Most of us plan to leave a legacy for our children and grandchildren. Perhaps one of the greatest legacies is the way we live right now. We can choose to live purposeful lives that are greater than we are.
Our children and grandchildren face the biggest challenge ever: climate change. One of our greatest gifts to them and the world will be to live more environmentally friendly at this moment in time. By living a greener lifestyle, we will impact the climate crisis directly, and the next generations will thrive from our choices.
Living green is much easier than you may think.
Here Are 14 Simple Steps for Living Greener:
Turn off the lights, TV, and computer when not in use. Leaving electronics on standby wastes energy.
Use only energy-efficient appliances and electronics. These products save money and reduce energy output.
Change to LED light bulbs. They last longer than conventional bulbs and are far more efficient.
Use a microwave. They’re much more energy efficient compared to conventional ovens.
Eat less meat. Meat products have larger carbon footprints than grains and vegetables. Try eating meat two meals less often per week than you normally would.
Reduce your plastic usage. Use canvas bags for shopping, and purchase fruits and vegetables not wrapped in plastic. Use a refillable thermos bottle for water, not bottled water.
Insulate your home. It’s greener for your home and the environment.
Be sure to use green cleaning products like white vinegar, baking soda, and lemons. There are plenty of recipes for old-fashioned remedies our mothers and grandmothers used.
Fix stuff. Don’t just throw it away; this is very environmentally friendly.
Buy better clothes. Small tweaks to your wardrobe help decrease your carbon footprint. “Fast fashion” is the technical term for brands that churn out high volumes of low-quality clothing meant to last only a season or two. Clothing factories emit toxic dyes and plastic microfibers into the environment. And disposal of worn-out clothing adds nearly 100 million tons of solid waste a year.
Don’t buy personal care products containing microbeads (small bits of solid, non-biodegradable plastic). These are found in body washes, toothpaste, and face scrubs. They pollute water sources and eventually enter our food chain.
Buy local. This supports the local economy and reduces carbon.
Plant more trees to replace those that have been destroyed.
Fly less. Taking fewer round-trip flights shrinks your personal carbon footprint.
For additional ideas on how to live a more green lifestyle, check out these organizations:
Cynthia Arnold founded One Earth United to promote Indigenous arts as a powerful way to inspire connections among cultures. As a PR pro, she has worked in media relations garnering placements in major publications such as New York Times, USA Today, and in regional dailies across the country. She attended Penn State and graduated with honors from Ohio University with a BSJ and PR specialization.