15 eco-friendly habits to develop while in college
There is a misconception that a sustainable lifestyle requires you to invest money, time, and effort into it. However, the truth is that once you develop several useful habits, living in an eco-friendly manner will be second nature to you.
Our planet could use every bit of help we can provide it with. Even if you are not leading a completely green lifestyle, the small changes you may employ can have a long-lasting impact. If you are a student wondering how you can take on a sustainable living approach, we are here to help.
In this article, you will find 15 easy ways for you to live greener.
Check your device settings
The chances are, you are using multiple devices at once. They definitely consume a significant amount of power. However, if you didn’t know this already, most of these devices come equipped with energy-saver settings. The settings can also help you extend the life of your battery.
It may take some time to figure out how to fine-tune your gadgets though. Some of them may require more manual work rather than just turning on/off some functions. Just as with the customization of a new smartphone, you can spend a whole day on this process. So, try addressing EssayHub beforehand to make sure you keep up with your college assignments.
Switch to digital notes
Yes, there is indeed a charm in going old-school with a pen and paper. However, in this digitally-focused world, you will be perfectly comfortable with using tablets, apps, and entering notes on your laptop.
Similarly, you can also avoid buying hard copies of the textbooks and download a digital version instead. This will not only help you avoid using too much paper, but you can also save money in the process.
Thrift for clothes
Today’s thrift stores hold a variety of outfits that you can get at quite affordable prices. If you can find the right shops, you will be able to create outfits that look as good as new. Why spend hundreds of dollars when you can upcycle clothes that have barely been used?
Upcycling does not limit to clothes alone. In fact, you can devise storage boxes out of delivery packages and cardboards. You can reuse bottles as plant pots. You can even make tote bags out of old clothes instead of throwing them away.
Unplug your devices
We are in the habit of plugging in all our devices at all times, including charges and small appliances for convenience. However, these can use standby power, even when they are not in use. Whenever possible, try to flip the switch off and remove them from the power strip.
If you are living within the campus premises, you are likely to be on foot a lot. On the other hand, if you have an apartment off-campus, then you can try your best to avoid taking your car. Instead, try walking. If the distance is too long, you can invest in a bicycle. Alternatively, you can also rely on public transportation whenever possible.
Reduce your water consumption
Often, we are unaware of the amount of water we waste. When brushing your teeth, washing your face, or even doing the dishes, make sure that you do not leave the tap open. You can also save lots of water by reducing the time you spend showering.
Avoid plastic at grocery stores
When you think about it, there is no need to bag some vegetables and fruits at all. You are most likely to wash and put them into another basket at home.
If you still need bags, you can buy reusable ones made out of cotton or other long-lasting materials you can easily wash. Also, make it a habit to have a tote bag with you at all times. This will definitely come in handy and help you avoid purchasing more plastic bags.
Make informed purchases
In the US, approximately one pound of food is wasted per person. This equals about 30% to 40% of the total food produced. If you think about it, many of us tend to purchase food that we often end up not eating. Whenever you are buying groceries or ordering food at restaurants, make sure that you are only buying what you will eat.
Make your own cleaning products
Most of the cleaning at your dorm or home can be done using baking soda, lemon juice, and vinegar. Not so surprisingly, similar ingredients are also present in a majority of cleaning products these days.
Rather than buying an assortment of products, you can make your own ones by mixing the natural ingredients. This will help you skip the packaging and the extra cost.
Leverage the natural resources
You can reduce your dependency on artificial lighting by rearranging your room furniture. Start by keeping your study desks and reading chairs near the window. It will help you get the maximum out of the natural light. Make sure that there are no large objects blocking the radiator and insulate the windows properly.
In the modern consumerist culture, we are encouraged to spend money on buying things we don’t always need. Just because your friend has something does not mean you should purchase it too. You can even borrow the item and share the cost. Stick to buying only what is necessary.
Reduce meat consumption
Meat production requires a lot of energy and results in massive methane emissions. Eating less meat can help contribute to sustainability in many ways.
Although going vegetarian or vegan is the ideal scenario, not everyone might be willing to make such drastic changes in their lives. If you cannot avoid meat, try to reduce your consumption and switch to organic meat alternatives.
Support sustainable brands
Yes, they might cost you a little bit more. Yet, in the end, sustainable brands can help you adopt an eco-friendly lifestyle and influence the choice of the people you know. As more of them make this switch, such products will be available to everybody at lower prices.
Donations do not necessarily mean money. Many non-profits also accept clothes, laptops, utensils, cell phones, and furniture, as long as they are working and in good condition.
To sum up
Many of the actions listed here might seem to be too trivial or simple. However, in the long run, they can add up and help serve the environment. It is never too late to get started with your sustainable journey.