It’s Earth Day today, an international day set aside to honor the earth and encourage each another in ways we can take a greener approach to living. Every step we take toward greener living–no matter how small it may seem–is a step towards less pollution and greater health for our environment. If you’re ready to move your habits in the right direction, here are 5 ways to be greener at home without giving up all of our creature comforts.
Buy Fewer Single-Use Plastics
Reusable straws are affordable and available everywhere. The same goes for reusable cold liquid storage and insulated hot liquids flasks. It’s easier than ever to take your water everywhere or get a coffee refill without having to purchase more single-use bottles and cups.
Get into Grocery Totes
Some states and municipalities have already enacted bans of single-use plastic shopping bags and more legislation is in the works. Whether or not a ban is coming to your area soon, get into a habit of shopping with reusable tote bags to make purchases easier to load and carry and keep plastic out of our waterways and landfills.
Reduce Hot Water Use for Laundry
Historically, we’ve trusted only hot water to clean our laundry. But modern-day laundry detergents are made to do their dirty work quite well in cold water. Sanitizing things like cloth diapers should still be done in hot water but switching to cold water for other items will still remove stains and will reduce your energy costs. (Check your detergent label to be sure of course.)
Make Homemade Cleaners
It’s easy to make your own cleaning solutions with affordable, easy to find ingredients and a recipe sourced from the internet (or great grandma). Before cleansers and sprays lined our store shelves, people had to clean their homes with natural, homemade products. They worked! And they were less harmful to humans and the environment.
Invest in ENERGY STAR Appliances
When it’s time replace old appliances, look for ENERGY STAR labeled products. These refrigerators, air conditioners, ovens, microwaves, dishwashers, clothes washers, dryers, and other appliances meet strict energy efficiency requirements for reduced electricity usage. That reduction saves you money on your electric bill while reducing harmful emissions into the environment.