Living a green, sustainable lifestyle isn’t just trendy. It’s socially, morally, and environmentally responsible. There is so much waste in society that the future of Earth’s resources is uncertain. Cutting down on the resources you consume is your way to make an impact on the world you live in, for yourself and for your children and their children, too. Here are four easy ways to do it.
Join a CSA
CSA stands for community-sponsored agriculture, and a CSA is a group in which you invest in local farmers and their farmlands. In exchange for your investment, you receive a portion of the crops they produce. Some CSAs will deliver the crops to your door once a week, and others you travel to the farm to pick up your produce. Joining a CSA is an excellent way to live a green, sustainable lifestyle. Not only are you supporting local farmers, you’re also getting some of your grocery shopping done automatically. What’s more painless than a box of fresh fruits and vegetables delivered to your door?
Clean with Vinegar
Vinegar is something you probably already have in your kitchen, and it’s very inexpensive. You can use vinegar for so much more than cooking. Vinegar is slightly acidic, and it’s all natural. It disinfects and cleans extremely well, and it doesn’t harm the environment. Just put some vinegar into a spray bottle, and use it for all your cleaning needs. You’ll be surprised how easy it is, and you won’t have to worry about poisoning any children or animals in your home. Once you begin using vinegar instead of chemicals, you’ve made a quick, easy change that’s significantly better for the environment and your home.
Minimizing your paper consumption is an excellent way to live a sustainable lifestyle. There are lots of ways you can reduce the amount of paper you use. Start by signing up for automatic bill payment for as many regular expenses as you can. This is so easy, and it’s even more convenient than writing checks every month; the money is simply deducted from your account, and you don’t even have to worry about paying on time. Cancel your newspaper or magazine subscriptions and read them online instead. Replace your roll of paper towels in the kitchen with several washable hand towels and dishcloths.
Reducing your energy consumption and fuel use is very important, and an obvious way to do it is to drive less often. It’s not always possible to walk or ride a bike somewhere, and deciding to bike your 15-mile commute certainly isn’t painless. You can live a greener lifestyle, however, by being more conscious of the way you drive, you can cut down on a lot of time spent in your car. Try to be more proactive in planning your weekly destinations. When you need to run errands, try to do them all at once in the way that requires the least amount of driving, rather than one at a time spread out through the week.
Minnie Brown writes about sustainable living and sustainable travel. She lives in NYC with her husband Gerald and two kids.