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  • Kelly Fountain

How to Be More Sustainable 101

Updated: Dec 8, 2021

Ways for you and I to live a more sustainable lifestyle:

At the moment, we are producing resources, using energy and creating waste at a rate which isn't sustainable. In order for us to live a sustainable lifestyle we should try to have as little of an impact on the Earth as possible, while also trying to replace the resources you do use. This leads to environmental issues, such as pollution and climate change, which cause harm to the environment, wildlife and humans. By making some small changes to your lifestyle, you can reduce your carbon footprint and help to tackle these issues.


Sustainability and saving energy helps reduce the harm to the environment

Save Energy Sustainability starts at home and ultimately starts with ourselves. By using less energy, we can help to reduce carbon emissions. Try following these energy saving tips to help you use less energy. Turn off your lights when they’re not needed; when you leave a room, leave it in darkness. Take this even further and combat simple things such as switching off stand-by mode and unplugging appliances. The energy wasted from leaving things plugged in is known as “vampire energy use” which can increase your energy use, and cost, by 5% every month. Save money and energy by unplugging computers, TV’s, phone chargers, microwaves and more. Additionally, turn down the heating or install a smart thermostat to reduce inefficient heating systems. Consider using energy efficient windows in your home and proper insulation in your walls and roofs for long term proactive solutions to both energy and financial waste.


Recycling is a great way to be sustainable and help the environment

Waste not, want not! Single-use products, particularly plastic ones, tend to end up in landfills and the ocean, causing harm to wildlife and the environment. Prevent this by choosing to use reusable and eco-friendly alternatives instead. Instead of buying a new bottle of water every few trips to the gym, invest in a reusable thermoflask; not only will it help prevent the use of countless disposable plastic bottles but the water tastes much better and stays nice and cold! Instead of buying a plastic wrapped sandwich every lunchtime at work, meal prep with reusable containers. Instead of asking for a new plastic bag at the grocery store on every visit, grab yourself a reusable tote. According to the EPA, the average American will produce almost 6lbs of trash every single day, recycling a mere 1.5lbs of this. There are many creative ways of recycling your rubbish to reduce this phenomenally high amount of waste. Glass and metal jars are easily recycled and can make great containers for bulk pantry items, desk organizers or bathroom containers. Recycle newspapers, grocery bags and magazines as wrapping paper. Cut old towels, clothes and bedding up into washable cleaning rags, or better yet, give them to charity.


growing your own food can help reduce your environmental footprint

Food

Growing your own produce is a way you can ensure that there are no nasty pesticides ruining your health or the environment. It is also a way to ensure a huge reduction in fossil fuels which supermarkets rely on for transportation. Depending on the climate in which you live, there are several fruits, vegetables and herbs which can be grown with minimal tending. However, growing your own produce can also be time consuming, expensive and bad weather can yield a bad harvest. This method is not always feasible for those who live in cold, dark climates or for those with minimal space in built up areas with little sunlight. Buying locally grown produce can similarly cut down on fossil fuel use. As can buying fruits and vegetables which are in season; buying summer fruits in the cold depths of winter either means that the fruits have been imported or the fruits have been stored in huge freezers since they were picked in the summer. Either method creates an astronomical impact on the environment through the waste of energy resources. Once the food has been bought and cooked, try not to waste any; have you cooked too much rice with your curry? Use the leftovers for a quick and easy egg fried rice for your next meal. Made too much paella? Pack some up to take to work with you tomorrow. Made enough chilli con carne to feed the entire street? Portion it out into tubs and freeze them for the future. Have a cupboard and fridge full of vegetables which are about to turn moldy? Add them all together with some stock to make a healthy, hearty soup! There's never an excuse to waste food!

Man walking in New York City in efforts to be more sustainable

Transportation Drive less. Whether it’s taking public transport to work, walking to the local shops or taking your bike to visit your friends; drive less. Similarly to the actions you can take with a sustainable diet as mentioned above, it’s not only better for the environment, it’s better for your health and your bank balance too!

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