Green living is a lifestyle that tries in as many ways as possible to balance the conservation and perseveration of earth’s natural resources, habitats, and biodiversity with human culture and communities. In simpler terms, green living is implementing environmentally-friendly ways of doing everyday activities into your life.
The following tips to go green are amidst the most fundamental and impactful steps you can take toward sustainable living. Most are simple to apply, but others can be more complex. Read through the list to see which environmentally-friendly options are practical for use in your everyday life:
- Use Essential Oils. Time to replace your chemical cleaners, most of your bathroom cabinet, air fresheners, and even some of your personal care items. Essential oils can be used to replace a majority of these products and most can be made at home with a DIY (Do It Yourself) approach.
- Stop Junk Mail. You can save an average of 69lbs of junk mail sent to your house each year. That’s a lot of paper! Visit DMAchoice.org for details on how to stop receiving junk mail.
- Give Up Bottled Water. Less than 20% of the 30 billion plastic water bottles sold annually in the U.S. are recycled each year and even recycling them wastes unnecessary energy. Using your own tap water and reusable water bottles will not only help the environment, but also save you money.
- Conserve Energy. Energy is getting harder and costlier to produce, from oil to natural gas. Energy is the source of 21.3 billion tons of CO2 emissions each year and more than 90% of greenhouse gas emissions. By doing simple tasks such as, turning off the lights, switching to energy-efficient light bulbs and appliances, using the washing machine with full loads, and opting for rechargeable batteries, you can conserve energy and save money.
- Conserve Water. It is estimated that 50% of household water usage is wasted. In order to avoid wasting so much water in your household, you can turn the faucet off, get leaks fixed, shower less often, and only use one cup a day.
- Green your Transportation. Commute sustainably by bicycling, walking, carpooling or riding the bus whenever possible. If you must take your car for travel then inflating your tires, driving slower, and combining trips are great ways to save gas and lower your amount of pollution.
- Eat Local, Organic Foods. Because foods are such an essential part of our existence, eating the right food can be one of the critical steps to going green. Choosing to eat locally will help you avoid food that has traveled over 1500 miles to reach you- cutting travel pollution. Choosing to eat organically can keep you safe from dangerous pesticides and chemicals.
- Go Chemical Free. Choose sustainable options over toxic chemicals. Making your own household cleaners using items such as vinegar, baking soda, olive oil, hydrogen peroxide, soap nuts, or essential oils can help the environment and provide you with a healthier living environment.
- Green your Personal Care. Simplify your personal care with natural products. Remember that simply eating healthy can lead to healthier skin and body. In addition, you can take sink baths to reduce water, use only organic products or no products at all, or opt for an easy to manage haircut.
- Support Locally-Owned Businesses. Research has shown that small businesses have a high probability of caring for the environment, supporting other businesses, and conducting business in an environmentally responsible method.
- Continue to Educate Yourself. As you begin to implement more green living methods into your everyday life, it might begin to spark conversations with friends or family. Educating yourself on why you are making these changes and why living green matters can help others understand the beneficial impacts it can have on our environment.