Tips for Eco-Friendly Apartment Living in 2021
New Years’ Resolutions can sometimes feel overwhelming, but setting goals to be more eco-friendly will help you live happier, healthier and more mindfully. If you’re ready for good intentions to become good habits, these seven tips from Forth at Navigation will go a long way towards reducing waste and living greener.
1. Reusable water bottles
One of the easiest ways to go green can also save you money and space. Rather than buying single-use plastic bottles, consider drinking from a reusable water bottle instead. Multiple designs and sizes help show off your personality (and even make drinking water fun) and there are many types that keep your water cold for long periods of time.
2. Reusable containers and wraps for food storage
Many of us grew up using plastic bags and foil to pack up leftovers or lunch, but technology has come a long way in recent years. We now have multiple options that keep food fresher longer and lead to less waste, including reusable silicone bags, airtight containers, and even reusable beeswax wrapping paper.
3. Use a small kitchen composting system to reduce waste
Did you know that fruit and vegetable scraps can be put to good use? You can save leftover onions, carrots, celery, garlic and herbs by freezing them, then simmering them with water to make flavorful stock for soups and stews. For eggshells and non reusable scraps, consider adding a small compost bin to your kitchen. Even if you don’t garden yourself, participating in a compost program will ensure that your food waste will achieve new life. There are even some companies that offer pick-up and drop-off.
4. Avoid setting the temperature drastically high or low on the thermostat
Turning the thermostat up or down can become a default way of staying comfortable when temperatures change. But turning the air up or down by several degrees uses a lot of energy and electricity, which causes a rise in greenhouse gases and monthly electric bills. During winter months, keep curtains open in windows to let in light and heat, and cozy up with warm clothing to stay comfortable.
5. Let the dishwasher do the dirty work for you
Dishwashers can really be time savers, and it turns out they can be water savers, too. Though running the dishwasher when you have a full load is the most efficient way to use the appliance, even running small loads can save more water than washing dishes in the sink.
6. Take advantage of natural light, and unplug appliances when you aren’t using them
The less electricity you need to use, the better it will be on the planet and your wallet. The easiest way to limit unnecessary electricity use is to keep lights off when they aren’t needed. Take advantage of sunlight in the windows, and make sure lights are off when you leave a room. Additionally, unplug kitchen and bathroom appliances when possible. For example, your coffee machine and toaster can be plugged in before use and unplugged afterwards.
7. Take the stairs rather than the elevator
One free and easy way to reduce electric energy is to take the stairs rather than the elevator when possible. Getting into a habit of taking the stairs for short trips not only builds stamina, it also means less waiting for you and others in the building.