It is easy to feel inundated with what one should and should not do in terms of saving Mother Earth. After all, the blazing path to ‘going Green’ seems eternal in areas like California and Colorado. It certainly qualifies as one of the latest fads, with celebrities condoning lifestyle changes in Green’s name.
However, there remain numerous other ways in which the masses could go Green and not break the bank. These are not the ideas already commonly implemented in middle to upper class homes. Not CFLs, recycling, or buying local produce. And certainly not the costly hybrid cars (though, I purchased one and have not looked back). Been there and done that. These are (hopefully) too uncommon still but minimally invasive and superbly gratifying.
1. Go paperless at airports!
Not all airports are up to speed, but a growing list is maintained through the Transportation Security Administration (TSA)’s website. Fear it won’t work? I have used it multiple times, and I don’t own the i-Phone or a Droid. So if you have any phone that has data, do it!
2. Reuse sandwich bags
Ziploc, Kroger, Giant-it doesn’t matter which brand you use. Most of the time one use does not infuse trashcan-worthy nastiness in any baggie. Wash it with soap and set to dry if it really bothers you. My parents have done this for 30+ plus years for the sheer cost-savings.
3. Use polythene grocery bags for small trashcans
Yet another goodie from my parents. I admit that I used to buy the fancy trash bags because they are so cheap. Then I wondered why. Just because they look prettier? Who cares-it’s trash! Anyone who judges your guest bathroom based on the Target bag gracing its decor is not anyone worth inviting over.
4. Turn the water off while brushing!
Apparently, faucets have a flow rate somewhere in the realm of 0.8-2.5 gallons per minute depending on the source of information. Regardless, for the two-three minutes spent brushing, that’s probably about three gallons of water saved if only the faucet was not left running.
5. Keep plastic containers and glass bottles
I used to chastise my own mom for this one, and the irony of this helpful hint gloats in my face as I type it. Yes, what she figured out as a cost savings measure turns out to be a great way to saving our landfills from the burden of more junk. Containers from yogurt or bottles from spaghetti sauce. Or plastic restaurant takeout containers. Baby food jars make great spice keepers. Basically anything with a lid. The best part? They are usually dishwasher safe.