You Ask, We Answer: How Can I Be More Eco-Friendly Every Day?
Earth Month is still in full swing, and that means that we here at Calcagni Real Estate are considering the ways we can be more eco-friendly in our daily lives. As it turns out, being more mindful about our habits makes it much easier to reach our planet-loving goals, and our hope is that these easy tips may make your “green” goals more attainable, too. Here are a few ways you can be more eco-friendly every day.
Support your local farmers
We love our local Connecticut grocery stores, and we wouldn’t be able to live without them. But when it comes to being more eco-friendly, supporting Connecticut farmers via our local farmers’ markets is a great place to start. Because produce at farmers’ markets doesn’t have to travel as far as the produce in the grocery store, it creates lower greenhouse emissions. And, you won’t find much single-use plastic packaging at the farmers’ market, so when you bring your own reusable tote bags to haul home your items, you’re making a positive impact on eliminating plastic waste. Plus, you have the added feel-good bonus of knowing you’re supporting those who grow and harvest food right here in our beautiful state. So if you’re looking for produce, meats, eggs, dairy, honey, bread, or other delicious items, you may want to head to your local farmers’ market. Here’s a guide to get you started!
Unplug before traveling
Whether you’re heading out for a weekend away or a longer-term vacation, unplugging your appliances and devices can be a super easy way to be more eco-friendly. Devices that are powered off or in “sleep mode” but are plugged in can still drain energy. Take a few minutes before heading out the door to unplug your computer and monitor, TVs, lamps, toasters, coffee machines, etc. Such a simple act may even add up to savings on your electric bill in the long term, so it’s a win-win for you and the planet.
Buy, sell, or donate gently used clothes
Here’s the dirty secret about the fashion industry: According to Columbia University Climate School, “Fashion is responsible for 10 percent of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions and 20 percent of global wastewater, and uses more energy than the aviation and shipping sectors combined.” And in the U.S., we throw away an eye-popping 11.3 million tons of textile waste each year (Bloomberg).
Buying gently used clothes from local vintage stores, Salvation Army outposts, from upscale fashion sites like The Real Real or from EBay and Facebook can be a wonderful way for you to express your style without creating more waste. Likewise, selling your gently used clothes through these outlets can also help prevent you from throwing away textiles that may take decades to begin to break down in landfills. Donating wearable clothes that your children have outgrown, or selling them during a tag sale or local fundraiser, can also be an eco-friendly choice you can make–and you may help someone in the meantime obtain needed clothing.
Reach for reusable storage bags
Here’s a small change you can make that over time, may add up to an impressive impact on the environment: Switching out your boxes of single-use plastic baggies for reusable silicone storage bags may save up to hundreds of single-use plastic bags annually. Brands like Stasher have created reusable silicone bags in various shapes and sizes to accommodate your daily needs, including packing lunches and snacks. And, because they’re formulated without harmful chemicals that won’t leach into your food, you can also use them in the freezer, the microwave (hello, popcorn!) and the dishwasher. In fact, some even use their Stasher bags to sous vide their steaks!
Being eco-friendly every day doesn’t have to be stressful. In fact, being more mindful of small changes can actually make us feel better about our impact on the world!