As the world becomes more and more aware of becoming eco-conscious, people are adopting a sustainable lifestyle. From reducing your carbon footprint to conserving electricity, you incorporate little changes to do your bit for the environment. As we celebrate World Environment Day 2020, we see the evident need for these changes. If you intend to live in harmony with nature, these tips will guide for sure.
What Is Sustainable Living?
Sustainable living describes a lifestyle that attempts to reduce an individual’s or society’s use of the Earth’s natural resources, and one’s personal resources.What Is Sustainable Living?
You hear about climate change and global warming and know that these real issues are affecting us adversely. So how do you help? Realistically, it is not easy to transition to the other extreme which includes zero-waste living and all-natural products. But you can start the process with small to moderate changes to your existing lifestyle.
Changes That Can Help The Environment
Decreasing Air Pollution
Delhi’s alarmingly high air pollution levels forced the authorities to take drastic measures. The odd-even vehicle rule, in particular, stood out the most. One change that can help you reduce air pollution is your mode of transportation.
- Next time you go shopping, take the train or metro instead of a cab.
- Plant a few trees and make it a habit. Or build your own mini-garden on your terrace or balcony.
- Keep your vehicles in tip-top shape as well-maintained vehicles can cut down on emissions.
Did You Know?
The air quality in Delhi, according to a WHO survey of 1,650 world cities, is the worst of any major city in the world.
Combating Water Pollution
Water is already a major issue in India with states like Odisha & Assam facing floods while Maharashtra & Gujarat face droughts. Contamination of water, along with water wastage, is a growing concern.
- Dispose of oils in an empty container instead of the sink. The same rule applies to medicines.
- Limit the use of detergents and bleach. Do your laundry when you have a full load.
- Install a rainwater harvesting system if you have a garden or you can do that in your apartment complex.
Did You Know?
According to a report by NITI Ayog in 2018, 21 Indian cities will run out of groundwater by 2020.
Reducing Carbon Footprint
Reducing your carbon footprint is the need of the hour. You have sat in traffic for hours and seen the harm it does to the environment. Increased depletion of natural resources is evident and you can help by adopting some new methods.
- Avoid shopping until it’s necessary. Fast fashion items get dumped in landfills where they produce methane as they decompose.
- Switch lights off when you leave the room and unplug your electronic devices when they are not in use.
- Try going vegetarian/vegan on certain days of the week and buy organic locally-sourced foods.
Did You Know?
In India, 68.7% of GHG emissions come from the energy sector, followed by agriculture, industrial processes, land-use change and forestry.
Saving Marine Life
The image of the sea turtle with a plastic straw stuck up its nose went viral. Marine life is severely affected because of our current lifestyle.
- Use fewer plastic products and swap your plastic straws with eco-friendly one (metal, bamboo, biodegradable).
- The next time you visit the beach, clean up after yourself and make sure the waste goes into the dumpster.
- Avoid purchasing items such as coral jewellery, tortoiseshell hair accessories, and shark products.
Did You Know?
As of 2019, India generates 26,000 tonnes of plastic waste a day and 10,000 tonnes of that plastic waste gets dumped in our seas & oceans daily!Economic Times
Fight Climate Change
Practical, implementable ways on an individual level can help make a big difference. Climate change can be fought right from your home and there are several ways to do it.
- Add solar panels for your home or initiate a conversation to do so in your apartment building as a collective effort.
- Build your own compost bin and make your own organic compost at home. This serves the double purpose of combating climate change as well as avoiding landfill pile-ups.
- Change light bulbs to LEDs as they can last 25 times longer, are more durable, and use way less energy than other bulbs.
Did You Know?
India emits about 3 gigatonnes (Gt) CO2eq of greenhouse gases each year; about two and a half tons per person, which is half the world average. The country emits 7% of global emissions.
30 More Ways To Save The Environment
When you see others around you doing their part to save the environment, it can be daunting. But, when you break it down into small steps, you realise how easy it is to follow through.
- Turn off the lights and fan when you leave a room.
- To conserve water, mop your home every alternate day instead of every day.
- Make your own shopping bags from recycled clothes or buy ones that are made from cloth, canvas or jute.
- Buying upcycled furniture can be innovative and environmentally smart.
- Buy new appliances with the Energy Star label.
- Opt for natural light in your workspace or home and avoid using too many lights.
- Hang-dry your clothes instead of using the dryer.
- Reduce food waste by implementing rules during social gatherings, especially weddings.
- Consider buying a bicycle to run errands instead of driving or jumping a cab or auto.
- Shop local to not only boost the local economy but also to reduce carbon emissions.
- Minimise time spent you showering and try using less water every time.
- Turn off the tap while you brush your teeth and only turn it on when needed.
- Turn off your devices at night, including your wifi box.
- Go grocery shopping in your local farmer’s market instead of the supermarket.
- Carry your own eco-friendly (stainless steel) water bottle and stop buying bottled water.
- Go paperless for everything from letters, notices to wedding invitations.
- Ask for online receipts and bank statements.
- Use your phone, tablet or computer for taking notes.
- Always use double-sided printing where possible.
- Buy shampoo, conditioner and lotions that can be refilled in the same container.
- Opt for menstrual cups instead of tampons and pads.
- Instead of store-bought diapers for babies, switch to ones made with cloth.
- Switch your plastic kitchen containers with glass ones.
- Invest in a pressure cooker to save gas as well as time.
- Use old newspapers to line your kitchen waste bin.
- Make your own face cleansers and body scrubs and store them in repurposed containers.
- Consider using shampoo bars to reduce packaging.
- Use reusable cotton pads for removing your makeup.
- Make DIY greeting cards from recycled materials.
- Use rechargeable batteries where possible.