Save the planet with simple changes to your everyday routine.
We’re all different – but every human has one thing in common: our home! We’ve taken our planet for granted, and climate change has begun to affect us all. The facts are undeniable: ice caps are melting, sea levels are rising, and natural disasters are spreading. Scientists across the globe agree that reducing greenhouse gas emissions – a.k.a., your carbon footprint – should be a top priority. Since the Industrial Revolution, human activity has drastically increased greenhouse gas emissions. These gasses – including carbon dioxide and methane – get trapped in our atmosphere, speeding the process of climate change. But how can we help, really? It’s an intimidating question.
Climate change is scary for most of us (it’s normal to feel on edge about the fate of our planet!), and our lives often seem too busy to prioritize conservation. But healing the earth doesn’t have to be stressful! Physician Selected believes in creating science-driven wellness and sharing lifestyle tips that can make our bodies – and our planet – healthier. Below we’ve listed five stress-free and effective ways to reduce your greenhouse gas emissions. And the best part is, you can start today!
1. Unplug, unplug, unplug!
Whenever you walk out of a room, turn off your electronics. Switch off overhead lights, lamps, fans – and don’t forget your tv. There’s no reason to keep your true-crime documentary running with no one to watch. (We promise Netflix won’t miss you after you’ve left the room!)
BONUS: you can save money on your electric bill each month by simply turning off all electronics that aren’t being used. Also, consider unplugging electronics from the wall to save even more money – and energy.
2. Have reusable bags on standby
The next time you go grocery shopping, reduce the plastic in our landfills by keeping a few reusable grocery bags in the back of your car. If you don’t have any reusable bags, you can buy some at almost any grocery store for a low price. And the best part is, it’s a one-time purchase that will get hundreds of uses!
BONUS: try this hamper hack. If you have an extra laundry hamper, put it in the back of your car or trunk. When bagging up your groceries, ask the cashier to place them back into the cart. Drive the cart up to your trunk, and place the groceries into the laundry hamper. No more trips back and forth from the car – you can simply pick up the hamper and bring in all your groceries at once! No extra money spent, no plastic used, no time wasted.
3. Turn off the faucet when you brush
It’s no surprise that water supply is diminishing as our planet’s climate changes. As global temperatures rise, the demand for water will increase, while the freshwater supply decreases. We need to protect this vital resource now more than ever! Leaving the sink running while brushing your teeth can waste up to four gallons of water with each brush. (That’s a shocking 32 gallons of water in a four-person household brushing twice per day!) Try switching the faucet off while actively brushing, and turn it back on only when you rinse.
BONUS: by saving water with better teeth-brushing habits, you can save money on your monthly water bill!
4. Carpool with friends whenever possible
Dinner date reservations? A family reunion? Another work meeting? Hitch a ride with someone else who is attending, or offer to drive a group of people!
BONUS: you can save money on gas by taking turns carpooling with friends. Plus, you can spend some extra quality time on the way to the function with family members you haven’t seen since the holidays!
5. Shop at a local thrift store
Fashion practices have become increasingly harmful to our planet. In 2019, discarded clothing amounted to 62 million metric tons of waste in our global landfills. To put that number into perspective, picture a fully loaded garbage truck emptying discarded clothing into a landfill, every single second of every single day – each year.
The next time you go on a shopping spree, consider trying out local consignment or thrift stores first. And thrifting doesn’t have to cramp your style! For more ideas, check out these thrifting fashion influencers who combine trendy outfits with sustainable practices.
BONUS: you can save money on items that look just as good as pieces from a designer catalog. Plus, many thrifted items are as good quality – if not better – than the materials used by big businesses.
At a United Nations meeting in 2019, speakers warned governmental leaders that humanity only has 11 years left to reverse the damage to our planet caused by greenhouse gasses. Scientists predict that if we don’t slow the effects of greenhouse gasses, we will be pushed past the limits of adaptation. Our planet is in a serious crisis.
We can all help save the planet we call home – by making changes in our own home! Physician Selected’s mission is to share healthy lifestyle habits and wellness practices based on scientific facts. Check out this resource for more ideas on lowering your greenhouse gas emissions, or visit the United Nations’ website to learn about scientific discoveries, donation funds, and global climate action.