Our dying planet needs your help, as not many seem to care. Options for environmentally conscious citizens seem to get more expensive and difficult by the day.
To save this dying planet, follow these 15 easy steps, which are not only simple, but also make a visible difference.
Buy Re-Usable Coffee Cups
Such a simple thing to do that can also save a heap of money! Regular coffee cups are often non-recyclable due to the small layer of wax within them.
Re-usable coffee cups can usually be purchased anywhere mugs and drinkware are sold and many cafés sell them.
Most establishments reduce the price of their drinks when you take your cup in; it’s a great way to encourage people to buy them. Make a coffee at home and bring it in to work, and when your next coffee craving hits you have your cup with you!
If you’re environmentally savvy, you know that glass is the way to go. It may break easily, but it will last a lot longer. When you’re finished with your glass cup it can be easily melted down and made into something else.
Recycle Plastic Bags
Many grocers no longer supply plastic bags—unless you don’t mind spending a little extra.
Recycle any bags you receive from other stores, use a tote bag, or purchase a shopping bag. These can often be stored down into a smaller size and sit in your purse for your next shop.
Many chain grocers still use thin plastic bags for produce. When not disposed of properly, these bags can make their way into our oceans, harming precious sea-life, and decaying our dying planet. Reuse these bags for future produce, keeping them within your car for a later shop. Alternatively, you can use these bags to line bins and pet trays, or any other small use.
Turn Appliances off Standby
This one is incredibly easy, and it saves you money immediately!
After using appliances, turn them off at the wall instead of just leaving them on standby. Use this method for your kettle, dishwasher, toaster, washing machine, dryer, television, and chargers.
This is a small effort that the environment (and your back pocket) will love you for!
Donate Your Clothes Instead of Dumping
The fashion industry ensures this dying planet continues to die as it makes a killing off of the supposed trends that are constantly changing. When these trends pass, thousands of dollars worth of clothing can sit in your closet untouched.
Do not dump these clothes, instead donate them to charity stores, or sell them online. Selling them online ensures that they will go to a great home, plus you can regain the money you spent on that top you only wore once!
Be mindful that not every item of clothing is appropriate to gift to charity. If you wouldn’t give it to a friend, don’t give it to charity. Torn and damaged goods are no use to these places, and will end up in landfill.
Purchase Clothing from Op Shops and Charity Stores
Now that everyone is donating their clothes to charity stores due to Marie Kondo’s methods, buy them up!
Trends come back in to fashion, and monochrome looks are always in. Look for pieces that can be worn through a number of seasons, and multiple looks. Jeans, knits, and great shoes are always in style.
Save Paper by Not Printing as Many Items
In this digital age, who uses paper anymore?
Many items are going electronic, which not only saves time, but also space in your purse (everything’s on your phone!) and potential waste in the future.
Many stores now offer to email your receipts, gift cards can be purchased and redeemed electronically, and even your mail can be sent via email.
Purchase movie tickets online, benefit from card-less cash, and store your transport tickets on your phone.
Just make sure you always have a full battery!
Purchase Second Hand Crockery
While you’re shopping for your clothes at those charity shops, browse their crockery range.
Mugs, glasses, and plates can be bought second-hand, and will only require a wash before use. Often these items are given to charity stores as wedding gifts that were never used and will still be in their boxes, untouched.
When taking these items home, keep in mind that dishwashers take less water than washing these items by hand—plus it’s somuch easier!
When purchasing a new dishwasher, look for the litres of water they take—the less water, the bigger the saving.
Use Public Transport or Carpool
Younger generations that care about the dying planet are ditching their cars to benefit from their city’s public transport.
If you live in the city, or in the suburbs, trains and busses run regularly and go via popular routes.
Make sure to plan your route ahead of time, and be aware of any disruptions.
For anyone who does not benefit from public transport, carpooling is another way to save money on petrol, and is a more social start to the day. Join a friend from work, a parent, or someone who travels the same route.
Make a great playlist to kick off your morning, and tailor it to the season, upcoming holiday, or weather.
Place a Bucket in Your Shower
This is a quirky idea that gained traction in Australia during the drought.
Placing an empty bucket in you shower will catch the unused water, to be used later when watering plants, cleaning, and even when washing pets. Use natural soaps to prevent harming pets or plants in anyway.
If you’re not into showers, bathwater can also be used.
Do Not Leave the Water Running!
On the subject of showers, be certain you are using your time effectively.
Small tasks like brushing your teeth and cleaning your face waste the water that washes down the drain. Even with your bucket in the shower, they can easily overflow.
Make sure to keep these small tasks to the sink, it may not save time, but it will extend the life of the planet, and reduce your water bill!
Close the Blinds
You cover your body in layers to prevent heat escaping, why not do this for your home?
When cold weather hits, make sure you windows are closed, and blinds or curtains are covering them. This will prevent any heat from escaping.
In warm weather, close your blinds to prevent hot sun streaming in, and close your windows and doors when the air conditioner in on.
Pick up Rubbish
When on your morning run, walking to work, or while walking you dog, it is almost certain that you would have spotted rubbish along the way.
Instead of walking by, pick it up! Make an effort to pick up one piece of rubbish a day for a week, then two pieces, then three.
It can be dirty, but by using a small produce bag or tissue, you can save your skin and the environment. Plus, it dramatically improves the appearance of your parks and walkways.
Use Tap Water
This may ruffle the feathers of some readers, but bottled water is not the way to go. An easy alternative is to purchase a bottle, to be used again and again at the kitchen sink or the company’s water cooler.
I know what you’re thinking, not all water tastes the same. An easy solution is to purchase a pack of natural, charcoal water filters or a bottle with a filter in the lid.
No one said saving this dying planet was delicious.
Bring Food from Home
Plastic wrap and foil can be more harm than good. Purchase a re-usable container to handle your food. These containers come in glass and plastic, and can save a ridiculous amount of money.
Meal prep is another smart way to ensure your meals are ready for the week ahead, and is an inexpensive option, as purchasing your food from the supermarket is always less expensive than purchasing ready-made.