7 in 10 households in America class themselves as eco-friendly. This means they are making a conscious effort to reduce their impact on the world around them by consuming less, using greener energy, and reducing their carbon footprint.
But what exactly does it mean to "go green"? Going green basically means being environmentally aware. It's a choice to reduce your waste and the pollution you generate, so you're playing your part in supporting the health of the earth to sustain human life for longer.
Everything you do impacts the environment, both good and bad, but making positive changes can be much easier than you think. This post looks at some ways you can make your household more eco-friendly and sustainable by making easy swaps and simple changes to how you live your life
LED Light Bulbs
LED lights use up to 90% less energy than standard light bulbs; if you're going for an easy and inexpensive change, switching your light bulbs over to LED can reduce your energy consumption and save you money on your bills. The average customer can save around $200 annually by making this simple switch.
Ditch The Plastic
The average weight of plastic waste generated per person in the US annually is over 220 kg. When you multiply this by the number of people living in the US, this is a staggering amount. Doing your bit by reducing or eliminating plastic waste can make a massive difference. Use reusable shopping bags, avoid buying products wrapped in copious maps of plastic, stop using plastic wrap on food and use storage jars instead, and stop buying single-use plastic products like plates, cutlery, water bottles, etc., and opt for ones you can wash and reuse time and time again.
Electrify Your Commute
Switching your vehicle from a fuel to an electric model can help you to reduce emissions from driving almost instantly. These days, technology has advanced to allow electric cars to do more, drive for longer without charging, and be able to be charged faster making them more user-friendly. You book an electric car charger home installation service to help you charge your car at home and make it more convenient to drive without having to drive around to find charging points.
Upgrade Your Windows
Inefficient windows are one of the significant sources of heat loss in a home, and the more heat that is seeping through cracks in windows or doors, the higher your heating bills and the less energy efficient your home is. If you want to stop that 25% of your energy simply seeping through your windows, it might be time to invest in new dual pane windows that are more energy efficient and can not only be more sorry for your home but also help heat and cool your home correctly.
Recycle, Repurpose, Reclaim
Focus on recycling as much as possible, repurposing things you no longer need, and reclaim used goods to turn them into something else. Very few things cannot be reused or repurposed, but despite this, shocking amounts of trash end up in landfills each year the world over. Making an effort to recycle, reuse and donate items you no longer need or can use can help to extend their lifespan, making them more eco-friendly and reducing the need for new items to be made. If you do need to buy something, choose options you can upcycle; thrift stores, garage sales, and online ads can help you to find pieces you can upcycle. Or you can purchase from retailers or independent traders that use recycled or reclaimed materials to create new products. Be it dining tables using reclaimed wood, dressers that have been stripped and repainted, or turning your basic IKEA cabinets into something else entirely thanks to the many IKEA hacks online.
Suppose your mind automatically went to solar panels. In that case, if you're in a part of the US that would benefit from solar energy, you'll be surprised at how much you can save from maligning the type of investment. Plus, solar panel installation costs have been reduced by up to 70% in some states thanks to government funding and initiatives and lower costs.
But solar panels aren't your only solar option. You can choose solar lighting to help you reduce your lighting bills. There are solar fans for your attic to help circulate air and even solar water heaters that can offer you a more cost-effective method of heating your water. Find out what is available in our state where solar products are concerned, and look at how you can integrate them into your lifestyle.
If you want to get a headstart on tackling your contribution to the 300-plus tons of food waste produced each year, then composting can be a great place to start. 30% of the waste generated yearly is food waste, and a lot of food can be added to a compost bin to turn your trash into organic matter. You can then use this to help your plants grow or to fertilize your soil for healthier soil to benefit the local environment.
Buy Energy Efficient Appliances
Not everyone has the funds to replace all of their appliances at once, but when the time does come for you to replace your current ones, look for those with an Energy Star rating. This rating informs you as to the efficiency of the appliance, and only those who meet the strict criteria get the Energy Star rating. So, if you see the rating on an appliance, you can be confident it is energy efficient.
Choosing to live a more sustainable life is an admirable thing to do. When it comes to making eco-friendly swaps in your life and your home, remember to start small to make the changes more sustainable and consistent. Once you get the hang of doing this automatically, you can build on this to include more swaps over time to boost your green credentials and significantly impact the world around you.