100 Ways To Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

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What Is A Carbon Footprint?

Our carbon footprint is a system of measurement designed to assess our total impact on the environment, including climate, by estimating how much carbon dioxide we produce in order to support our current lifestyles.

The following tips are designed to help you manage the impact of your carbon footprint by showing you how to green your homes and daily routines through small, simple and financially savvy changes.

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint In The Kitchen

  1. Buy energy-efficient appliances: These appliances help you save money and the environment
  2. Defrost your freezer to help it run more efficiently
  3. Disinfect your kitchen with vinegar: Learn more about using vinegar for green cleaning HERE
  4. Learn to compost: Composting is far easier and cleaner than you may think
  5. Buy white garbage bags only: black garbage bags can’t be recycled due to their dark pigment
  6. Stop using plastic bags: Ask for paper bags or better yet, bring your own cloth bags
  7. Stop buying bottled water: Invest in a water filter and save hundreds of dollars on water a year
  8. Recycle aluminum and glass bottles
  9. Buy local produce
  10. Buy organic produce
  11. Buy produce that are in season since these produce travel a shorter distance to get to you
  12. Eat your fruit and vegetables raw: This helps save energy
  13. Don’t rinse your dishes before placing them in the dishwasher
  14. Only pre-heat the oven when baking
  15. Invest in hand-powered kitchen appliances such as hand juicers, manual can openers, etc.
  16. Shop at your local farmer’s market to cut down on the amount of food packaging you buy
  17. Unplug all kitchen appliances when they are not being used
  18. Re-use zip lock bags
  19. Fix leaky faucets
  20. Observe meatless Mondays: Eating no meat, even once a week, helps the environment
  21. Buy meat free of antibiotics and growth hormones
  22. Get creative with leftover food: Don’t waste food!
  23. Replace disposable products with reusable ones as much as possible (Ex: Use cotton kitchen towels instead of paper towels) Yes! kitchen towels must be washed but when you factor in all of the components of making a paper towel (harvesting the material, processing it, packaging it, shipping it, stocking it at a supermarket, transporting it to and from the store to purchase it, etc.) all for a single use, you find that paper towels are about twice as energy-intensive and create more greenhouse gases than washing cotton kitchen towels.

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint In The Bathroom

  1. Take a shorter shower
  2. Shower with your partner
  3. Turn the water off when brushing your teeth
  4. Place a brick in your toilet tank to reduce the amount of water you use when flushing
  5. Buy recycled toilet paper
  6. Use a sink stopper instead of letting water run while shaving
  7. Install a low-flow shower head to help you conserve water and energy

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint At The Office

  1. Replace your desktop computer with a laptop computer since laptops use 75% less energy
  2. Unplug your answering machine: Use an automated answering service to save energy
  3. Organize your errand trips: Making one trip can help you save gas and time
  4. Turn off your computer at night to help save energy
  5. Work from home as often as possible
  6. Brown-bag your lunch
  7. Print on both sides of paper
  8. Bring your own coffee mug to the office or to Starbucks: We drink hundreds of gallons of coffee in paper or foam cups that fill the landfills

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint When Doing The Laundry

  1. Clean the lint filter in your dryer to make your dryer more energy efficient
  2. Learn ways to green clean your home by making your own, non-toxic laundry detergents
  3. Line-dry your laundry whenever possible
  4. Hand wash your clothes as often as possible
  5. Wash clothes in lukewarm water instead of hot water
  6. Skip the dryer sheets: These sheets are full of harsh chemicals that leak into the water
  7. Do your laundry early in the morning or late at night to save energy during the summer months
  8. Do full loads: This will help you save money and the environment in more than one way
  9. Recycle your wire hangers
  10. Bring your own hangers to the dry cleaners to reduce number of cheap wire hangers used
  11. Say NO! plastic dry cleaning bags
  12. Use green dry cleaners which use no hazardous chemicals and reduce the potential for water and soil contamination

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint In Your Outdoor Spaces

  1. Don’t install a pool in your new home: Pools are a modern-day environmental disaster
  2. Use Ozone technology in your pool as an alternative to chlorine
  3. Don’t install a lawn in your new home: Lawns are a modern-day environmental disaster
  4. Water your lawn just 3 days a week, early in the morning
  5. Plant a tree or two or three (a fruit tree or decorative tree)
  6. Plant a herb garden
  7. Plant perennial plants and flowers so that you don’t have to plant new plants every year
  8. Use organic soil and fertilizers when gardening: This is a good opportunity to use your compost!
  9. Landscape your home using plants native to your geographic area
  10. Plant an organic garden and grow your own vegetables
  11. Rake leaves manually instead of using a leaf blower
  12. Light your garden and other outdoor spaces with solar lights
  13. Use a pet-safe ice melter in the winter months: This will stop chemicals and salt from leaking into the water and save your pets

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint When Commuting

  1. Walk more often
  2. Maintain your vehicle
  3. Avoid driving during rush hours
  4. Arrange an office car pull
  5. Use public transportation (bus, subway, train) as much as possible
  6. Don’t speed. Driving at the speed level reduces your car’s emissions
  7. Unload unnecessary items from your trunk to help save gas
  8. Make sure the tires on your car are well inflated

Reduce Your Nursery’s Carbon Footprint

  1. Use cloth or environmentally friendly diapers
  2. Buy bedding made with organic cotton, hemp or bamboo
  3. Buy an Eco-friendly crib mattress, filled with wool, which is a natural fire retardant
  4. Buy a baby carrier that is made from 100% certified organic cotton
  5. Avoid painting with VOCs (volatile organic compounds) by using low or no VOC paints
  6. Invest in non-toxic, Eco-friendly crayons for your kids
  7. Invest in Eco-friendly art material for your child’s playroom
  8. Donate your child’s toys
  9. Buy used cribs, changing tables, dressers and rocking chairs that are made of solid wood and coated with nontoxic finishes.

Baby Friendly Health Benefits of Green Cleaning

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint When Vacationing

  1. Buy E-tickets to save paper
  2. Only take direct flights
  3. Vacation at Eco-friendly resorts
  4. Pack light: planes fly more efficiently with light luggage
  5. Rent a hybrid car and a bicycle
  6. Buy local products when on vacation
  7. Choose low-impact recreations depending on your location of travel. For example, when on vacation in the Caribbean choose kayaking, snorkeling, or surfing instead of speed-boating or jet-skiing.

Reduce Your Home’s Carbon Footprint

  1. Turn down your thermostat: Turning your thermostat down just 2-3 degrees can help you save tons of power
  2. Clean your air conditioning filters every month
  3. Install ceiling fans to cut down on your air conditioning costs and energy usage
  4. Stop paper bank statements
  5. Pay your bills Online
  6. Use rechargeable batteries
  7. Turn off the lights when you leave a room
  8. Stop your newspaper and magazine subscriptions: You can read your favorite newspapers and magazines Online
  9. Recycle your old cellphones
  10. Stop your phone book delivery
  11. Insulate your water heater or water tank with an insulation blanket
  12. Instal bamboo floors not hardwood floors: Bamboo takes 6 years to mature. Hardwood takes 50+ years to mature
  13. Use formaldehyde-free glue when installing your bamboo floors

Note: Did you know that reducing your carbon footprint can save you money? How To Save Money By Reducing Your Carbon Footprint

photo courtesy of: Dawn (Willis) Manser

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Paulin Soleyman
Paulin Soleyman is the founder and editor of The Underground Bootcamp. Her goal is to help everyday people live healthier, happier, more fulfilling lives by sharing all that she knows about healthy living, nutrition, and fitness.
Paulin Soleyman

Comments

  1. Urban Paleo Chef says

    This is a great list! I use white vinegar to disinfect my kitchen too – I love how effective it is, and never have to worry that it will be damaging to the environment!
    And I love that you advocate for taking a shower with your partner – I definitely need to enjoy that more often!!!

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