As we move ahead into a future affected by climate change, it is necessary that we adopt sustainable living and decrease our environmental impact. Green is the way to go if we want to have any chance at the survival of life on the planet. Be it our business or home, there is something we all can do. While scientists are busy looking for climate change solutions, here are small steps we all can take.
1. Reducing Environmental Impact With Efficient Energy Use
Do you leave your devices plugged in even when you are not using them? That’s not exactly saving any energy, you know. Producing electricity generates enormous amounts of greenhouse gas. And it is one of the leading causes of global warming. Find ways to reduce your carbon footprint and save energy.
Go for greener appliances and install energy-efficient systems. Shift to sustainable energy like solar and power. Not only will it reduce your environmental impact, but also bring you lower bills. And there are multiple state and local incentives available that make the installation of such systems affordable.
3. Save Water to Reduce Environmental Impact
Heating up water and processing wastewater uses up a lot of our resources and generates emissions as well. Keep the use of hot water to a minimum and repair all leaks. Aerated faucets, low-flow showerheads, and other devices can help you significantly reduce your water usage. Places like restaurants and hospitals use a higher percentage of hot water. But they can work towards heat recovery so that they can capture the energy from waste fluids to pre-heat water.
4. The 3 Rs: REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE
Your environmental footprint can be significantly lowered if you follow the three Rs. Reduce, reuse, recycle. Look for the tiniest ways to reduce your impact, reuse every resource available to you, and recycle what you can. Make a rewards program where participants bring in recyclables to earn certain rewards.
5. Less Travel, Less Consumption
If you have employees using private vehicles, encourage them to use public transportation. Or make carpools. With the current situation of the pandemic, most companies had to shift to a work from home model. If this trend can be continued wherever possible, it will significantly reduce our collective impact on the environment.
If your family of four has two or three cars, time to make some cuts! Would driving with a sibling be too bad if it means you get to save the world?
6. Buy Local to Reducing Your Environmental Impact
When you stick to local resources, the first reduction is in the energy wasted in transportation. And since the transportation cost is less for the vendor, you also get to save some bucks. Stick to local farmer markets and buy supplies from your nearest sources.
7. Plastic Alternatives
One of the man-made monsters is plastic, especially single-use plastic. But we have become so used to it that now we barely find a product without it. But studies have repeatedly shown the negative environmental impact of it. It does not decay, and even the ones that do take years to do so. So, what can you do instead?
There are multiple sustainable and cheap alternatives to plastics popping up.
Firstly, go for steel and bamboo bottles and ditch those plastic water bottles. And you can carry these to the store for refills. And if you must buy individual bottles from the store, stick to glass.
Secondly, plastic bags from grocery stores should also be avoided when possible. You can switch to reusable cloth bags. These are mostly made of cotton, which makes it biodegradable and recyclable.
If you travel frequently or use new plastic cutlery at work every day, you can switch to wooden and disposable cutlery sets. Find the FDA approved ones, and you can even end up contributing to a bigger cause. Most companies working with such green products to reduce our environmental impact often give a part of their profits to environmental organizations.
Even small but frequently bought items like toothbrushes and hairbrushes contribute significantly to the plastic problem. You can always find wooden alternatives that are eco-friendly and last longer.
If we can lower our consumption, it would go a long way in conserving our resources. Human demand is not going to end any time soon. But the earth cannot produce enough resources to keep up with our rate of consumption. With every recyclable item you buy and every step you take to reduce consumption, you are giving nature a tiny chance to cope up.
Are you ready to switch to a more sustainable life?