12 ways to live a sustainable lifestyle (and save money)

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12 ways to live a sustainable lifestyle and save money

Developing a sustainable lifestyle is made up of many healthy habits that we can practice, and that will give us the possibility not only of improving our environment, but they are also a way of promoting the economy and having healthier means and foods.

We live in a modern world where most people consume and pollute. Instead of leading a life of constant waste, we should prove a point by being as sustainable and self-sufficient as possible. This effort is a great way to help the earth and save money.

12 tips for a more sustainable life

Here are 12 ways you can live a more sustainable lifestyle (and save money in the long run).

1. Grow your own food

Instead of getting in your car to go to the store and releasing toxins into the air and buying food that had to be transported and possibly packaged, grow your fruits and vegetables at home.

Do a little research to find out what foods grow best in your area and how to grow them. When the time comes, you’ll have the freshest vegetables you could get. In addition, you will know exactly how they were raised and what they were treated with since you yourself were the one who cultivated them.

2. Recycle

Recycling is the process of collecting used material and reusing it, instead of throwing it away to continue piling up the world’s overcrowded landfills. Not everything can be recycled, but there are many items that can be taken to a recycling center which will recycle them into a new, reusable form.

Accumulate your plastic, paper and glass in separate containers specifically for recyclable materials. In some cases, you can even earn money from your recyclable materials.

3. Get rid of your car

Cars are a major source of air pollution, especially in metropolitan areas. Many people drive to work or the store when they can easily take an alternate method of transportation. If thanks to you there is one less car on the road and you walk or bike to work, you will be making a significant difference.

However, if walking or cycling is not a reasonable method for you, you can also consider public transportation. If that won’t work for getting around either, you can start carpooling at work.

This way you can save gas money by taking turns driving with other people from your job. You will also reduce the amount of pollutants in the air.

4. Install solar panels

One of the most exciting new sustainable inventions in recent years is the solar panel. You can place them in your home to generate electricity. Of course, you’ll still have backup power from your power company. However, since you produce your own electricity most of the time, your electricity bill will drop significantly or even to nothing.

Solar panels capture the sun’s rays and convert them into electricity. When you need to use it, it will be distributed throughout your house. Since this method requires the sun, it works best in sunny locations.

Solar panels generally go on top of your roof. However, Tesla has invented a roof made of solar panels. It’s expensive, but it’s attractive and it saves you money on utilities.

5. Buy from environmentally responsible companies

You have many options as a consumer. It’s your job to make responsible decisions about who you buy from. You should not only consider the price. You should also pay attention to the way the company packages its products and its manufacturing practices. There are reasons behind why a particular product is cheaper than the competition.

These items probably won’t last as long as the other options, which means you’ll spend more as you’ll need to constantly replenish them. Also, specific packaging and manufacturing processes can be more damaging.

6. Shop with reusable bags

Think of all the plastic bags that are used when people go shopping or to the local pharmacy. Although they are made of plastic, these bags cannot be recycled. In fact, some countries are even banning the use of plastic bags when shopping. Consider the future and use reusable bags.

There are sustainable bags designed to be used over and over again. This habit will eliminate the need to use plastic bags. Just don’t forget to take them with you when you go shopping.

7. Drive an electric car

If you can’t stop using your car, that doesn’t mean you can’t make responsible decisions about the vehicle you drive. Some vehicles are known to be “gas guzzlers.” That is, they consume a lot of fuel.

By using a car like this you will be forced to go to service stations more often and spend more money. Before buying vehicles, take this into account and compare different models and brands.

Fortunately, there are now electric and hybrid vehicles that don’t require as much gas. These vehicles rely on electricity or a combination of electricity and gasoline. You won’t have to stop for gas as often and you won’t release the same amount of pollution into the air.

8. Buy Energy Star appliances

Most modern homes have refrigerators, washing machines, dishwashers, and other appliances in order to make our lives easier. It is almost unheard of not to have these appliances at home.

However, these appliances consume a lot of electricity and water. As the years go by, they may even require even more to complete the same amount of work. But there are certain machines that are specifically designed to use less water and electricity than usual.

These appliances have an Energy Star sticker on them. This designation lets you know that the particular product adheres to a certain standard of efficiency. This way you will save money on your utility bills. In addition, you will be more sustainable.

9. Eat locally

Think about how food gets from where it was produced to your plate. In some cases, this involves extensive long-distance travel. This trip means throwing a lot of pollution into the air. Also, the food is no longer as fresh as it was originally when it finally arrives at its destination.

Instead of eating at places that require food to come from across the country, eat at restaurants and shop at farmers markets that only use food from local farmers and butchers. This meal is likely to be less expensive as it does not require travel costs.

Plus, it will be one of the freshest foods you can eat. In these types of establishments, the food probably did not have to be frozen at any time.

10. Use the air conditioning system wisely

It is completely unreasonable to assume that people can live through hot summers and freezing winters without an air conditioning system. And this fact is even more relevant if you live in a place with extreme weather. However, this means that you should use your system very carefully.

The first thing you need to do is get a unit with the Energy Star sticker we mentioned earlier. On the other hand, you also don’t need to set the unit to extreme temperatures.

Instead of setting the temperature to 20 degrees Celsius in the summer, leave it at 25. Obviously you want to feel cool and comfortable, but you don’t need to go overboard either. You should also consider using a smart thermometer.

The smart thermometer can change the temperature when there is no one in the house. Finally, it also tries to hire a maintenance by a professional technician each year.

11. Vote

It is your job as a citizen to vote on things that matter to you. Since we can’t vote on particular legislation, we must vote for people who bring environmental issues to the forefront. Research local, state, and national politicians to find out who will support you and others who want to live a more sustainable lifestyle.

12. Volunteer

There are a plethora of organizations working to combat environmental problems and promote sustainability efforts. So get involved with these organizations and volunteer. You can learn many things during your service.

You can also make a difference in your community. Look for organizations that strive to clean up nature and plant trees. There are also organizations designed to help animals.

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