ways to be more green at homeMany of us have reduced our carbon footprint outside of the home by carpooling or biking to work. We bring our own cups to the coffee shop rather than using the paper cups. However, we have become complacent at home and use more energy than we need to or waste things unnecessarily. There are simple ways that you can be more eco-conscious at home.

There are some simple ways to be greener at home. Make sure that you get your whole family to pitch in as well. Start with simple steps first and work down the list as you get into the groove of other steps. You can start implementing these suggestions from Whole Living today:

1. Turn Off the Lights
Helping to change the world isn’t that hard. It begins with small acts that become habits. As they gain momentum, soon you’re not doing just one thing; you’re revolutionizing your life in a way that can, in fact, save the planet.

Two-thirds of all the electricity used in the residential sector of the United States powers lights and appliances. Considering that electricity production generates more than 1.9 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions a year, a simple flick of the switch is a good start.

2. Eat More Veggies
While a meat-centered diet deepens our ecological footprint and contributes to pollution, a plant-centered diet requires fewer resources and supports long-term health. But you don’t have to go completely veggie to reap the benefits; try gradually shifting the emphasis of your meals from animal-based proteins to plant-based ones, such as soy foods and beans.

3. Use Greener Cleaners
As many as a third of Americans have an adverse reaction to common household chemicals. Safer products can save you money, too. While furniture polish will set you back about $4, cleaning with 1/4 cup of distilled white vinegar and a few drops of olive oil costs mere cents.

4. Find New Uses for Old Things
Many retailers provide in-store drop-off bins for recycling cell phones, while items such as clothing, toys, and computers are great for local shelters and rescue missions. Through donations you not only relieve pressure on landfills, you contribute directly to your community.

6. Bring Your Own Bag to the Grocery Store
The paper-or-plastic dilemma may someday be obsolete. But paper is an only slightly better alternative. The greenest option? Look in your closet and drawers for a strong, durable, reusable bag, and take it with you to the supermarket, mall, or your favorite takeout place.

7. Start Gardening
From the production of petroleum-based fertilizers to the cross-country distribution of seasonal fruits and vegetables, the modern food system accounts for 10 percent of U.S. energy consumption. And yet at least 30 million acres of abundant front lawns remain idle. Try turning a small patch into your own personal produce section.

8. Buy Products Made from Recycled Materials
These days, it’s easy to find affordable green products and adopt creative, sustainable practices — and doing so will bolster the bottom line by cutting energy and material needs.

9. Choose Reusable Instead of Disposable Products
Saving the Earth starts early. Show even your littlest child that you always think green by selecting reusable instead of disposable products.

10. Turn Off Your Computer
Whenever you leave work, remember to turn off your computer, especially on Fridays — or any other occasion when you’re going to be away from the office for long periods of time.

Source: Whole Living

Image Source: Jim Linwood

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