.
Ever try growing your own food? Apart from the satisfaction you get from eating a self-grown tomato, you'll be doing the Earth a huge favor. Simply plant a few seeds in a corner of your yard or in a container on your porch or windowsill. You don’t need acres, a few square feet on a patio, along the driveway, or in a window box can provide enough space to grow edible herbs, fruits, and vegetables.
4. Do away with disposables.
Previous generations couldn't dream of using single-use razors, plastic utensils, bags, drinking straws and food storage containers. While making life a bit easier in the short term, these products have a devastating environmental effect, taking thousands of years to decompose (if ever) and releasing dangerous toxins into our air, water and soil. The next time you use a plastic bag ask yourself, is something I use for 3 minutes and then throw away worth the DECADES of environmental damage I create?
Drinking straws made of pasta being put to use in restaurants and bars across Italy.
Recycle as much as you can! If your neighborhood doesn't offer recycling pick up, either find a drop off location or write your local officials and demand a better recycling plan. Buying products labeled "post-consumer" can also make a huge difference as it lets companies know that recycling is the way to go.
6. Resell or donate items.
You can extend the life of a product you no longer use by selling or donating it. By extending the life of any product, you help reduce the number of items that end up in landfills. Try reselling clothing items or toys that are no longer in use. Or donate to your favorite charity that will redistribute them to people in need. You can also donate torn clothes and old blankets to animal shelters and help keep a few cuddly creatures warm during the winter.
7. Save water.
An easy way to manage your environmental footprint is to conserve household water use. Try installing water-efficient toilets or dual-flush ones that let you choose between flushing a full or half tank. Smaller changes such as switching to water-saving showerheads and faucets can also make a huge difference in your water consumption.
8. Stop relying on your car.
Looking at congested traffic jams, you can usually spot one person in each car. The amount of fossil fuels burned by car engines is one of the leading causes of climate change. Consider leaving your car home for one day of the week and use public transportation or ask a friend to carpool. When traveling closer to home try walking or biking to save on emissions and get a little exercise at the same time.
9. Get involved.
There are so many ways these days to get involved in sustainable living and help the environment. Write your local, state or federal government and express your concern for its environmental policy. Volunteer in cleanup operations or tree planting events. Inform your friends, family and neighbours about ways they can lead a more sustainable life. Do whatever you feel comfortable with, as long as you do something.
At Treehuggers Bracelets we are on a mission to bring together the world's biggest tree planting community. We believe that each one of us can make a difference, but that only together we can create change. We believe in tree planting as a way to start healing the Earth, and each other.
Our bracelets share a message, and connect us as a community committed to nature. Handcrafted and created from recycled materials, each bracelet purchased plants one tree in protected areas all over the world.