Make The Switch
Sustainable living is not that hard when we adopt these tiny but power-packed lifestyle changesBy Rosy Jose K
Do you believe your children will have easy access to potable water, fertile soil and pure air? If your answer is in the negative, then it is time for action. Global warming, desertification and ozone layer depletion are no longer myths. And it is high time to embrace a sustainable lifestyle. You can achieve this seemingly difficult and daunting task by following two basic principles: modifying your way of life to utilise fewer resources or switching to products that cause least amount of environmental damage.
Adopt these 5 practices to reduce your carbon footprint
- It takes a lot of energy to produce potable water and electricity. A few simple changes like fixing leakages, using a mug of water instead of running water while brushing or washing hands, and running the washing machine only with a full load can really help preserve water. Reduction in daily energy consumption can be achieved by turning off lights when not in use, using daylight to the maximum, installing energy efficient windows, and switching to energy efficient gadgets.
- Growing plants indoors helps not only in increasing the oxygen levels of the air inside the house but they are also shown to absorb harmful toxins from the air. While plants have less horsepower than air purifiers, they’re more natural, cost-effective, and therapeutic. In fact, there are many varieties of shade tolerant plants that can thrive in our households. Mixing the potting soil with coco peat ensures that soil can hold more water and also acts as an organic compost source.
- A simple and more effective way to live an eco-friendly life is to opt for public transportation or carpooling for your daily commuting needs. You could even try to walk or cycle for your daily grocery runs or other small distance chores.
- Littering can have a huge impact on the environment. It clogs our water bodies and the land around us. It becomes a life-threatening situation for animals who ingest them. Being a responsible citizen and custodian of this world, it is our responsibility to make sure our cities are clean and that we impart the same values to our kids.
- Think about the clothes you buy. Use natural fabrics like cotton, linen, hemp, organic silk, and organic wool, and avoid polyester or acrylic fabrics. Massive amounts of chemical waste are produced during the dyeing and manufacturing of synthetic fabrics from fossil fuels. Being cheap materials, these fabrics are used extensively in branded wear. On every wash, these fabrics release micro- and nano-plastics into the oceans. Invest in pieces whose shelf life is more than a couple of wears.
Here are 5 products that will help you lead a more eco-friendly lifestyle
- Dental products generate obscene amounts of plastic waste every year. Switch to one of these innovative products to make a small change which will eventually add up to a big difference over the long-term; plastic toothbrush made from recycled materials, wooden or bamboo or aluminum toothbrush.
- In our pursuit of clean laundry and fresh smelling clothes, we use various scented laundry detergents and fabric softeners which contain harsh chemicals. Replace these with laundry detergents made from natural ingredients which are not only gentle on your clothes and skin, but on the environment too.
- There are over a billion nondegradable sanitary napkins clogging our sewage systems, water bodies, and landfills. This is because commercially available sanitary products are 90 percent plastic. Shift to biodegradable menstrual pads which are all-natural and are made out of corn starch, bamboo fiber and compostable bio-plastic. Another long-term, eco-friendly solution is to use menstrual cups.
- Have you observed how much waste is generated with every trip to the supermarket? Each vegetable or staple is packed in separate plastic bags, which are dumped into the garbage after a few days. Turn to reusable produce bags which not only keep your fruits and vegetables fresh for longer in the refrigerator but also ensure that you never have to accept another plastic bag ever again.
- Weddings, birthday parties, and travel are some of the occasions which create a lot of plastic waste; more specifically, using disposable cutlery, plates, and glasses. These clog our water bodies and landfills, eventually maiming animals and wildlife. Switch to compostable cutlery and bamboo plates. These are only a few of the environmentally friendly options and practices that you can imbibe into your daily life. This is not the end but a beginning of your journey to living as one with Mother Nature and the other co-inhabitants of earth.