The health of our planet depends on each of us doing our part to keep the environment clean.
Below are some tips and resources to help get you started!
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5 Tips to Help Keep the Environment Clean - Plus a Bonus!
1. Use Less Paper
Did you know that the average person generates over 1 pound of paper waste every day? Fortunately, today's technology can help us use less paper.
- Share materials electronically whenever possible.
- If you have to print, go green by purchasing recycled printer paper, and always print double-sided.
- Take it one step further and use paperless notebooks to take notes.
A lot of our readers have had success with the Rocketbook. They rave about this wired notebook that is erasable and reusable. It looks and feels like a regular notebook but is an environmentally friendly alternative!
It can even store your notes in Google Drive, One Note, and Drop Box.
Ready to try it for yourself?
Rocketbook is available on Amazon. There are a ton of success stories and it is one of our favorite products.
2. Reduce Your Energy Consumption
Reducing your energy consumption can help keep the environment clean while benefiting you personally. For example, using less electricity can save you money by decreasing your electric bill. Your CO2 emissions will also decrease.
A simple way to reduce your energy consumption is by turning off the lights when you are not in a room. Utilize natural light from the windows in your home or apartment instead of relying on electricity.
Get Rid of Vampire Energy
Another way to reduce your energy consumption is to eliminate something called "vampire energy." Check out the infographic below from Payless Power.
Vampire energy is the energy that electronic devices use when plugged in unnecessarily (either because they are turned off or aren't in use). Everything connected to an outlet draws energy from the grid and costs you money. It also puts unnecessary stress on the environment.
To help keep the environment clean, you can start by unplugging electronic devices that aren't in use. You can disconnect your cell phone, laptop, coffee machine, microwave, television, or printer.
If manually unplugging your devices is too difficult, it might be helpful to set up your electronics so that they turn themselves off.
Automate Your Energy Savings
Homes, businesses, and offices can automatically save energy by using smart plugs.
Smart plugs can save energy automatically by turning off devices such as lights, fans, and appliances.
Most smart plugs allow you to control your devices from anywhere using an app on your phone.
Use Energy Efficient Products
Another way to reduce your energy consumption is to use energy-efficient products.
For instance, the light bulbs in your home or office are a great place to start.
Other energy-efficient products that you can explore using include windows, refrigerators, washers & dryers and air conditioning units.
3. Avoid Single Use Plastics
Single-use plastics such as water bottles and disposable bags hurt the environment by polluting the earth's land and water.
Use Eco-Friendly Water Bottles
Did you know that in the United States, 60 million plastic water bottles are thrown into landfills every day?
Our readers like the Hydro Cell bottles below.
Offices might have success by removing all single-use cups from the break room or cafeteria areas. Employees will start bringing their own reusable bottles and mugs rather than go thirsty.
Use Eco-Friendly Tote Bags
Using eco-friendly bags to carry lunch, groceries, and store items can help keep the environment clean as well. Some examples are below.
4. Recycle Waste Products
Placing the appropriate items in the recycling bin is a small action that has a big impact.
How to Recycle Effectively
Start by having the appropriate waste collection bins in your home and office. Fortunately, recycling bins are inexpensive and don’t have to take up a lot of space.
For instance, there are recycling bins that are light-weight and collapsible which makes them easy to use.
Once you have the correct bins available, it is just a matter of getting people to use them.
In your household you could encourage your family members or roommates to recycle at meal times. It is important to make this a daily habit so that it becomes muscle memory.
For young children it can be helpful to praise the action when you seem them utilizing the recycling bin. For older kids and adults it can help to explain the impacts of recycling and describe how it hurts the planet when we don’t recycle.
This short, family friendly, video below could be helpful.
Provide Clear Instructions
For businesses and offices, it might take a little more coaxing to encourage people to help keep the environment clean through recycling.
According to Stanford University, people are more likely to recycle if there are clear instructions on how to do it along with an urgent message that describes the negative consequences of not recycling.
An example of helpful instructions and messages that you can print out for your employees or co-workers are below. It might be useful to place these above the trash can and recycling bins to spur people to recycle.
Source: City of Portland, Maine
Source: Panda Environmental Services
5. Make Your Commute Eco-Friendly
Commuting is a necessary part of life. However, there are some options that individuals can try that could decrease their environmental impact and help keep the environment clean.
For instance, it might make sense to carpool with family, friends, or co-workers. That way, there is only one car on the road instead of three or four.
A lot of couples or family members use this method if their jobs are relatively close together.
Another potential option is to use public transportation. This is an easy option for people that live in large cities with robust train systems. Cities usually have bus lines, subways, or lightrails that aid in commuting in an environmentally friendly manner.
Other Eco-Friendly Commuting Options
Some people have found success biking or even skateboarding to work as they combine their commuting time with their exercise time.
The most important thing is figuring out what works best for you, your job, and your family.
6. Use Bamboo Products!
Try using products made of bamboo instead of traditional plastic or paper.
- Bamboo Toothbrushes are biodegradable and don't use any plastic!
- Bamboo Paper products are carbon free and don't hurt trees!
Comment below and let us know how you keep the environment clean!
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