Auld Lang Green!
Happy New Year! It’s time to think about your resolutions for 2013. Consider making a resolution that will result in a cleaner environment and a safer climate … and a happier you. Here are a few ideas:
- Try a trash fast. Make a pledge to avoid heavily packaged goods and buy products that can be recycled. A trash fast will increase what you recycle and may help you save money if you purchase less in the first place. Your mission for the year, should you choose to accept it: keep as much trash out of the landfill as possible. Check out Earth911 to learn how many times common materials can be recycled.
- Go paperless. Make this the year you finally go paperless. Whether at home or at work, that means printing only what you must and cutting back on unnecessary mail. Ask your service providers to switch from paper to online statements; most banks, cable/internet, insurance, health, and mortgage providers now offer tools to easily check your account and pay bills online.
- Volunteer with a green cause. Volunteering for an outdoor clean-up is a great way to get outside, meet people and give back to your community. If money is your time, consider supporting a sustainability project through an organization like Kiva.org.
- Change how you get around. Switch up your daily transportation routines to reduce your carbon footprint. Walk, bike or carpool whenever possible and increase your use of public transportation. It’s a great way to avoid stressful traffic … and you can actually work or enjoy a good book along the way! Want to track your commute? Apps like Commute Greener can help you set targets and share your experiences.
- Embrace energy efficiency. There are countless things we can do to make our homes more energy efficient. These include using CFL or LED lighting, programming thermostats to save on heat and air conditioning, replacing and cleaning air filters, or insulating the attic to avoid air leaks. Commit to doing something different every month. For a comprehensive list of ideas go to http://makeanimpact.c2es.org/tips/home.
- Be a green leader. There’s power in numbers. Organize a group in your neighborhood or your apartment building to tackle environmental projects this year. Be creative and plan a few activities that get everyone involved, like cleaning up trash, planting trees, or reducing water and energy use. Check your local resources for ideas on where to start.
- Help green your office. In addition to making a difference in your community, explore the option of leading the efforts to make your work more environmentally friendly. Visit http://makeanimpact.c2es.org/tips/work to learn how.
The new year is full of new possibilities for you, your family, and your community. Make it a year to remember by committing to make a difference for the environment.