Saving the Planet, One Paper Bag at A Time

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Saving the Planet, One Paper Bag at A Time

Karrie Norton, Editor

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One of the hottest topics and trends is going green and living a more waste-free lifestyle. There are many reasons for us to lean more towards being kind to our planet, from protecting the environment & its inhabitants to saving money in our daily lives. Using reusable items can save you a pretty penny and save single-use products from polluting the planet for generations.
A hot button of conversation both politically & otherwise is climate change. Climate change is the change of global and/or regional climate patterns. Scientists using the scientific method have conducted research and collected data that frankly tells a grim tale. NASA scientists also believe that humans are largely to blame saying,“…scientists have shown that humans are extremely likely the dominant cause of today’s climate change… significant evidence of rapidly rising CO2 levels”.
And whether you personally “believe” in climate change, being environmentally friendly hurts no one and can actually benefit you & your wallet.
Some of the ways you can change to a more eco-friendly home are simple and require little to no money, or you could even be doing it without realizing it. The easiest way to start is by only having the lights on in the rooms you’re in, and replacing old bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs), they consume a quarter of the energy that regular (or incandescent) bulbs do and last 10 times longer.
Using less water is just as important as conserving energy, taking shorter showers, turning off the faucet while washing dishes or brushing your teeth instead of letting it run, or even using less hot water helps both water & energy costs. A helpful tool in any house with running water is using faucet aerators, which limits the flow of water thus reducing the amount of water used and are simply installed by screwing it on the tip of your faucet & flow regulating shower heads that also increase the water pressure in your shower while using less water.
Reusable products replacing disposable-one-use products is one of the more obvious and publicized methods of changing our consumption habits. Changing little habits like using a reusable cup & straw or using reusable grocery bags (even just asking for paper is better than the hardly recycled plastic bag!), but recently the market has expanded for reusable and compostable products. Everything from reusable sandwich bags, “plastic” wrap, and produce bags are having a boom in production and popularity.
Home and commercial kitchens are thought to be one of the biggest waste producers (other than industrial plants & other manufacturers but that’s another story on another soapbox) on the planet, especially in the U.S., not only are they producing plastic waste but also, “133 billion pounds and $161 billion worth of food in 2010,” according to the USDA. So everything from changing how much you buy so as to prevent food from rotting before use, using reusable containers, or taking containers & buying in bulk, any step is a good step.

Separating your recyclables is one of the easiest and best first steps to our goal, and if your really looking to make a more sustainable change, look into composting at home or in your city. You should be able to easily read up on composting information with our link provided below. Compost is an organic matter that has decomposed, usually fairly quickly, &
that’s called composting. This recycles various organic materials otherwise regarded as waste & can be used in gardens & in plants as it’s very nutrient dense soil. There are many ways to compost or recycle and with them becoming more mainstream, they are also easily accessible.

Though many argue whether or not the effects of climate change are real, many can agree that a renewable future is a better one and reusing, reducing, and recycling are our best steps to take right now.

Composting in Salt Lake:

https://www.slc.gov/sustainability/local-food/composting/

References:

https://climate.nasa.gov/

https://climate.nasa.gov/news/2743/the-scientific-method-and-climate-change-how-scientists-know/

https://www.hgtv.com/design/decorating/design-101/light-bulbs-know-the-different-types

https://www.usda.gov/oce/foodwaste/faqs.htm

 

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