Going green is as easy as 1, 2, 3 . . . 4, 5, 6; you get where we’re going with this. Chances are at least one will resonate with you and we guarantee that each idea will help you live a more eco-friendly life.
So here is our short list of 20 ideas that can help you go green:
1. Unplug things
Don’t leave the power brink plugged in after you’re done charging your phone, laptop, etc. Even when not actively providing power to your device, chargers still draw a current. Either unplug it or use a power strip and flip the switch to “off” after you’re done.
2. Plastic bags
How can a world wide 4 trillion plastic bags each year be wrong? Easy. One use plastic is a terrible idea
. Rarely recycled and a waste of energy
. Used for a second, around for millennia. What if Donald Trump was around for 996 more years? Maybe use some cloth bags instead?
3. Nix plastic bottles
It's convenient to hit a vending machine when you’re thirsty. But those single use plastic bottles? Here’s a live stream of a plastic bottle decomposing.
Is your temporary thirst worth waiting 450 years for it to disappear?
4. Get a reusable bottle
We make a stainless steel
one that will probably last you a decade. It’s fully insulated and will keep drinks piping hot for a day and ice cold for twice that.
5. Use cloth napkins
In your home, replacing paper napkins with cloth makes sense. They are just as hygienic and don’t require harsh chemicals
to make. Try to find some 100% organic cotton ones but most reusable napkins are an improvement over disposables.
6. Use cold water for washing
When laundering those cloth napkins or clothes save some money and lower your energy needs by using washing machines and detergents optimized for cold or “eco-warm” settings. You probably have access to one or both. All you need to do is follow the directions.
7. Take shorter (and cooler) showers
Don’t scrimp on scrubbing but water is a precious resource. Take a page from the folks in drought prone Cape Town, South Africa who decided to time their showers with a song.
8. Fix leaks
Faucets shouldn’t drip and, while good for you, excessive running is bad for toilets. Check out that dripping faucet. Maybe it just needs a new rubber gasket. Maybe only the float in the tank needs some fine adjustment. Both are easy and cheap to fix while putting a stop on water waste.
9. Walk more
Even if it’s just to get outside. Turning off the TV or peeling yourself away from the internet (this list will still be here when you return) means you won’t be using electricity. You’ll also be improving your health!
10. Eat less (meat)
We know you like how it tastes but that burger comes with HUGE interest payments. Pollution, greenhouse gas emissions, animal cruelty, bacterial contamination, increased risk of heart disease . . . there are plenty of reasons to not eat meat.
11. Eat slow meat
If you are going to get some animal protein, why not save up and splurge on the good stuff? Support your local food co-op’s, farmers, and restaurateurs who serve slow food. (i.e., locally grown and raised foodstuffs cooked by people you can meet)
12. Slow down
Your food isn’t the only thing that could benefit from a change of pace. Drive at a reasonable speed. Plan ahead so you’re not driving stop and go. Many newer automobiles have an eco setting that incentivizes driving this way. Make it a game that you play with your kids. Try to beat your high score of low impact driving.
You should to slow down too. We all need moments to find our center. With all the pushing and pulling in every direction, slowing down and thinking about what’s truly important is, well, important. Sit in a quiet room or go to a local church (even if you aren’t a member) or sit under a tree - which worked for the Buddha. You can meditate in many ways in many places and it will benefit you
and the planet.
14. Turn off the lights
Your Dad was right. When you’re meditating or if you’re leaving a room. Why waste the electricity?
15. Use the sun!
Open the blinds and get some natural light in your home. Why pay for fake light when you can get the real thing for free?
16. Plant a tree
Or a flower, or a shrub, or some herbs. Both or either fresh basil on your windowsill or a beautiful cedar growing in your backyard would be nice right? Plants are great to have around so plant some. We plant a tree
every time someone places an order in our marketplace. Join us by planting something yourself.
17. Buy organic
There’s nothing wrong with choosing conventional carrots over organic varieties. Any kind of vegetable is better than a factory farmed piece of meat. But organic options are increasingly on par with conventional ones. Why is organic considered better? Because there’s next to no exposure of the land or crop to synthetic fertilizers or pesticides. If you can afford organic it’s worth it, especially for your kids' developing minds
18. Buy less
He who dies with the most toys certainly doesn’t win. Stamp collections, antiquarian books, vinyl records and the like are one thing. But novelty garbage wrapped in plastic is another. There’s plenty in the middle - just think for a few more moments before you buy something. Ask, “Do I have an actual need for x.”
19. Borrow more
Use your local library. Instead of owning a pickup truck whose payload capacity you only use once or twice a year, borrow one on Touro. You can even try out an electric car
and see if that might be for you.
20. Appreciate what you have
New things don’t make you happy. Advertisers are paid to convince you of the opposite. About the only thing you can buy that truly brings you happiness is a dog. And even then, you can probably find a swell rescue who’d love to snug with you.
We’re sure you could come up with 20 more. If you do, email us. We take suggestions too!
Co-founder & CEO
Co-Founder and CEO of agood company. A serial e-commerce entrepreneur, and a father of three. Have worked in e-commerce for more than a decade. Mindless consumption-activist.