Become an Eco-Warrior With These Tips and Products
It seems that there is no shortage of bad news for Mother Earth. Constant reports regarding the demise of the Great Barrier reef, accelerating rates of deforestation in the Amazon, and devastating footage of the negative effects of plastic, fill up our social feeds and dominate primetime news. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A0FEPWE2SgE If you’re wondering what you can do to treat Mother Earth with a little more respect and become an Eco-Warrior, I am here to show you.
Be Environmentally Friendly
Before I reveal some of my favorite eco-friendly and environmentally helpful products, here is some general and EASY advice on how to be a friend to our planet.
- Live by the principle of Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Use less, reuse as much as possible as many times as possible, and recycle the hell out of your stuff! Playing a part in becoming environmentally friendly will have it benefits, especially if everyone started living like this. Some people have even taken it to the next level and have started to look into sustainable investing. If this is a topic you want to find out more about, an article on esg investing (investing in an ethical way) would be something worth reading. The more passionate people are about saving the environment, the better it will be in the future.
- Turn the water off when not in use. When you’re shampooing your hair, turn the water off. When you’re brushing your teeth, turn the water off. If you do this each day, you can save gallons of water each year.
- Place a brick in the tank of your toilet. After each flush, the tank on the back of your toilet fills back up. By adding a brick to your tank, it will require less water to fill up, thus, saving water!
- Clean your beach. When visiting a beach, park, or preserve, don’t just take your trash with you – take the trash of other beachgoers. If you see trash, pick it up – regardless if it is yours. Leave wherever you were visiting cleaner than when you found it.
- Don’t pour out your ice. Too many people throw their unused ice cubes into the sink. Instead, let them thaw and use that water to feed your plants.
- Say no to plastic. When out to a restaurant, ask your server to not give you plastic straws (more on that in a bit), and ask if they have any bamboo straws available instead. Bring your own reusable shopping bags with you – not just to the grocery store, but everywhere. Don’t use balloons for weddings, birthday parties, etc. Honestly, balloons should get their own category – don’t get me started on balloons. When buying office equipment for at home or at work, try to not buy cheap plastic keyboards and instead go for quality ones. This will in the long run mean that you are not throwing away as many keyboards that have broken due to cheap materials. Business should also try to do this too by using industrial ruggedised keyboards instead of regular ones. You can browse for them here at http://www.cksglobal.net/product-category/industrial-keyboards/.
- Use less power. Unplug electronics when not in use. If you can keep your refrigerator full, it will require less power to keep the items cool! Don’t turn your A/C off, instead turn the temperature up. When you’re ready to cool off, it won’t have to work as hard. This also applies to most cars. Turning your car off and then back on can use more gas, than if you were to leave your car running.
- Support companies that do not test on animals. Duh. Do I need to explain this one?
Environmentally Friendly Products
1. Reusable Utensils To-Go
Think of all the plastic utensils you use once and then throw away during the year. According to WholeFoodsMagazine.com in 2011, “It is estimated that close to 40 billion individual plastic utensils-meaning 14 and 18 billion plastic spoons-are produced each year, and with such low rates of reuse and recycling, most of them end up in our landfills, beaches and oceans.” To combat this, many Eco-Warriors are turning to reusable, bamboo utensils.These bamboo utensils travel with you and come with a cool carrying case. So, when you have that random craving for quinoa, you can eat guilt free with your reusable utensils. Buy a few sets – one for your car, one for your purse, and one to give as a gift! For under $11, you can’t beat that!
2. Stainless Steel Straws
Plastic straws are deadly animals. Many accredited zoos and aquariums, such as SeaWorld, prohibit plastic straws and use paper straws in their place. Unfortunately, most businesses have not caught up and throw plastic straws in your drinks whether you use them or not. While people use these plastic straws in bliss, our friends in the ocean suffer tremendously. Warning: The following video is graphic. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4wH878t78bw What can you do to help? Switch to stainless steel, reusable straws. Just like your bamboo utensils, you bring your chic looking straws with you wherever you go. Plus, they fit easily into your existing utensil carrying case.My initial concern was how to keep a straw clean. Well, it comes with a nifty scrub brush to ensure your straw is clean inside and out. Sometimes a set of four will cost $25, however, at the time of writing you can get the same set for $7! Sounds like a win to me!
3. Cardboard Free Toilet Paper
According to the company that produces Scotts toilet paper, “the 17 billion toilet paper tubes produced annually in the USA account for 160 million pounds of trash…and could stretch more than a million miles placed end-to-end. That’s from here to the moon and back — twice.” Wow! Don’t worry though. The same company that conducted this research is also offering an alternative – Scotts Tube Free Toilet Paper!Plus, it’s cheaper than most rolls! A pack of 24 rolls is going to cost you about $14. So, click the link and order you some tube free toilet paper.
4. Sand Free Beach Blankets
To clarify, I have NOT used these blankets but can’t wait to try one! Regardless of how it helps the environment, how great would it be to leave ALL the sand at the beach!It is all about minimizing our footprint on this Earth. So, by leaving the sand where it belongs, we are doing just that. Plus, who wants sand in their car anyway? For $35, you can get your very own Lagu beach blanket.
5. Reusable Shopping Bags
Fortunately, this has become pretty common among Eco-Warriors. However, don’t forget to utilize your reusable bags in all situations – not just grocery shopping. Whether you are back to school shopping or shopping for clothes – reuse the bags you already have.You can find a ton of reusable bags for sale on Amazon.
6. Reusable Cups
If you frequent trips to gas stations or coffee shops, bring your reusable cup/mug with you. Not only will you be cutting down on waste, but you may save some money! Many coffee chains (yes, Starbucks is included on this list) offer discounts to customers who bring in their own mug! They’re easy to clean and you can buy them in cool patterns to make them a little more exciting. If you’re not sure which reusable bottle would be best for you, check out this hydroflask and yeti comparison review.
One of the best reusable cups out there is the Hydroflask. They keep your liquid hot or cold all day long! Pick one up here.
7. Biodegradable Waste Bag
Please pick up after your dog and please us a bag that is environmentally friendly. A bag that is biodegradable won’t take up valuable space in our landfills and if not disposed up properly, is less likely to reek havoc on our environment.My dog, Callie, only gets the best, so her poop is only cleaned up with biodegradable waste bags. 🙂
Just The Start
This is all a great start, but there is more to do…and more people to do it. The more of us who start to reduce, reuse, and recycle, the more others will be inspired to make a change and the more animals we can save. As an animal behaviorist and lifelong animal advocate, the well-being of all animals is my priority. It’s easy to make a difference and it starts with us. Of course, these are only a few of the many eco-conscious products available. If you would like one added to the list, just send me an e-mail or leave a comment in the section below!
I thnik this is great! Personally, Im not a huge fan of the reduce, reuse, recycle campain. I think it would be so much better if its reduce and ruse, THEN recycle. Because if you reduce and reuse proucts, it massively minimizes what needs to be recycled in the first place. Recycling is a better option than ending up in a landfill, but it still takes a decent amount of energy to use. Plus, with how big ONE individual’s carbon footprint is in first world countries, reducing should be emphasized a whole lot more.
Just a thought!
If you live more inland and don’t live by the beach, you can still pick up trash around your area. For example, I’ll be at the grocery store parking lot and I see a plastic bag or some trash, I pick it up and throw it away into a trash can. Luckily, my grocery store have a bin for plastic bags. I think about how trash/litter travels from all over the place and would eventually wind up in the ocean.