Fall Back into Good Habits
With back to school and holiday shopping, this season’s buying habits can really affect your environmental footprint. Did you know that the average consumption rate of a U.S. citizen requires eighteen tons of natural resources and emits over 19 tons of carbon dioxide?
But you can shrink your footprint by keeping the 3-R’s in mind – reduce, reuse and recycle!
Reducing the amount of “stuff” we buy prevents waste from being generated in the first place. When you do buy:
- Choose products that come in less packaging
- Buy refills (it’s cheaper!)
- Choose reusable clean-up cloths over paper towels
- Use reusable shopping bags over plastic or paper bags
- Sign up for services that provide access to purchasing or trading second-hand items.(e.g. Freecycle)
Find more tips on how to reduce here.
Even an earth-friendly product requires energy to produce, resources to create and fuel to transport it. Find ways to get the most out of what you buy or items you already have:
- Purchase reusable items like grocery bags, kitchen towels and rechargeable batteries.
- A quick web search for reusable products will turn up a great variety of vendors.
- Find new uses for old things like using newspaper/magazine pages as gift wrapping paper and mismatched coasters as gift tags.
- At home, re-use worn-out clothes for cleaning rags and clean with lemons, vinegar and baking soda. Watch your grocery bill drop!
- From cars to clothes, it’s chic to be thrifty. Buying second-hand is almost always cheaper and it’s still new to you.
- Clean out your closets and donate your old goods to charities such as the Salvation Army, Goodwill, Dress for Success, Habitat for Humanity and others. Let others reuse what you no longer need.
Find more tips on how to reuse here.
There are two ways to hop on the recycling wagon (in the recycling bin?)
- Recycle at least half of things you use like aluminium, paper, plastic and glass and you could save 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide a year.
- Purchase items that are made from recycled materials. A quick web search for recycled products will turn up some great new products.
Find out more recycling tips on the Make an Impact Recycling page.
For more information on the 3 Rs and ideas that will help you save money and reduce your greenhouse gas emissions:
- Check out the In the Store and At the Curb sections of this website.
- Complete the carbon calculator for a personalized list of actions that you and your family can take.