The Earth provides us with materials for shelter, food and water, and the air we need to fill our lungs. What do we do for the Earth in return? There are various ways to go greener other than recycling. Below are a few simple examples of how you can go green at home and give back to our planet.
Creating your own compost bin is simple and cost effective. What you need is a plastic container with a lid, a drill, newspaper or leaves, and dirt. Start off by drilling holes into the lid of your bin. Next, place either the leaves or newspaper at the bottom of the bin then fill the bin with dirt. Once you gather food waste such as banana peels and carrots, dump them and mix them into the dirt. The final step is to wait. After a few weeks you will begin to notice that the waste is turning into soil.
What are the benefits of composting? Recycling and reusing waste helps reduce methane emissions from landfills into our atmosphere. If you have your own garden, composting enriches the soil to a healthier state which helps with gardening your other plant life!
Switching Light Bulbs
Switching your regular incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs or LEDs can lead to significant changes. For one, energy use will be reduced within the household because incandescent bulbs generate wasted heat. This heat leads to more energy being put into cooling the house; in addition, energy saving bulbs can last up to six times longer than regular bulbs! According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, replacing one light bulb in every American household would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 9 billion pounds! Reduction of these greenhouse emissions helps in fighting global warming. Therefore, not only do you save money on your energy bill, you also do your part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Reduce Plastic Waste
Millions of tons of plastic are being dumped into the ocean each year. This plastic is seen floating in our oceans as well as deeping below the surface affecting ocean life. It is important to remember to recycle plastic properly to avoid pollution. Many ocean life are suffering due to the copious amounts of plastic in the ocean. Some animals become entangled, or suffocated with the waste and others consume it but die because they are incapable of digesting it. You can do your part by reducing the amount of plastic you use. Another way to do this besides recycling is to switch to reusable bags for every purchase. Something as simple as saying “no” to straws can make a difference in how much plastic waste pollutes our oceans and it’s easy to do!
Unplug Unused Appliances
Although it may be tedious to constantly plug and unplug appliances, doing so reduces energy use. Within a household it is common that we leave certain appliances plugged in even if we don't use them. Things like phone charger cables, laptop chargers, Keurigs, blenders, etc. can easily slip our minds. However, leaving appliances plugged in leads to small amounts of energy being used 24/7 even when we aren’t physically using them. Although the amount of energy being produced is small, consider how many appliances are left plugged in throughout your home. These appliances can generate a big sum in energy cost over time. Not only will you consume less energy, you will also be able to save more money on your electricity costs!
These four simple solutions to going greener at home will improve environmental conditions as well as help you save money! It’s time to give back to our planet and take better care of it as it has taken care of us.