To create an eco-friendly, sustainable home, there’s no need for any drastic changes or over-the-top investment. Just the opposite–through a few simple everyday acts, you can make big changes that reduce your footprint on the planet.
Today, in Inalcotrends, we give ten tips on how to be eco-friendlier at home, with no great effort.
1. Don’t forget any of the Rs!
The classic three “Rs” (reduce, recycle and re-use) have been extended to seven, with these new additions: reflect before you purchase anything, refuse non eco-friendly products, reconsider the source of what you buy (taking into account the principle of fair trade) and react by protesting at irresponsible environmental behaviour.
2. Create your own personal green lung
There’s no better way of cleaning and purifying the air than creating a corner of the home with plants. For it to really work, find a luminous spot where the plants aren’t exposed to direct sunlight. To make it particularly attractive, you can also place the plants at different heights or contrast differing sized ones.
3. Buy seasonal produce
Buy local, organic, seasonal produce. Fruit and vegetables that are in season are tastier and cheaper than ones that aren’t. What’s more, by purchasing local produce, you’ll be helping farmers in your area and contributing to their survival. Needless to say, this produce is also far healthier, it’s not genetically modified, and it’s animal and environmentally-friendly.
4. Don’t waste the tiniest drop
Do you know how many litres of water are wasted if a tap is left on? One drop a second squanders about 30 litres of water a day, so instead of leaving that pesky cistern or tap to drip, get it fixed as soon as you can.
What’s more, we also suggest that you shorten your showers, because too much water is wasted this way. There’s no need to use up all the planet’s hot water!
5. Buy BIG
We all know that small packages generate infinitely more waste than big ones and, proportionally, they’re more expensive. Always bear this in mind when you buy food, drink, cleaning products and so on, and opt for big sizes.
Another alternative is to buy loose products and take your own containers. More and more supermarkets are offering this option and there are even shops that specialize in this. As well as generating less pollution, this system also saves on money.
6. Lighting is fine but save on energy too
Another simple step you can take at home is to change any conventional light bulbs for led ones. It’s true that they’re a bit more expensive, but they’re long-lasting and you’ll make really big energy savings.
7. Don’t leave devices on stand-by
Be particularly careful not to leave electronic devices on when they’re not in use. Try to make sure that everything is turned off and unplugged before you go out–you won’t just save money on your electricity bill, you’ll also reduce your daily carbon emissions.
8. Dress your home up as you would like to dress
For the sake of the environment and your own skin, make sure you buy bed linen (blankets, sheets, towels etc.) with an eco-label and/or linen that is not treated with toxic inks. Also check that it’s made of natural fibres, like cotton or wool, because fabrics made from crude-oil by-products generate a lot of pollution.
9. Take advantage of nature
We know that not everyone can afford to invest large amounts in changing windows, building terraces or fitting solar panels. That’s why we’d like to suggest a few simple ways of making good use of nature: by taking maximum advantage of sunlight, painting walls white or choosing another colour with lots ofluminosity, and opening windows at home to ensure good ventilation.
10. Introduce “Oven Day”
Ovens are one of the electrical appliances with the highest energy consumption in homes. That’s why, when you turn the oven on, it’s a good idea to cook several dishes at the same time to take full advantage of it. The oven’s residual heat can be used to finish off the dishes, and don’t keep opening and closing the door because that way you’ll lose most of the heat that has built up inside it.
These are just a few examples of the steps you can take in your home without investing large amounts of time, effort or money. We urge you to rethink how you do things at home and to make it a far more sustainable place, because it may well be true that “nobody can do it all, but together we can all do something”.