Ten Ways To Save The Planet Without Losing Your Mind

Check back every Monday for more ways to incorporate living green into your everyday life!

Going Green may seem overwhelming at times. You may think if you don’t go all the way why bother. But every little thing you do, does count. Don’t think that you have to have solar panels on your house to make a difference. Here are some small things you can do to help save the planet:

  1. Going to the car wash. Professional car washes are often more efficient with water use. They also dispose of the water properly, while when you wash your car at home metal and other toxic chemicals are washed in to the sewer and end up in our water ways. For a bigger impact use a waterless car wash like Eco Touch.
  2. Bring your own mug. Reusable mugs keep your drink warm longer, while saving a lot of waste. Most coffee shops will happily refill your mug and some even offer discounts. For a bigger impact only buy coffee at shops that use fair trade coffee.
  3. Skip the coffee stirrer. Americans throw away over 138 billion straws and stirrers. Put your sugar and cream in first and the coffee will stir itself. For a bigger impact skip straws in your soda. If you need the straw switch to glass or stainless stain straws.
  4. Be kind when you kill. Use vinegar to kill weeds. It will save you money and won’t hurt the environment or any pets or people. For a bigger impact skip fertilizer and just let your normal clippings do the work.
  5. Recycle those wire hangers. Wire hangers are almost always steel, which is not recycled by all recycling programs. Most dry cleaners will take them back. For a bigger impact buy hangers made from recycled plastic or other sustainable materials.
  6. Stop your junk mail. On average each American gets 40 pounds of junk mail each year. Services like Green Dimes will help you stop your junk mail. For a bigger impact stop receiving phone books and start using online directories to find phone numbers.
  7. Give it away. Before you throw something away, stop and think if someone else could use it. Either donate it or use a site likefreecycle.org. For a bigger impact if you can’t donate it find a way to reuse it in a craft or in some other way.
  8. Only wash full loads. You use the same energy and water to wash one shirt as you will to wash a whole load. You will save money on electric and water bills. For a bigger impact wash everything in cold or warm water.
  9. Skip the receipt at the ATM. It would save a roll of paper more than 2 billion feet long, or enough to circle the equator 15 times. For a bigger impact pay bills online. If everyone would pay online we could save around 18.5 million trees a year!
  10. Download your software. Software is often available for download. It will save you space and a lot of cds and packaging waste. For a bigger impact download your music from iTunes or similar sites.