Let’s face it, when it comes to being more mindful of the environment in your day-to-day life, your heart may be in the right place, but sometimes being green just seems too complicated.
In reality, eco-friendly habits don’t always involve big measures like building a compost bin or installing solar panels. In fact, it’s the small, frequent habits that can really add up to make a big difference. And thankfully, these are often easy to change.
With that in mind, here are five easy ways to embark on some everyday eco-friendly habits:
1. Use eco-friendly household cleaners. Made with natural ingredients that won’t harm the environment, you can find these cleaners for every area of your home, from the laundry to the kitchen to the bathroom. Do a little research online and you’ll find some recipes for easy homemade cleaners as well.
2. Keep your oven at the right temperature. Oven temperatures can vary, and an oven that is hotter than the desired setting can waste energy and jeopardize your culinary results. Use an oven thermometer for accurate temperature monitoring.
3. Get a reusable straw. Plastic straws cannot be recycled so invest in one made of stainless steel or silicone. Many come with a carrying case for easy transport, and can be hooked onto backpacks and belt loops.
4. Do away with plastic bottles. A quality beverage bottle improves your life while eliminating waste and conserving resources. Vacuum-insulated stainless steel bottles keep beverages both hot and cold for extended periods of time.
5. Say goodbye to pods. Coffee pods and capsules generate hundreds of millions of pounds of packaging waste each year. Most varieties of today’s coffee makers offer single-brew options using coffee grounds, so search around for a model that suits your needs. After brewing, toss your coffee grounds in your garden as a natural fertilizer.
6. Transition from single-use plastic. Many cities and towns already have banned the use of single-use plastic bags, but if yours already hasn’t, be ahead of the game and invest in reusable grocery bags and keep a stash handy in your car so that they’re available for spontaneous trips to the grocery store.