Sometimes it sounds all a bit too hard. Sometimes it feels like I can’t really have that much of an impact as one lowly individual. Sometimes I feel like such a big problem can only be fixed by big solutions.
But the truth is – all the little things count. It really can be so simple to do a few small things in your everyday life to have a lasting impact on our environment. And since today is World Environment Day, it’s the perfect day to acknowledge we can make a difference – so it’s a great day to get started!!
We thought we would join in the celebrations of World Environment Day today by putting together a list of things that do make a difference and are also pretty easy. Before you know it you’ll be as green as a stalk of celery!
1. Try Cold Water
Scorching hot water isn’t needed to get your laundry clean and in fact, cold water can actually be better for your clothes and linen’s longevity. So for your next load, cut the hot and try the cold. I also avoid using dryer too which again can really damage your clothes. Try old air-dry next time instead.
2. Pick Up Some Litter
One of our sorellas said whenever she goes to the beach she picks up any litter she comes across. I think this is a great idea. We all share the beaches and while it would be fabulous for people not to litter at all, there are losers out there that feel like it’s their right to leave their crap around. What is wrong with people?!! (….don’t get me started on people who drop their cigarette butts).
Don’t live near a beach? You can do the same in your own neighborhood – keep your street clean and help do a pick up at your local park.
3. Get Nappy-Savvy
Have a bub? Have you tried using washable cloth nappies occasionally? We live in a disposable world and it’s hard to break the habit of ‘use and chuck’. Plus, I do understand that when you are sleep deprived, and have a million other things on your list to do, it would feel a heap easier to use disposable nappies. But I’m going to guess you do a fair bit of washing for your bub already so why not give the cloth nappies a go and see how it fits? Perhaps try to use one every second day as a start and see how you go. You can actually save a fair bit of cash by using cloth so if the environment isn’t an incentive, perhaps the money saved is! There are a heap on the market to choose from – one of our sorellas recommends ‘Mod Cloth’ nappies.
4. Use a Reusable Takeaway Coffee Cup
You’ve seen them, you have kinda thought they were cool, and you will also love to know that in using them you are massively reducing landfill. All it takes is getting in the habit to carry it with you and asking your café to use it instead of a disposable take-away cup. Some cafés also give you a discount when you use them! I have one of these.
5. Grow a Veggie Patch!
I live in inner Melbourne so space for expressing my green thumb is limited. But with the small area I have, I’ve put down some organic soil and planted things I tend to use regularly – a variety of herbs, chilli, lettuce, tomatoes, and cucumber. They all seem to take care of themselves for the most part! Growing your own is not only satisfying (and tastes amazing), it can save you money – I HATE paying $3 for a small bunch of herbs I only end up using half of.
6. Eco-Friendly Washing Products
I use Eco Store products for both my laundry washing and dishwasher as they are mineral and plant-based. People think ‘green’ products they are much more expensive than generic brands but because they don’t bulk the product up with fillers like the supermarket brands, you are actually getting more value for money. You’ll love the freshness of your laundry and feel a whole lot less guilty about letting nasty chemicals going down into our water ways.
7. Eat Less Meat
Reducing meat in your diet can be an overwhelming thought for some, but if you understand how our meat damages our environment, you might be more willing to try to reduce your intake. The girls at Sustainable Table suggest you get started by introducing ‘meat free days’. We reckon that this sounds pretty achievable. See this previous post for a recipe you could try tonight!
8. Change Where You Shop
Try and buy your fresh produce from farmers markets or a local (preferably organic) grocer. Sure, there is always something needed from one of the big supermarkets but where you can stock up with goodies from local producers and support local businesses. There is the assumption that farmers markets are a lot more expensive than the supermarkets, and this may be true to some extent but I promise you the quality is so much better and personally, I prefer knowing my hard-earned money is going to the local grower’s family rather than the pockets of the big supermarket executives or to fund their pokie-machine business (but that’s another post altogether)….
Don’t have farmers markets in your area? Search for an organic grocery box delivery service that operates in your state.
9. Resuse & Recycle
Donate your unwanted furniture, clothing or other goods to charity – don’t throw them out! Contributing to landfill is unnecessary when one person’s trash is another person’s treasure! And while you are at the charity shop, see if there is anything there that suits your taste instead of buying brand new.
10. Plant a Tree!
Seems kind of basic doesn’t it? But if there is one thing you do today to celebrate World Environment Day, get your kids outside and plant a tree together. It seems like such a small trivial thing to do but it has a big impact on our environment (plus it will keep the kids occupied for a while, and create ongoing excitement for them as they watch it grow!).
So there you have it – 10 every day easy tips for you to do your bit for the earth. Try and do one of these tips today – and commit to adding a few more as you can. You’ll find they become second nature soon enough!
Have any other easy green tips? Please share them below!