In today’s world, looking after the earth is a job we are all responsible for. It is not just about saving the planet; it can trim your expenses down too! When your home is more efficient, you tend to spend less money and time fixing it up or replacing appliances in the long run. Here are a few ways to make your home a little more eco-friendly and lower your carbon footprint.
What exactly is eco-friendly?
The eco-friendly and earth-conscious trend began as an answer to combating climate change one house at a time. Many people are concerned about the rising levels of greenhouse gas emissions and carbon footprints eroding at the earth’s ozone layer.
Going green means cutting down on the amount of energy used and ultimately wasted and caring for the environment by cutting back on household wastage and single-use products that go on to polluting the oceans and upsetting the natural ecology. One household at a time is making a difference to the earth and creating a space that future generations can live in.
Let’s talk about lights
We all have at least one memory of a parent walking through the house, marveling at all the lights that were left burning. That crazed yell from upstairs, “Who left the lights on?” Well, they weren’t wrong. Making the switch to CLF Bulbs (Compact Fluorescent light bulbs) can help you save 66% more energy.
CFL bulbs can cut down on 400lb of greenhouse gas emissions. While energy-efficient bulbs can be a little more pricey, the benefits outweigh the long-term costs. These eco-friendly bulbs last longer and require less replacing, lowering your household waste in turn! Opening your curtains and blinds during the day can help cut back on the need to use lights and lamps; natural light is also a great mood enhancer and allows warmth into your house, cutting down on the heating bill!
You’ve got the power
When making the switch to eco-friendly or consciousness, look at the most power-consuming appliances in your house to see where you can cut costs. A few ways to cut back on unnecessary expenditure is to switch to solar power. Solar panels that power water heaters and smart water meters are energy-efficient ways to save energy and wastage.
Smart meters only click on at set times, so there is hot water when needed. Smart meters can control the temperature of the water as well. Smart switches on your appliances can help you manage your power usage as well. That being said, it’s time to skip the tumble dryer, line dry your clothing and watch your energy bill drop; the sun also has anti-bacterial properties to keep your clothing cleaner.
From scraps to botanical havens
Food waste is an enormous contributor to landfill gas emissions. It goes from kitchen scraps to piling up at the landfill and rotting away. There are a few ways to cut back on kitchen wastage that will see your garden blooming.
- Bokashi – Bokashi boxes are a smart way to utilize all kitchen scraps, even cooked food. Bokashi bran helps to decompose all biological items. The process is a great way to cut back on landfill wastage, and you can mix the bran into a compost heap to create nutrient-dense fertilizer!
- Composting – Traditional composting heaps are a great way to use uncooked vegetable scraps, eggshells, and tea bags. Piling up the vegetable scraps and turning them in a composter or a compost ditch helps break the items down.
- Save scraps – Veggie scraps can all be saved and frozen in a ziplock bag. Use these scraps to make homemade stocks and broths for cooking at a later date. Getting the most out of your food is an excellent way to save the environment.
- Keep leftovers – Saving leftovers in the freezer is a nifty trick to cutting back on food waste. Cooking just the right amount of food is key to less wastage; while this is not always possible, saving portions for a later date might just come in handy.
Cooking up a storm
Consider updating your kitchen equipment and appliances to energy-efficient options. Minimalism and eco-friendly solutions often intersect where the concept of less is more stays the same. Energy efficiency is a test that all modern-day appliances have to go through. Choosing devices with energy-friendly ratings is key to a lower bill at the end of the month.
- Ditch standard stainless steel cookware and opt for cast iron. Cast iron is durable, robust, and most importantly, retains and evenly disperses heat. In particular, Dutch Ovens (like Uno Casa) work much in the same way that a slow cooker does. Durable cookware that retains heat and helps you cook food faster and more effectively is the way of the future. Many households choose cast iron as you can use it indoors and outdoors.
- When baking, stick to keeping the oven closed; every time you open it just a smidgen, it has to reheat, which wastes energy. Don’t forget to give your range a clean to keep it working at its best.
- Check the energy rating on your refrigerator; it may be a time for an upgrade or a service. Servicing your appliances regularly will keep them functioning at optimal levels and keep them as good as new.
Reduce, recycle, and reuse
Reducing and reusing are two crucial considerations. You can purchase items secondhand and recycle any items you have by donating to a local charity or shelter. Here are a few ways you can reduce and reuse:
- Single-use items – Such as plastic is one of the biggest landfill problems. Plastics will stay around for years after use. More and more people are opting for plastic-free packaging. Grab some mesh bags for fresh produce and bread purchased in local shops. Ditch razors and get a reusable razor with a changeable blade. Opting for bamboo toothbrushes is also a dazzling way to keep the world green.
- Local is best – Try shopping and supporting local businesses. Keeping it local reduces your carbon footprint by cutting out the commute and supporting a local company that is more likely to listen to any requests to keep the packaging to a minimum and stock more eco-friendly and biodegradable options.
- Reusable – Products that are reusable cut back on landfill waste. Try these simple swaps to get your waste down to an all-time low. Cloth shopping bags instead of plastic. Cloth napkins instead of paper towels – these can be thrown in the wash and can be found. There are many reusable options out there, from coffee pods for your Nespresso machine to reusable sandwich wraps.
With stores stocking reusable eco-friendly, and biodegradable products, now is the time to ditch the plastic and grab some bamboo containers.
Getting smart and with the times is something that everyone can do. Whether it is turning to reusable coffee cups and cloth napkins at home or getting a compost pile going. There are little changes that anyone can make to keep the earth going for a little longer.