The environment is a hot topic and why shouldn’t it be? Perhaps you, like so many people out there are looking to make an impact. Maybe you’ve even made one of your 2019 goals to be just a little bit more environmentally friendly. If that’s the case, we’ve got a quick list of things that you might consider doing to make that happen.
Separate your trash
Apparently, the average American uses 4.4 pounds of trash, per day. Which, if you think about it, is absolutely ridiculous. Globally, we all use somewhere around 2.6 pounds of trash. Also seems to be a lot.
If you’re lucky enough to live in a city that makes recycling a priority like I do, one way to reduce your trash output and be a tad bit more environmentally friendly is to separate your garbage. That means putting out your recycling, separating your compost and throwing out things that are actually trash.
I use these compostable bags to make sure that I don’t get all of that icky food on me.
Reduce your straw intake
Plastic straws produce a lot of garbage per year, apparently, Americans throw out 500 million per year. Let’s do that one more time: 500 million per year. If you’re concerned about your straw output and are wanting to be a bit more environmentally friendly, consider getting some metal straws. I got some last year and they’re amazing. Not only do I feel better about my environmental consciousness, but they keep my drink colder!
The straws that I got (and love) came from Amazon and are under $10.
Replace your chopsticks
Much like you can replace your disposable straws, you can replace your disposable chopsticks and be a little bit more environmentally friendly. Metal chopsticks are all the rage — okay, technically I don’t know if this is true but let’s just go with it. Metal chopsticks are washable, reusable and super stylish (again, not sure that it’s true). But it’s a great way for you to start your 2019 “a little bit more environmental” campaign.
You can get metal chopsticks on Amazon for under $10.
Stop using paper towels
Paper towels are kind of a waste. Seriously, they are. Not only are they a bit of an environmental waste but the cost money. If you use a roll of paper towel a month, replacing your paper towel with washable towels saves you around $35 a year. Now, $35 doesn’t seem like a lot, but every little bit counts.
Wash your clothes with cold water
About 90 percent of the energy that it takes to wash clothes actually comes from the heating of the water, so it would seem that washing your clothes in water is more environmentally friendly. I’ll be completely honest, I accidentally started to wash my clothes with cold water because I didn’t realize how to work my washing machine properly (oops), but when I started to look into how to be just a tad bit more environmentally friendly I found out I was already being awesome. #GoMe
Plus, there’s cold water specific detergent.
Stick with showers
This is one of those points where you should do what I say, not what I do… because I never take showers. Baths are my thing, baby. Except that when you have a bath it takes somewhere around 70 gallons of water to fill a tub, in contrast, if you take a quick 5 to 10-minute shower you’re looking at around 10 to 25 gallons of water. And voila, suddenly you’re a bit more environmentally friendly.
Stop using paper
I’ve reduced my paper usage a lot over the past few years. I used to be so bad for using copious amounts of paper that I wrote on the never, ever (and I mean ever) referenced again. But then I got rid of my crappy printer (which honestly never actually worked properly) and got myself one of those fancy iPads with the Apple pencils and now my paper usage is at an all-time low! Though, I admit to still using the occasional monogrammed list pad.
Being more environmentally friendly
No one’s going to hand you a Nobel Peace Prize for taking a short shower, drinking out of metal straws and separating your garbage. But if you’re looking for small things that you can do without having to change appliances or make drastic lifestyle changes, then these things are for you. There are a lot of people who likely disagree with this statement, but at the end of the day, who cares: every little bit counts when it comes to being more environmentally friendly.