Sustainability has become an essential topic in the last couple of years. Both individuals and companies are becoming aware that the planet they’ll leave for future generations won’t be as healthy as it can be.
The level of waste is rising across the globe, and plastic recycling is becoming an essential part of everyone’s lives. Still, there are more ways to promote a sustainable lifestyle and improve the environment.
What Is Sustainability?
Sustainability is defined as maintaining ecological balance by avoiding the depletion of natural resources. It means that people can still get their needs met without compromising the ability of the future generation to meet theirs. The good thing is you can introduce subtle changes to your lifestyle and bring a massive positive impact. Here’s how.
1. Drive Less
Driving is among the leading contributors to environmental issues. For example, the exhaust gas from cars includes carbon monoxide, a known threat to human health and contributor to global warming.
On the other hand, walking or biking to your desired location can significantly improve your health and reduce carbon emissions. If you live in an area where you can’t reach work by walking or cycling, public transportation is an excellent alternative.
2. Use Reusable Items
Plastic pollution is a serious issue, and you can help reduce the amount of plastic in the environment by switching to reusable items. One of the best pieces of advice is to check your garbage can to see what kind of plastic packaging you toss the most.
Then, focus on removing those materials from daily use and replacing them with glass or paper. Finally, visit the stores where you can refill your containers and purchase a reusable grocery bag. You can also buy a reusable water bottle, metal straws, or rechargeable batteries.
3. Use Solar Energy
If you notice you’re using too much electricity, maybe it’s time to consider switching to solar energy. Even though solar panels are expensive to install for the whole house, they’re a lifelong investment and pay for themselves within 20 years.
The most significant benefit of solar panels is that you’ll get free electricity. When it comes to the environment, solar panels don’t require water to produce energy, reduce air pollution, and minimize your home’s carbon footprint.
4. Minimize Paper Waste
Using paper in the internet era might be a little excessive. Even though it’s usually recyclable, some businesses use paper coated in plastic, foil, or wax, which can’t be recycled.
Everything you do stays online anyway, so you might want to consider reducing paper use in your daily life to a bare minimum. For example, switch to the cloud to store your photos and use emails for work. If you don’t trust cloud solutions, keep your data on a USB or external hard drive.
5. Recycle and Upcycle
When you throw away a package or a product, make sure you toss it in the right bin. Besides this rule, keep your eyes open for symbols on the packaging, which tell you exactly how to recycle the item.
You can also upcycle something if you’re creative. Upcycling is related to improving an item or transforming one useless product into something useful and new. For example, turning a stack of old newspapers into a biodegradable flower pot is upcycling.
6. Donate Unused Items
If you feel like your home is filled with things you and your family don’t use anymore, consider donating them to the local animal and homeless shelters, charities, Salvation Army, Planet Aid, and similar organizations.
However, before donating your items, make sure they’re in good condition. Consider giving away books, household items, appliances, accessories, shoes, and even furniture.
7. Save Electricity
If switching to solar panels is not a plausible investment at the moment, you can still save electricity in your home. Use natural light for as long as possible before turning on the light bulbs, and make sure to turn off the light when you leave the room.
You can also replace some everyday items in your home with electricity-saving ones. Today, you have access to eco chargers, smart sockets, programmable thermostats, and other handy appliances that use less electricity.
8. Save Water
Water is one of the most scarce natural resources today. Luckily, there are many ways in which you can use less water. Start with checking your pipes, faucets, and toilets for leaks. Then, make sure to close the tap while you’re brushing your teeth or shaving and take shorter showers.
Another trick to spend less water is to install water-saving showerheads. You can also try to load your washers fully and water your lawn only when necessary. In addition, it’s crucial to teach your children about the importance of water.
9. Promote Sustainable Fashion
Fast fashion is another issue that hurts the environment. However, you can always purchase ethical and sustainable brands or invest in a quality piece of clothing that will last longer.
If you want to increase your efforts, you can purchase second-hand items or go minimalistic and take on the Project 333 challenge. The idea is to wear 33 pieces of clothing for three months.
10. Make Your Own Beauty Products
If makeup plays a crucial role in your life and you feel like you can’t live without it, you can still contribute to sustainability regardless of the products you purchase. Start with making your own face cleanser or scrub.
You can also make reusable cotton pads for makeup removal and look online for simple homemade face masks. You’ll be surprised to learn about all the beauty products you can make with the items in your fridge.
The planet we live on is suffering, and the amount of waste is increasing daily. Many companies are slowly turning to a sustainable manufacturing process, but you can also help minimize waste production.
These changes might seem too much, but you can break bad habits gradually. Do your best to save electricity and water, and walk as much as you can. Donate unused items in your home, or invest in solar panels. Finally, get your whole family involved and promote sustainable living.