It’s New Year Resolution season! Resolve to create good environmental habits. They can reduce your carbon footprint and save you money.
- Don’t buy bottled water again. Use a filter at home if necessary and carry a reusable bottle with you. No more single-use water bottle purchases!
- Brew your own coffee or bring your travel mug to the coffee shop. No more cardboard cups and carrying sleeves. You can also brew Fair Trade coffee at home that supports farmers. Try a French press instead of a traditional brewer to save electricity.
- Remember your reusable shopping bags. Leave some in your car, one in your bag or purse, and one at work so they’re always handy.
- Cut back on paper towels. Invest in a few cotton or microfiber cloths for cleaning. Use, wash and reuse fabric napkins.
- Use a bike for short trips. For those quick trips when you just need a couple items from the store or when you are meeting friends for lunch, trade in your car for your bike. You’ll reduce your carbon footprint, save money on gasoline and car maintenance, and increase your fitness level.
- Buy local produce. Join a CSA (community-supported agriculture) program and have part of your grocery shopping done for you. The CSA will put together a box of its best produce each week and some will even deliver it to your home.
- Become a weekend vegetarian. Removing meat from your diet two days of the week can decrease your carbon footprint by one-third of a ton. Try fresh salads, veggie pizza, bean soups, risottos, and other non-meat dishes.
- Eliminate phantom power. Use power strips to turn off all your appliances at once, invest in chargers that stop drawing current when the device’s battery is full, and put electronics like your television and game system on a timer so they automatically shut off overnight. You could reduce your energy bill by as much as 10 percent annually.
- Make do with things you already have. Buy less stuff. Next time you shop, resist buying trinkets, thingamabobs and cute but useless items.
- Choose safer cleaning products. When purchasing cleaning materials, choose those with ingredients that have less impact on the environment and human health. You can also choose those with recyclable packaging to reduce garbage.
Let’s make 2019 the most environmentally friendly year we can! With issues such as climate change, pollution, food waste, and hazardous chemicals facing us, we owe it to ourselves and to the planet to be the best stewards we can be. What are some of your green New Year resolutions? Let us know. Post a comment down below. Have a fun, healthy, and green 2019!