Arbor Day is observed on the last Friday in April and people traditionally plant trees to celebrate. However, this is also a great opportunity to renew your commitment to “going green” in other areas of your life. Arbor Day is meant to remind us that we need to take care of the earth. You can do your part by making eco-conscious decisions at home.
There are many advantages to going green. Biodegradable items prevent pollution, especially in developing countries. Environmentally friendly products do not exhaust limited resources, promising a clean world for our children. Today, we will explore ways you can make your home green and eco-friendly.
1. Choose Energy Efficient Appliances
The next time you shop for new appliances, look for energy efficient models that use less electricity. Not all forms of electricity are sustainably produced. In recent years, solar and wind energy have become more accessible. But, most of us still get our electricity from fossil fuels, which are not renewable resources.
Until we can produce electricity sustainably, minimizing our use is the best thing we can do. Appliances marked with an EnergyStar logo have been recognized by the EPA as using less electricity than their counterparts, so look for that logo to know you’re saving energy.
2. Swap Out Light Bulbs
Another way to save energy is to switch your incandescent light bulbs to LED. These last longer, producing less waste. LED lights also use less electricity. Though a light bulb seems insignificant, little changes add up. Think about how many light bulbs are in your home. Saving energy by replacing each of them will save you money and reduce waste. This is an easy swap that makes a big difference.
3. Opt for Reusable Products
Single-use items create a lot of waste. Whenever possible, choose reusable products to promote sustainability. Here are just a few ideas:
- Purchase metal water bottles and thermoses for your drinks instead of plastic water bottles and disposable cups.
- Avoid using plastic utensils unless you are hosting large groups. Though the convenience of disposable products is sometimes necessary, choose reusable ones whenever possible.
- Buy tote bags to use at the grocery store. A couple of plastic bags might seem like no big deal, but multiply them by every trip to the store and you will see how quickly they add up.
4. Avoid Volatile Organic Compounds
Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are bad for the environment and our health. Unfortunately, many household items contain VOCs, including paints, cosmetics, and cleaning products. However, products made with organic ingredients emit fewer VOCs. Additionally, air purifiers can remove some of these compounds. You can have your home professionally tested for VOCs or buy VOC monitors to ensure your indoor air is safe.
5. Use Sustainably Sourced Materials
Many of the everyday materials in our home are not environmentally friendly, such as stone and plastic. Start being intentional about choosing renewable resources like plant-based items. For example, opt for wood furniture rather than plastic. When selecting accessories and decor for your home, choose pieces that come from recycled or renewable resources.
This Arbor Day, consider how you can make a difference for the environment. Striving for a green, eco-friendly home will ultimately benefit your family, your community, and the world.
The Hardwood Lumber Company is locally owned and is committed to preserving the environment through sustainable logging practices. Browse our selection of environmentally-friendly wooden home accessories!