The Green New Year
Rather than making personal resolutions this year, I’d like to focus on ways I can better care for the environment. I call it the green new year – a play on words from Roosevelt’s Green New Deal. If you’d like to take part in this challenge with me, continue reading!
The Green New Year
Shop with Reusable Grocery Bags
Did you know that, according to the Center for Biological Diversity, it takes 1,000 years for plastic bags to break down? And Americans use an average of 365 plastic bags per person per year? These facts are kind of scary! You may think that you can’t make a difference if you’re the only one making a change, but that’s simply not true. If everyone thought that way then nothing at all would change. By shopping with reusable grocery bags, you can save 365 plastic bags from going to the landfill each year! And who knows, you could influence others to do the same! My mom started reusing the paper bags from Trader Joe’s whenever she goes shopping. You can also easily purchase reusable bags on Amazon.
Use Your Own Coffee Mug
When you go to coffee shops, they often let you use your own coffee mug. Starbucks gives you ten cents off if you use one of their reusable cups every time you get coffee. Other coffee shops often do the same. According to FoodPrint, most paper coffee cups cannot be recycled because of the plastic lining inside of the cup. Plastic cups for iced coffees are also non-recyclable because of the type of plastic used to make them.
Stop Using Plastic Water Bottles
Listen. We all know that plastic water bottles are not good for the environment, and we can easily avoid using them! If you prefer filtered water, invest in a Brita water filter. Buy a few stainless steel or glass water bottles, or really any water bottle you don’t throw away after a single-use. I understand sometimes using plastic water bottles is unavoidable, but try to make it a goal next year to use as few as possible, or ideally none.
Use Food Storage Containers
Any time you can, store food and snacks in eco-friendly food storage containers instead of plastic bags. According to One Green Planet, the average person uses 540 plastic sandwich bags per year! When packing the kids’ lunches in 2022, use the Eco Lunch Box from Amazon. It may seem pricey, but it is a one-time purchase, rather than a weekly purchase of sandwich bags. Amazon also has a variety of silicone, stainless steel, or glass food storage containers.
Ladies: Switch to Green Hygiene Products Next Year
You can easily switch to organic tampons, applicator-free tampons, or even a menstrual cup for the same price, or a lower price. Grove Collaborative explains that organic tampons are eco-friendly because they are made of BPA-free plastic, plant-based plastic, or biodegradable cardboard. Not to mention, they are better for your body. If you decide to go the most eco-friendly route, the menstrual cup, you will save money over the long run. This route isn’t for everyone, but if you find you like it, then you should switch for good! Tampon users use around 11,000 – 13,000 tampons in their lifetime, so using organic tampons, or ditching them all together is the best option for a better you and a better world. Visit Cosmopolitan for the “18 Best Organic Tampon Brands” and Good Housekeeping for the “18 Best Menstrual Cups 2021.”
Launch Into the New Year with CHARGEit!