The idea of sustainability is to maintain the balance of human systems in the context of ecology. Sustainability supports ecological functions and increases productivity for a prolonged period of time. Living a sustainable lifestyle helps the environment as well as conserves energy and resources. It does not necessarily mean making sacrifices, but it means making changes in our everyday activities that brings about a big change towards conservation of resources and nature, which will actually enhance life in the long run. People who are already practicing sustainability can see significant changes in their utility bills, typically live a healthier life, and also make a difference in the environment and global climatic changes.
We are going to give you 5 sustainable ideas below for going “green” at home and changing your lifestyle towards a more sustainable one.
1. Save energy
There are many ways you could be saving energy at home. If you have been using a traditional thermostat for example, you are not using the optimal amount of energy for heating and cooling. The new intelligent programmable thermostats can learn from its user’s behavior and control the room temperature to the optimal levels, so that no energy is wasted. Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers, former Apple engineers, developed a thermostat called the “Nest” that does all the work for consumers.
Below is some energy saving tips:
1. Switch to energy efficient appliances
2. Turn off lights
3. Unplug appliances when not in use
4. Close the fridge
5. Insulate your homes
6. Use better insulation on doors and windows
7. Service heating and cooling systems regularly
8. Use cold water for the dishwater
9. Hand wash and line dry clothes more often
10. Wash full loads of cloths in your washing machine
11. Maintain your appliances
12. Keep your dryer lint free and service regularly
13. Insulate water heater tanks and pipes
By recycling your household stuff you could reduce the amount of trash sent to landfills and also reduce environmental impacts by saving the amount of energy saved in collecting, processing and dumping the trash. You can also save natural resources such as timber, water, and minerals. You should also use more stuff made with recycled materials. For example, using toilet paper made from recycled fibers could be saving thousands of trees. Recycling also reduces emission of greenhouse gases and also creates more jobs.
Water is becoming a major concern for the whole world. There has been droughts reported more frequently around the world, including in the United States, and yet very few people are concerned about their water wastage. We could easily reduce our water wastage by following these simple tips:
- Find and fix leaks: a small drip per minute could waste over 50 gallons of water per year.
- Buy appliances that use less water: compare and buy washing machines and dishwashers that use less water.
- Turn water off: Before you go on a vacation: turn off the water
- Reuse old water: If you find a glass of old water around the house, use it to water your plants. Your washing machine water can also be used to water your plants.
- Install efficient shower heads: Efficient shower heads can save more water. You can also install shower heads that pause when you lather up, also called the “military shower”.
4. Reduce waste
Each year we produce thousands of tons of waste. Some of the waste is produced from construction sites or from factories when goods and products are manufactured, packaged, stored, distributed and marketed. We also generate tons of waste at home from our kitchens and from the stuff we regularly use. An enormous amount of waste is also generated through the renovation, construction, and demolition of homes. Many of us don’t realize that waste is linked with climatic changes. Products and services, as well as management of the resulting waste – all use energy that results in greenhouse gas emissions. By reducing waste you could reduce carbon footprints and environmental impacts. Below are few tips for making your homes greener.
1. Make your home more energy efficient
2. Only buy what you need,
3. Reuse and recycle your waste
4. Conserve energy
5. Use natural products
Find eco-friendly, nontoxic products and buy products made in sustainable methods. When you buy groceries form the store, read the labels to see if the product was made from all natural ingredients, or if it contains any harsh toxic chemicals. Buying eco-friendly, organic products will help promote sustainability. For every product that you use, whether it’s for cleaning your house, personal hygiene products, pesticides or air fresheners, you will always find eco-friendly, non toxic alternatives. For example, the all natural soap-nuts available in the market today that are affordable and can be used for everything from your car to your laundry.
You can try green practices in every aspect of your life, starting from your home. Please share and let others know that you are making a difference.