Most people are now aware that the environment has been damaged by humans over the centuries in a variety of ways. The oceans are being polluted by microplastics and the ozone layer is damaged. Although it feels that much of this is out of your control there are actually many ways an individual can change their lifestyle to actively help.
Here are just 7 simple ideas that can help you to become more eco-friendly. They don’t require huge investments in either time or money but can make small differences. When lots of people actively change then it will add up to make a real change to the environment.
1. Ditch the plastics
Actually don’t actually ditch them just yet. The worst thing you can do when trying to be more eco-friendly is to pointlessly throw out things that can still be used. Most people will have some plastic containers or other items in their homes but if they are still usable then continue with them. When they finally break or become unusable then it is time to look for alternatives.
When buying lunchboxes there are options made from hemp and ceramics. You can get bamboo steamers and straws. In fact, they come in so many different materials including metal and glass that there is really no reason to ever buy damaging plastic straws again.
2. Get a compost bin
It is simple to put organic waste into a separate bin and won’t cost you any time at all. The only problem you will have is what to do with it after. If you cannot find a use for it yourself then ask neighbors, friends, and family if they want the compost. If that fails then there are pick up services that will take your compost and put it to good use.
3. Use your own containers
Humans have to eat and often people like to get takeaways to eat something that they can’t make at home. The problem is they produce waste in the form of containers. Some places will use biodegradable boxes and others have reusable plastic ones but it is even better if you can use your own. Check out local takeaways that let you bring your own boxes.
4. Bring your own coffee cup
If you can’t resist a hot brew or two then buy a reusable or travel coffee cup. KeepCup for instance was designed by baristas as a way to avoid taking a cup every time people go to a coffee shop. Those paper cups that the big coffee shops give out may look biodegradable but inside is a plastic lining that is not. The lining is needed to make the cup waterproof but unfortunately makes coffee cups unfriendly to the environment.
5. Change the way you wash your clothes
This is actually more than just one idea as there are many things you can change when washing your garments to be more eco-friendly. Buy green detergent or make your own. You can find out how by looking at an eco friendly site for tips. Only use washing machines when you have a full load and dry the clothes in the sun instead of the dryer. One way to really make a difference is to cold wash and thereby reduce how much power is consumed by your machine. This can cut the energy usage by up to 90%
6. Change the way you eat
Food wastage is one area that most people can improve on. Before you head to the shops look at what you have in the larder and the fridge. Is there anything that needs using or will go to waste? Use that first. Buy less meat and more vegetables. Avoid pre-packaged fruit and vegetables. Loose produce is often cheaper anyway.
7. Shop locally
Not only will this help your local shop owners but it will reduce your food carbon footprint. Don’t just try to use local shops though, where possible try to buy produce that comes from your area or as close to it as possible. Farmer’s shops and markets are good places to visit. Buy local jams, bread, and eggs. All of these things will help the environment and you will benefit by building a relationship with the sellers instead of a faceless corporation.
These are just a few ways that you can change the way you live to benefit yourself as well as the environment. There are many more ways you can be more eco-friendly. Local produce may cost more than supermarket bought food but the quality will often be far better. Changing your laundry practices can save you money though and will only take a little more effort.