How To Be Carbon Neutral: 16 Ways To Reduce Your Footprint
Many people are not aware of their carbon footprint and daily greenhouse gas creation. Unfortunately, the carbon levels of the planet continue to rise, causing multiple complex problems and contributing toward global warming.
That’s why everyone should try to take steps to reduce the carbon footprint they release into the atmosphere, no matter how small.
Check out some easy but functional ideas below if you’d like to cut your carbon footprint but don’t know where to begin.
Why is it important to lower our global carbon footprint?
Lower carbon emissions will mean lower impacts of climate change which will benefit the planet. Fewer carbon emissions mean that the sea and water temperature rise levels will be slower. When there are fewer carbon emissions, air quality improves, there are fewer extreme weather changes, and the economy boosts.
Cutting your carbon footprint will positively affect the environment around you.
The 16 Top Tips to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
1. Stop buying plastic bottled water
Plastic bottles are harmful to the environment and they release carbon gasses, so if you stop using them, you’ll cut your carbon footprint. It’s much better to go for glass water bottles or purchase a tap water filter. There are also great reusable bottles that you could try out. If you still decide that plastic bottles are your preference, recycle them to lower their carbon effect after use.
2. Turn off lights and appliances
Less energy spent means less carbon goes to the atmosphere. You should always turn off lights and appliances when you’re not using them. Unplugging your appliances when not in use will also prolong their lifespan. You’ll be able to live a greener life, and your utility bills will also be lower, so it’s a win-win situation.
3. Use alternative transportation
Gas cars release many carbon emissions, so alternative transportation will help you reduce your carbon footprint. Instead of driving somewhere, it’s better to use buses, trains, or ride a bike. You could also invest in an electric vehicle with a lower carbon footprint if you have the budget.
4. Insulate your home
Proper insulation means that your home will be cooler during the summer months and warmer during wintertime. Insulation will help you lower your electricity bills and keep your house at the proper temperature while reducing greenhouse emissions.
5. Install solar panels or shingles
Although going solar sounds like a big step, it will positively impact you and the planet. Solar panels or shingles can help you lower your bills, get the investment back promptly and increase your property value. On top of that, they would help you reduce your carbon footprint.
6. Switch to organic, locally-grown foods
Buying organic products is a great way to lower your greenhouse footprint because they don’t rely on harmful fertilizers and pesticides to grow. Instead, they are grown naturally, which has many health benefits while not releasing toxic fumes into the environment. Also, buying from locals will mean your food will be fresher and lower your carbon footprint, while you’ll support small business owners and help them grow.
Since extraction and processing of raw materials release many greenhouse emissions, recycling can help you reduce your carbon footprint. By simply avoiding non-reusable products, you can help the planet while saving some money.
8. Eat less meat and dairy products
Meat and dairy products have a significant footprint on the environment, so you should try to eat them less. By eating less dairy and meat, you will reduce your carbon footprint. Also, cutting these items out of your diet or using them less can positively affect your health.
9. Set the proper temperature on the thermostat
It’s best to set your thermostat to 78 during summer and 67 during wintertime. Also, turn off the AC/heating when you’re not home. The greenhouse gasses you produce will be lower, and your electricity bills will decrease.
10. Plant trees and shrubs in your yard
Planting trees and shrubs in your yard will help you turn your yard into a peaceful oasis, while the plants will release more oxygen into the air and reduce carbon emissions. Planting trees, shrubs, and other plants is simple, and it’s a great way to help the environment.
11. Shop for vintage/recycled clothing
Instead of spending tons of money on new clothing, it would be better to shop for vintage or recycled clothing. This clothing can be just as beautiful as something brand new, but won’t cost a fortune and will help you reduce your carbon footprint.
12. Donate old clothing
Many people throw away old clothing, which is certainly not environmentally friendly, and it would be far better to donate it. By donating, you’ll help someone get new clothing and find a helpful way to get rid of something you no longer need.
13. Get energy-saving appliances
Another great way to reduce your carbon footprint is to invest in energy-saving appliances. They operate on less energy than regular appliances, so they will immediately cut your carbon footprint and lower your bills. Any product with an energy star means the product is very efficient.
14. Use less water
Using less water is a great way to help with reducing the environmental carbon footprint. Making water-efficient choices will help you save on water, and the carbon emissions you release will become lower. You could install drip irrigation for your plants or purchase water-efficient appliances.
Gardeners know that it can be hard to grow plants without harmful chemicals that release toxins into the air. Still, compost is an efficient way to help your plants grow and reduce your carbon footprint. You can start making compost today, and you’ll see a huge difference in your plants once you start using it.
16. Set the washer on cold
Setting the washer on cold instead of hot water is another great way to decrease your carbon footprint. The washer uses less power when set on cold wash so that will automatically mean fewer greenhouse gasses will go into the atmosphere.
There are things each one of us can do to lower our carbon footprint. Although many of the things on the list don’t sound like a big deal, if only a couple of people would begin to follow at least one tip on the list, the world would be a greener place. Keep that in mind when you make your everyday choices to help with reducing greenhouse emissions.
Featured Image Credit: marcinjozwiak, Pixabay