Living green is a must in today’s world. Our planet is suffering from the effects of global warming, with continued industrialization and deforestation of Earth causing rising global temperatures with catastrophic results. The effects of such a global catastrophe include more frequent wildfires, longer periods of drought in some regions, and an increase in the number, duration, and intensity of tropical storms. We see the intensity of such global warming-related events increasing with every year, and might think, “Well, there’s not much that I can do about it. It is what it is.” This doesn’t have to be true.
The truth is that there are things that you can do to help stem the tide of global warming. First and foremost amongst these choices is to switch to a greener lifestyle. Living green means that, first and foremost, you’re putting the planet first. This type of lifestyle promotes a healthy environment in the home, community, and planet. Factors that are involved in creating a green home lifestyle include contributing as little waste as possible, eliminating toxic substances, and reducing our use of power and water. Below are a few different ways you can live a green life going into 2021.
- Use reusable items.
One of the tenets of green living is to create as little waste as possible. This means reusing as many items as you can. Keeping in mind that you need to make sure that such reuse is sanitary for you and your family, start to look for those household items which can be used multiple times. This can also help to save you money in the long run.
This can include using reusable shopping bags, organic wool dryer balls, straws, and coffee/ tea cups., For example, reusable shopping bags are a healthier, and more green alternative to plastic bags. Plastics bags are used in the billions each year around the world. These bags begin their lives as fossil fuels and end up as deadly waste in landfills and the ocean, which contributes even further to the pollution to the planet. Birds also often mistake shredded plastic bags for food, which fills their stomachs with toxic debris.
Dryer balls may seem less important, but they can actually help you save on energy and eliminate your use of single-use dryer sheets. Wool dryer balls lower your dry-time, which means you run your energy-heavy dryer for less time, which means you’re greener. Saying no to single-use dryer sheets means you’re putting less waste in landfills. Dryer balls are also great for those with sensitive skin because they soften your laundry without perfumes or static cling.
Purchasing reusable items such as reusable shopping bags can help offset such negative effects of plastic bags. In many cases, you can get free reusable bags at fundraisers, and different events throughout the U.S. Stores sell them also for pretty decent prices.
- Switch to solar energy.
Solar energy is a renewable energy source that can be pretty helpful in your quest for going green in 2021. At its core, solar power is energy from the sun that is converted into thermal or electrical energy. Technology with a solar focus can harness this energy for a variety of uses. These uses can include generating electricity, providing light or a comfortable interior environment, and heating water for domestic use.
Solar energy is also great for the environment. It’s a clean and green source of energy, and helps to reduce your carbon footprint. Solar energy doesn’t pollute nature, and it doesn’t release any greenhouse gases into the environment. The other great thing about solar energy is that is self-sufficient, and installing solar panels (with the assistance of licensed professionals) can be a simple process. In addition to this, there are companies like Loanpal which can help with providing loans for making your home solar energy capacity.
- Create an outdoor garden or buy indoor greenery.
Planting a garden is a big way to go green. Producing vegetables and fruits in a garden not only contributes to the overall health of the environment, but it can also provide you with a local food source. This can help you with your own health, in addition to helping you to save money. Imagine not having to go to the grocery store for your favorite vegetables and fruits? You can grow your own tomatoes, carrots, lettuce, strawberries, Senecio rowleyanus (a string of pearls), blueberries, and even oranges at your own home.
This will also allow you an opportunity to compost your own waste. According to the U.S. agency, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), approximately 22% of the solid waste that enters landfills is food. In addition to this, gardening in your backyard has many other benefits for the planet. When you grow food without pesticides and herbicides, this cuts down on air and water pollution. Secondly, there is less fossil fuel, because you won’t need to and truck your greens across the United States.
Not only being aesthetically pleasing, creating a green space in your home can be helpful with going green. In addition to creating an outdoor garden, you can create greenery in your home which can also help with consuming carbon dioxide. Pick up a set of indoor hanging plants or potted plants to add to the living room or dining room of your home.
Some of the best hanging plants that you can add to your indoor garden are a bird’s nest fern, air plant, staghorn fern, arrowhead plant, chlorophytum comosum, maidenhair fern, or a pitcher plant. Provide the indoor garden planets with direct sunlight, indirect sunlight, an artificial bright light, clean water, and a green thumb. These can help you to go green in no time at all even as a first-time plant owner.
- Use green transportation.
Automobiles are one of the greatest contributors to the poor air health of our planet. As cars burn gasoline they produce pollutants. Even when we pump gasoline into our cars, these gasoline fumes escape into the air. Automobiles emit carbon monoxide when the carbon in fuel doesn’t burn completely. In addition to this, a car’s exhaust emits hydrocarbons, a toxic compound of hydrogen and carbon. All of these pollutants at the end of the day contribute nearly one-fifth of all United States emissions.
There are several ways that you can cut back on this. If you still need a vehicle, look into buying electric cars, or automobiles that are more eco-friendly. Once you find a more green-friendly auto, find a place to store your vehicle, like a vehicle storage unit. If a home garage isn’t available and you want to keep the vehicle, a storage unit is an excellent choice for vehicle storage. This can be an economical, money-saving route to go, as we know that cheap storage units are easier to find than a home with a driveway or a garage.
If possible, look into carpooling which saves on costs and the number of emissions which are being put out into the world. If it’s safe to do so, and your kids are old enough, think about having your children walk or ride their bikes to school, and to friends’ houses. You can also look into using public transportation if your area offers it. Many public transportation services actually promote being a healthier and greener alternative to driving your own automobile.
- Opt-out of junk mail.
Who here doesn’t like junk mail? Raise your hand. Now that about 100 percent of people reading this article have raised their hands, let’s find out how opting out of junk mail can help you go green. As explained in the book Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair with Trash, the energy used to create and distribute junk mail in the United States for one day could heat 250,000 homes.
Junk mail is useless and is also waste when it comes to printing and the transportation needed to get this paper to you. How many trees have been chopped down to create junk mail which will be thrown away? It’s pretty sad to think about. Opting out of junk mail is a good idea when trying to find ways to go green.