Earth Hour is a campaign designed to call attention to the effects of climate change.
This year, Earth Hour took place on Saturday March 25th and was the biggest to date. If you missed it, don't worry, we have some fantastic suggestions that can help you reduce your carbon footprint while living in an apartment.
Reduce and Reuse
By reducing the amount of non-recyclables you bring into your home, you can easily cut back on the amount of garbage you produce on a regular basis. Take reusable bags to the grocery store and mall, bring glass or plastic containers for lunch, and use your travel mugs for your morning coffee or tea! When reusable items aren't possible, try to make decisions that will help you eliminate waste as much as possible. Buy items in bulk to avoid throwing away a lot of packaging, think of ways you can reuse sturdy packaging, and research the proper ways to dispose of your waste -- does your building have a compost program? Where can you properly dispose of electronics, batteries and cleaning products?
Buying fresh food at the Farmer's Market not only tastes great, it has a big impact on the environment. Shopping locally, for locally sourced and manufactured products, reduces the amount of greenhouse gases and fuel needed for transportation. Many families have even opted for a new trend: Meatless Mondays, to help reduce even more pollutants.
Use Energy Efficiently
When we use energy efficiently, we create less waste. Buying energy star appliances, using CFL or LED light bulbs, and unplugging any unnecessary electronic devices reduces the amount of energy we use. Washing full loads using cold water and air drying when possible are other great ideas that will help you use less energy. Additionally, keeping your drapes closed during hot summer days and open during the winter will reduce the amount of heat and air conditioning you'll need in your apartment.
Be Environmentally Conscious
- Walk instead of using a car, or take public transit.
- Use green cleaning products or make your own using natural ingredients.
- Have leaks and other small repairs in your apartment fixed right away.
- Donate your old clothing instead of throwing it out.
- Compost organics with your own mini compost pail.
There are many things you can do while living in an apartment that will have a big environmental impact. Even if you start small, it's worth it! And keep in mind, next year's Earth Hour falls on Saturday March 31st, 2018!