One of the biggest ways to live sustainably is to do what you can to reduce your carbon footprint! Global Warming may be a topic that has various opinions, but documentation shows that the earth's atmosphere is slowly warming overall, changing weather patterns and eco zones, including oceanic. Living sustainably means doing what we can to preserve the earth's natural resources and being stewards of what we have and consume. Below are 9 incredible ways to live sustainably for the rest of your life!
1. Eat Organic and Local
Local, organic food is natural and free of harmful chemicals, additives, GMO's, and pesticides. All are harmful to the environment, disrupt ecosystems and build up toxins in the body when consumed regularly. Because organic food can be costly, know the ones that contain the most chemicals and pesticides (i.e. the "dirty dozen") and buy those organically. This is one of the best ways to live sustainably!
2. Farmer's Markets
During the summer, local farmers gather in stands to sell their fresh produce, meats, and other goodies. Usually farmer's markets are less expensive than organic food purchased in stores. So, make sure to take advantage of your local farmer's market! Their food is also more fresh and tastes amazing! My son and I just visited one in our area and he couldn't get enough of their boysenberry samples!
3. Buy Fair Trade and Local Goods
Another great way to reduce your carbon footprint is to think globally. Where are your products coming from? I would guess that most are shipped from overseas. Not only does that expend a lot of fossil fuel, but a lot of times clothing or goods made in foreign counties are in unethical circumstances. As much as possible, check labels for products Made in USA!
Recycling is super important in living a sustainable life! So many things can be recycled. It's hard not to feel guilty throwing away a box or a can. It's even convenient now to sort your trash and recyclables in different bins for trash day! You can also cash in your plastic and glass bottles at a local grocery store. Recycling keeps us from being wasteful so remember to do it regularly.
5. Walk and Bike More
We all love the convenience of our cars! But when the weather is nice, try reducing the money you spend on gas by walking and biking more. It's great exercise and it decreases the amount of gas you use, and the emissions you make, daily.
6. Public Transit
If you live in a city with a great public transit system, please use it! It's a wonderful way to get around, enjoy some alone time to think or read, and most importantly it saves on gas consumption. We are lucky to live right next to a public rail that my husband takes everyday to and from work! It actually saves us quite a bit of gas and money for parking.
7. Hybrid Cars
Hybrid cars are becoming more and more advanced! Some are even fully electric which is just awesome. If you have the means to afford a hybrid or fully electric car, then you should definitely do it! It's a wonderful way to reduce carbon emissions and it's also convenient to not have to pay for gas as often or at all!
8. Reuse and Repurpose
There are many household items that can be reused or repurposed. Clothing is a huge one! If you don't know how to use a sewing machine, you might have a friend who knows how! You can make simple alterations to clothing which can repurpose them or allow them to be wearable again! Also remember to donate your unwearable items - someone will appreciate your old items for new. You could also have a clothing swap party with your friends. It's a great way to get new clothing without spending any money! Other things can be repurposed too like shopping bags, gift bags, shoe boxes, empty jars, etc.
9. Cut down on Electricity Use
Fortunately there are alternatives to the common use of coal as energy. Coal is an unclean source when burned, causing more carbon dioxide to be released the atmosphere. If renewable energy isn't an option for you (like wind or solar) then you can do your part by reducing the amount of electricity you use in your home! Take quicker showers, have a laundry day, keep the heat lower in the house and use layers to keep warm, etc.! It does make a difference, especially of most of us implement this concept of living sustainably.
It's important for us to appreciate and protect the world around us! A great way to do that is by reducing our carbon footprint and living more resourcefully. What are some different ways to live sustainably that you practice in your daily life? Do you have any other thoughts on climate change and global warming?