With Earth Day happening, there’s no better time to start thinking of ways you can give back to the environment. Each April 22, we honor our planet and reflect on ideas to conserve natural resources.
This year marks the 45th anniversary of Earth Day! Join in this milestone celebration by greening up your life using the 10 ideas below.
1. Unplug Your Electronics
As a student, you spend a lot of time using your computer, printer and iPad charger. There’s a good chance you leave these devices plugged in when you’re not using them, which wastes electricity. Rather than having to constantly plug and unplug everything, invest in a power strip that you can easily switch on and off.
2. Take Public Transportation
Do you drive to work, campus, or the library alone each day? If so, consider carpooling or taking public transportation. Not only will you help cut down on pollution, you’ll also save money on gas. Plus, you can add extra time into your day by studying on the bus or train!
3. Stop Buying Bottled Water
Sure, it’s a bit easier to pick up a bottle of water at the nearest gas station, but it creates a ton of waste. In fact, it takes more than 17 million gallons of oil each year to produce bottled water. Do your part to help the environment by installing a filter on your tap at home and purchasing a reusable water bottle.
4. Buy Reusable Bags and Containers
If you work or attend on-campus classes, it’s only natural (and smart) that you may often opt to pack lunch or dinner to take with you. Rather than carrying your items in disposable bags and containers, invest in a few reusable ones that you can wash and bring back each day.
5. Use Less Paper
Think about it, how often do you print documents when you could just view them online? Save a few trees and use as little paper as possible. It’s good for the environment and it’s also much easier to not have to carry bulky papers around.
6. Make a Habit of Recycling
Many things you come across in you daily life are recyclable, such as cans, newspapers, magazines, bottles and more. Do the Earth a favor and designate a bin in your home strictly for recyclables. Many municipalities even collect recycling from your home, making this effort incredibly easy.
7. Open a Window
Sometimes it’s much warmer or cooler in your home than it actually is outside. Open the windows instead of turning on the heat or air conditioning. You’ll fill your house with fresh air and save money on your utility bill, all while being eco-friendly.
8. Pay Bills Electronically
Are you still writing checks and putting bills in the mail? If so, simplify your life and reduce waste by paying your bills online.
9. Eat Local
Head to your local farmer’s market to buy fresh produce, as it can reduce the pollution and energy used by transporting, storing and refrigerating fruits and vegetables grown elsewhere. You’ll be rewarded with lower prices and foods that contain more nutrients.
10. Take Shorter Showers
The average shower uses five gallons of water per minute. Help reduce water consumption by cutting back on your shower time. Even a three minute decrease will save 15 gallons of water.