Tips For A Greener Life
Help create demand for products with recycled content and send a message to manufacturers. Close the loop: buy products made from (or packaged in) recycled materials and recycle them when done. Buy 100% post-consumer recycled paper. Visit for some good ideas for the office.
Choose Sustainable Ingredients and Materials
Buy local, organic, fair trade and vegetarian. Choose non-toxic recyclable yoga mats, organic cotton, hemp, bamboo and fleece clothing. Support farmers in less wealthy nations and buy fair trade coffee and chocolate. Not only will you help promote sustainable farming practices, you'll also help prevent rainforests from being further decimated.
Detoxify Your Life
Buy non-toxic paints for your house and use non-toxic natural cleaners like baking soda and vinegar. They're cheap and safe for kids and pets. Buy beauty products with little or no preservative; solid shampoos, conditioners, bubble bars and massage bars all come with no packaging and no preservatives.
BYOB (Bring Your Own Bag)
Look for products you can take home unwrapped. Don't bag produce; it stays just as fresh in your crisper naked as in a plastic bag. Take your own bag everywhere; one person using one reusable bag can save hundreds of plastic bags from the landfill and oceans every year.
BYOM (Bring Your Own Mug)
Bring your own mug with you wherever you go. Get a really good stainless steel travel mug (not plastic). It'll keep your coffee or tea hot for hours and you won't be throwing away paper cups or plastic mugs.
Get It In Glass
Buy your milk and juice in glass bottles. Buy your soft drinks and other cold beverages in aluminum cans. Avoid plastic whenever you can. It's better for your health and the environment.
Compost: It's Easier Than You Think
Put a compost bin in your apartment or backyard. It's easy, cheap and clean. Use your homemade compost to feed your garden and house plants or donate it to your local community garden.
Reduce Paper Consumption
Buy 100% post consumer recycled paper, envelopes, file folders etc. Print only what you need. Need a back up? Send it to your gmail account. Use PowerPoint for presentations and offer to email a copy in lieu of snail mail. Switch to e-billing for utility bills and bank statements.
Reduce Energy Consumption
Switch to compact fluorescent lights; they use less energy and last 10 times longer. Try solar lights for your garden or outdoor walkways. Get a programmable thermostat. Change air and dryer filters regularly. Use cold water for washing clothes and hang them out to dry. Turn down/off heat when sleeping and when leaving the house. Turn off lights when not in the room. Unplug appliances when not in use. Things like chargers, cell phones, laptops, toasters, coffee pots, tea kettles, microwaves all consume electricity even when off. Boil only as much water as you need; don't boil a full kettle for one cup of tea!
Reduce Water Use
Don't let the water run when you're brushing your teeth. Get a toilet tank displacement bag to reduce water usage per flush. Flush only when necessary. When washing dishes by hand, reuse your rinse water for your plants or garden. Save your bath and shower water and use it for your garden or lawn. Use cooled pasta water for your house plants.
Reduce Fuel Consumption and Your Carbon Footprint
Walk, ride, take transit, or carpool everywhere. Get in shape and help reduce your carbon footprint. Once a week? Twice? Everyday? It all makes a difference. Can't walk or bike to and from just yet? Ride to work, take the bus home, bus to work the next day and ride home. Baby steps.