Realistic Eco-Friendly Resolutions for 2021
2020 is over, finally!
Here’s hoping 2021 is happier, healthier, and less crazy. (If these first weeks are any indication, we’re not convinced.)
Of course, a new year brings new resolutions that are easily made...and just as easily broken. Especially, when it comes to earth- and eco-friendly lifestyle changes.
But, that’s why we’re here!
We’ve put together four resolutions for 2021 that you can actually stick with to make your home and your lifestyle more sustainable.
1. Make your shower one minute shorter
According to Boston University, the average person uses 69 gallons of water a day. An average shower uses about 5 gallons. In other words, if you shorten your shower by one minute you’d be saving 5 gallons of water. In a world where 1.1 billion people lack access to water, any amount you can reduce in your daily life helps. Plus, you’ll also be reducing the amount of energy needed to heat your shower.
2. Start composting
Composting food scraps is easier than ever. Whether it’s for your family garden or as part of a community composting program, saving food scraps to turn into fertilizer is an easy but effective way to reduce waste. Check out Foodal’s guide to composting for ideas on how to start today.
3. Eliminate at least 1 single-use plastic product
If we had our way, you wouldn’t buy another single-use plastic product again. But, we know this is the real world and old habits die hard. A great place to start is to stop buying at least one of the single-use plastic products you use on a daily basis and replace it with a reusable alternative. It could be plastic wrap, plastic baggies, plastic bottles, etc. Pick one, find a great alternative (like the ones in our shop) and never buy it again.
4. Change over all your light bulbs to LED
You can’t deny the facts. According to the Department of Energy, LED light bulbs use 75% less energy and last 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs. So, if you still have old school light bulbs in your home, it’s time to make the switch. You may have to pay little bit more than your used to up front, but over time you’ll be saving a ton of money--and energy.
5. Carry a reusable water bottle
Some quick facts: Single-use plastic bottles take 450 years to break down. 1,000,000
bottles are sold globally every MINUTE. And, in the U.S. we only recycle 30% of the plastic bottles we use. It’s time to stop the plastic bottle habit. Find yourself a great reusable bottle and start refilling!
6. Try Meatless Mondays
You may not be ready to become a vegetarian (we’re not either). But reducing the amount of meat you eat, even by a little bit, can have a huge effect in reducing the 12% of greenhouse gases caused by livestock farming. Make 2021 the year to give Meatless Mondays a try!
7. Go Paperless
You probably have most of your bill pay setup online and have perfected mobile banking. But, are you still getting the stray bill in the mail? Take some time to ensure ALL of your bills and receipts are sent online rather than in paper.
8. Use smart power strips
It’s time to stop the vampires. Vampire loads that is. These are power loads that consume energy even when your devices aren’t on or are in sleep mode. By plugging your devices into smart power strips - that can detect when devices are in standby and shut off power to those devices - you can save significant money on energy costs.
9. Shop local
As we slowly come out of the pandemic, it’s a great time to recommit to shopping local. By doing so, you’ll reduce the emissions used to drive long distances. This applies not only to your own physical shopping but also the online shopping that you do. Plus, it has the added benefit of stimulating your local economy during a much-needed recovery period.
10. Shop second hand
Why buy something new when you can reuse what’s already been made? Next time you’re looking for that new piece of clothing or furniture, take a look at your local thrift or antique shop before shopping for something brand new.
Have other great ideas to make your home more sustainable? Be sure to share them with us on social media (@jillandjoeyru).