The “green” movement is everywhere. It isn’t a fad or a temporary campaign. It is a lifestyle that more people are realizing needs to be embraced and adopted.
Being “green” in every way possible is a definite statement that you respect the planet, animals, yourself, and future generations. Here are some great ways to become greener than green!
1. Minimize Trash
—Avoid plastic packaging all together.
—Use cloth napkins instead of paper napkins and dish rags or old T-shirt squares instead of paper towels.
—Use wash cloths versus disposable sponges.
—Buy a stainless steel water bottle and thermos.
—Pack lunches in reusable lunch bags and stainless steel food containers, with bamboo utensils.
—Don’t use straws unless they are biodegradable.
—Compost your food scraps.
—Use biodegradable trash bags.
2. No More Disposable Clothing
—Stop shopping at cheap disposable clothing shops. The clothing won’t last long or captivate your interest forever anyway.
—Donate unwanted clothing to goodwill or a homeless shelter.
—Have a clothing swap with friends. Doing this two or three times a year will be a ton of fun and will cure the need to shop constantly.
—Buy vintage and have it tailored to perfection.
—If you must buy new clothing, buy organic clothing as much as you can. Support eco-friendly designers and clothing companies.
3. Go Paperless
—Do online banking and go paperless.
—Don’t print ATM receipts. This simple choice can save a lot of paper.
—Go paperless with your bills all together.
—Buy recycled paper products.
—Only print what is truly necessary off the computer.
—Use scrap paper for quick notes.
—Avoid using paper cups at water coolers.
4. Green Your Groceries
—Support organic farmers and buy only organic produce as much as possible.
—Shop at your local farmer’s market to limit how far your food is shipped.
—Buy groceries items in bulk like rice, cereal, flour, beans, etc. By buying in bulk you are avoiding excess packaging that fills landfills, and the extra products and energy needed to create the packaging.
—Buy large size juices and milks versus small juice boxes and use a thermos instead.
—Put large size produce in your cart without a plastic bag and smaller size produce in biodegradable shopping bags.
—Make your own almond milk versus buying it in a container.
—If you must buy frozen food buy organic.
—Become vegetarian, or at least eat 50% less meat.
—Use reusable shopping bags and always have some in your car at all times. Keep one on your key chain so you’ll never forget it!
5. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Recycle, Recycle
—Become a minimalist and learn to live with less.
—Stop consuming just to consume. Buy only what you need and treat yourself on occasion.
—Reuse containers at least once before recycling.
—Recycling saves energy! One recycled glass bottle is equivalent to lighting a 100-watt light bulb for four hours.
—Recycle any and all things that your recycling center will accept. Clean all your recyclables before sending them off.
—Find a recycling center near you and find out what they accept.
6. The Extras
—Buy rechargeable batteries.
—Use cloth diapers or biodegradable diapers.
—Take a fancy reusable shopping bag to all stores, not just the grocery store.
—Use earth friendly cleaning supplies and protect our water!
—Donate your junk! An old computer may become a treasure to a library or an after school program.
—Turn off and unplug any and everything that you aren’t currently using.
—Plant a tree.
—Borrow books, CD’s, and DVD’s from the library, store rentals, friends, and family.
—Continue to search for more ways you can make a difference to better our planet.
(Image by D Sharon Pruitt)