The health of the planet is at the forefront of most people’s minds, and more and more people are starting to question their own way of living. There are so many little things that damage the earth, and they’re probably so minute that you don’t even realise you’re doing it. Lots of businesses are now taking a greener approach and are making some big changes. Things like ditching single-use plastic is one of the most impactful changes they can make. For example, swapping out plastic containers for paper sandwich bags can really make a difference and it doesn’t harm the customer. So, if you want to make similar changes, keep reading and discover 5 simple steps you can take to be more eco-friendly in 2022.
1. Reuse Instead Of Recycle
Although recycling is better than just throwing something away, it does require a lot of energy to be done. So, a better way to conserve energy is to reuse products that can be used more than once. Things like bottles, food tubs, etc don’t need to be recycled instantly and can in fact be used again multiple times until they need to be disposed of. Coffee cups are one of the biggest contributors to landfills, and a lot of the time they can’t even be recycled. In this case, it’s best to bring your own that you can reuse again and again to stop all those single-use coffee cups ending up in landfills for years to come. Some cafés even offer you money off when you bring your own cup, so it can pay off in the long run too! Try taking your own food into the office that’s in your own reusable tubs too. This will prevent you from running to the store every lunchtime and buying things in single-use plastic that might not even be recyclable. These little changes can make all the difference and really help you lower your carbon footprint.
2. Change Up How You Travel
Travel is super important when it comes to being more eco-friendly. If you think about how often you travel by car and how much petrol you’re using up, it’s actually quite terrifying. This isn’t to say that you should never travel by car, as sometimes it’s unavoidable. But there are times when you could take an alternative means of travel such as a bus or train to really help cut down on your CO2 emissions. Carpooling is great for those who work in the office still, as it reduces the number of cars on the road each day drastically. Another top tip is to walk any journey that takes less than 5 minutes in the car. It may take you a few minutes longer on foot, but you’ll be helping the environment and improving your health at the same time.
3. Be More Energy Conscious
We all need energy to live our lives, so it’s impossible to cut it out completely. However, there are small things you can do that will really make a difference. For instance, make sure you turn everything off at the switch when you’re not using it, as it will still be eating away at your energy consumption if the plug is still on. Always do a quick sweep of your home before going out or to bed, and you’ll be able to spot any appliances that have been left on. Another top tip is to switch to LED light bulbs as these use a much lower amount of energy compared to regular ones. Try to make sure that you’re more efficient with your heating as well, as leaving it on accidentally while you’re out of the house wastes so much energy. Use your heating when you need it and try not to whack it all the way up all the time. Instead, try having a more consistent lower temperature that keeps an even heat going throughout your home. The best thing you can do is to always switch things off when you’re not using them, no matter what they are. This way you’ll be saving the planet and money!
4. Use Chemical-Free Cleaning Products
The majority of cleaning products actually have very harmful chemicals in them that when they enter our ecosystem, do unlimited amounts of damage. The best way to combat this is to take a more natural approach and use chemical-free cleaning products. Things like white vinegar, lemon juice, and baking soda are fantastic for cleaning your house and they’re also a lot cheaper too. Natural cleaning products can be made at home as well as being found ready-made in eco-friendly stores. You’ll find that they leave your home smelling much nicer as well because they won’t have such a harsh chemical scent.
5. Stop Throwing Away Clothes
Although we all outgrow some of the clothes in our wardrobes, throwing them away should never be your first option. In fact, it should never be an option at all! Clothing and shoes take years and years to degrade, so as we speak, the landfills are becoming clogged up with them. Instead, try asking if any of your close friends and family would like them, then if not, the next step is to try charity shops. You can also sell them online if you want to make a bit of money off of them too. If your clothes aren’t suitable to be re-worn, you still shouldn’t throw them away. Try upcycling them into cleaning rags or seek out a local textile recycling centre. There are so many little projects you can do with old clothes, that throwing them away just seems like a waste. So, try and keep the landfills free from clothing, and stop putting them in the bin!
Being more eco-friendly isn’t all that difficult. In fact, it’s actually very easy to live a sustainable lifestyle in this day and age, you just have to think about things a little more. Sometimes it’s the smallest changes that make the biggest difference to the planet too. Things like taking the train instead of driving to work or switching up your cleaning products are really easy to do, but they have a positive impact on the environment. So, don’t wait until it’s too late and start living an eco-friendly life now!