Sure, Elon Musk might move us all to Mars one day, but for now, the earth is the only planet we have, and taking care of it needs to be a priority. While we need governments and companies to do more, there are little things we can all do at home that can also help. Simple eco-hacks that are good for the planet and can save a little money? That’s what I call a Win-Win!
Reusable Water Bottles
If you’ve seen the “Blue Planet II” nature documentary, you were probably amazed at how beautiful the earth is and how destructive plastic bottles are to our planet, making their way into our oceans and killing millions of animals yearly. So STOP buying plastic water bottles. Instead, get yourself a reusable bottle made of stainless steel, glass, or recycled plastic, and fill it with water. It can make a big difference to our oceans, and it’s cheaper than buying bottled water all the time as well.
Carpooling can be fun, even if you aren’t James Corden driving around and singing with the likes of Lady Gaga and Stevie Wonder. According to the EPA, “A typical passenger vehicle emits about 4.6 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year.” And while ideally, we would all leave our cars at home and walk, bike, scoot, or take public transportation to work, those are only options for some. But carpooling might be. Organizing a carpool rotation with a few people from work means everyone drives their cars less, thus emitting less C02 into the environment. And honestly, with gas prices what they are these days, the financial savings could be pretty substantial.
Low-Flow Shower Head
You’re probably saying, “don’t mess with my showers!” And trust me, I get it. For many of us, our shower time is a sacred time where hot water and a powerful flow work together to wash away the day’s stress. But a low-flow showerhead can make a big difference. Going back to the EPA again, the average American family uses about 40 gallons of water daily showering. Over one year of using a low-flow showerhead, that average family could save up to 2,700 gallons of water. And while low-flow devices often get a bad rap, there are excellent ones out there these days that don’t cause you to sacrifice too much in the way of spray power.
Stop Using So Many Paper Towels
The roll of paper towels is a staple in most of our kitchens, and we use them for everything. Drying our hands, drying washed fruit, wiping up spills, blowing our noses, and picking up spiders to throw them outside. They are almost ubiquitous in our lives, and we must change that. I’m not saying you should never use a paper towel again. But the truth is that for many of the times we grab at that white roll, we could just as easily use a dish cloth, a tea towel, or some other reusable/washable towel device. And when we use paper towels, don’t throw them in the garbage. Paper towels are compostable. Just check your local ordinances for specifics.
Made-At-Home Cleaning Products
Besides the plastic bottles most cleaning products come in, it’s the stuff in the products that you might also want to avoid. Most products on store shelves use toxic chemicals to provide the cleaning power the product promises, but they often aren’t needed. For most basic household cleaning incidents, made-at-home cleaning products will do the job perfectly using simple and environmentally friendly ingredients most of us have in our cupboards, like vinegar, baking soda, lemon, etc. A quick Google search will bring up a whole host of quick and easy recipes you can use.