Eco-friendly changes that will benefit your family.
If you haven’t heard, our planet’s health is suffering. From climate change to depleting natural resources to food waste to garbage patches in the ocean, there’s a list of things threatening the environment’s ability to thrive. An effort from corporations and government agencies is necessary for change, but so is a commitment from individuals and families to adopt more eco-friendly behaviors and practices.
However, it’s difficult to know where to start, especially when you have to get your children and spouse on board with the change too. Fortunately, you’re in the right place.
Here are some tips for making your home and family lifestyle more eco-friendly.
Focus on saving water and energy
Two huge environmental issues are water and energy waste. The energy efficiency in the U.S. is just 42%. And the average family can waste 180 gallons of water per week, or 9,400 gallons of water annually, from household leaks alone.
If we’re going to take better care of our environment, we’ve got to use these valuable resources more effectively. That means cutting down energy consumption and saving water in your home.
To do the latter, start by encouraging everyone in your house to turn the water off while washing their hands, brushing their teeth, and doing dishes. Ask everyone to take shorter showers and only do laundry or dishes when it’s a full load.
You can reduce your family’s energy use and carbon footprint by simply turning off the lights when you aren’t there or when there’s sufficient natural lighting. It’s also a good idea to switch out fluorescent lightbulbs with energy-efficient ones. And consider getting a smart thermometer to manage the temperature in your home.
Change up your lawn and landscaping
Focus on the outside of your home as much as you do the inside when ramping up your eco-friendliness. Adjusting how you maintain your lawn and create your ideal landscape can significantly increase your family’s environmental friendliness.
Consider the following landscape and lawn changes to improve eco-friendliness:
- Make your lawn smaller
- Plant pollinator-supporting plants
- Use permeable paving for your pathways
- Get rid of weeds with eco-friendly products like mulch and vinegar
- Embrace weeds like dandelions and mugwort to make your soil healthier
- Only use native plants to ensure you aren’t depleting resources to care for them
Reduce plastic use
Plastic is one of the most dangerous things to our environment. It’s non-biodegradable and doesn’t decompose. Instead, it breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces until they’re so small animals and humans alike inhale them without knowing, disrupting our health.
Reducing plastic is critical in your efforts to become more eco-friendly. Cutting out single-use plastics in your household is a great place to start. Buy everyone a reusable water bottle, get a water filter for your sink, or purchase a water filter pitcher.
Get rid of plastic bags as well. Instead, throw a few reusable ones in your trunk to have them ready whenever it’s time to shop.
Get the kids involved
It’s much easier for adults to grasp the concept of eco-friendliness than for kids. Still, they must participate in making your house more environmentally friendly if your efforts are to be successful.
So, make sustainability fun and straightforward to understand when it comes to your kids.
For example, you could start a garden with your children. Show them what goes into growing their own food, and they’ll be more likely to respect and not waste it. You could also teach them about the environment through crafts. For example, educate them on recycling by using solely recyclable materials for an art project. Or head outdoors and collect twigs, leaves, flowers, rocks, and grass to make vases, bracelets, necklaces, and prints.
Lastly, you can really get your kids into sustainability by rewarding them every time they do an eco-friendly act.
For example, whenever they discard their waste in the proper bin (i.e., recycle, garbage, yard waste), give them a treat or money to put in their piggy bank. Even a simple high-five or praise will let them know they’re doing a good thing for themselves and the environment.
Transitioning to a more eco-friendly way of living presents nothing but positives for you and your family. Use the guidance above to make that transition stick. The environment will thank you too.