Thanks to the intense awareness programs and the consequences of our careless actions we face nowadays, more and more attention is being given to environmentally friendly lifestyles. The damage careless human activities have done to the environment is intense. However, with careful planning and taking one small step at a time, we can contribute to reconverting nature into its original paradise. How can we live environmentally friendly lives, the easy way? Most of us do love nature, but our business and thus, the lack of time doesn’t really allow us to go green. Here are some simple solutions that will not require you to alter your lifestyles, but will help alter the environment for the better.
Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle
The three R’s that will add decades to the life span of Mother Nature! Think about the plastic cutlery you use daily. Think about the number of polythene wrappers you dump in the garbage. Did you know that over 2.5 billion pounds of plastic is dumped each year? That is the weight of 900,000 elephants! Did you also know that each year, an average of 200,000,000 plastic containers, that could have been reused or recycled are recovered from highways and waterways in the US alone? Throwing away that one spoon you ate lunch with may not seem that big a deal, but imagine how many will add up to in a year, in a decade and how many it would sum up to if all people chose the easy way out. Try using biodegradable material instead of non-biodegradable like plastics. Also keep some steel cutlery in your bag, wrapped in a paper bag. That way, when you order from restaurants that give you plastic, disposable cutlery, you may refuse them. Also make it a point to not purchase disposable cups, plates, etc for occasions. Even though it is the easy way out, washing half a dozen plates and spoons isn’t all that bad.
Ensuring the dumping of your garbage in assorted ways is a great way to minimize the pollution and related hazards. Having three separate garbage bins at home; one for paper, one for non-decomposing material and, the third for metals and glass is the best way to help recycling efforts. You can also contact a local recycling plant and arrange to have your garbage picked. You can tryout the following steps based on the applicability.
- Pack lunch in paper boxes rather than regiform boxes.
- Keep cloth serviettes around the house and office, rather than paper ones.
- Get your kids to do crafts with recyclable material.
- Do not throw away the things you no longer need; donate the things in good condition to charity and hand the others over to the recycling plant.
- Collect plastic cutlery, wash them up and use them three or four times before permanently disposing.
You will indeed be surprised at the amount of cash you will save from following the simple rules above. Most importantly, encourage your little ones to follow the three R’s.
Be Aware of Your Carbon Footprint and Reduce It
Your carbon foot print indicates the amount of greenhouse gases you release to the environment due to the lifestyle you run with. Just like the three R’s, following are some simple rules that will require no additional time from your busy schedule. Let’s start with the supermarket;
- Do not buy heavily packed goods; go for lightly packed items if practicality allows you.
- Buy in bulk.
- Buy fresh milk, fresh fruit, and vegetables.
- Buy meat from the butcher rather than off shelves of the supermarket where the meat is wrapped in cellophane packing.
Now that we have taken a look at some simple go-green steps you can take when shopping for food, let’s come to your home;
- Replace your light bulbs with CFL bulbs.
- Use automatic heat regulating systems.
- Use electric appliances only when you need them.
- Keep the computer and other similar electrical appliance on stand-by rather that switching them on and off constantly.
- Check your plumbing system at least once every six months in order to maintain it at its best.
- Install a solar powered water heater.
- Open the fridge only after you figure out what you want from it.
- Iron all your cloths at once.
Try promoting environmentally-friendly living at home by putting up some posters that indicate these steps. It will be a reminder for everyone who lives in and set a great example for children.
Finally, walk! Walk up the stairs, walk to places that are less than one kilometre from home. Walking will have its health benefits of course, and it will benefit the environment by saving millions of gallons of fuel annually. Who can guess? If we stick to greener lifestyle, fossil fuels might last an additional 40 years.