GOING GREEN ON A BUDGET – 40 ways to be eco-friendly without busting the bank

22 Jan 2014

Being eco-friendly is a wonderful thing; it can simply be done anywhere and at anytime. Not to mention it is more likely to save you money than cause you further expense.

With “green” living going mainstream more people are more concerned with the impact they are having on the environment. I have long considered myself a “good citizen” but I too fall prey to the nonchalant attitude of it will fix itself, but a pity it is, we all know that this is not true.  Here are my 40 tips to going green or greener in some cases:

  1. Start reading the news online and cancel your daily subscription (that’s if you are not doing this already.
  2. Finally go and empty the cupboard in your car! Extra weight burns fuel, costing you more money in the long run and more further to the environment.
  3. Visit your local recycling centre and pick up an old piece of furniture instead of buying new; a quick sand, varnish and new door nob and you will be signing up for grand designs.
  4. Turn off the lights when leaving a room.
  5. Reuse sheets and towels.
  6. Use public transport.
  7. Don’t heat an empty house! If you are away on a trip turn your thermostat down so it’s still warming up the house for maintenance reasons but not wasting extra energy.
  8. Turn your computer off at the end of every day, sleep mode still means it’s sucking up energy
  9. Wondered why your refrigerator is making all that noise and burning more energy than it used to? They need love and care just like everything else. Clean out the coils by vacuuming out the dust and wipe with a damp cloth.
  10. Share the load, start carpooling to school and work.
  11. Shower for 2 minutes less each day.
  12. Don’t not leave the water tap running when brushing your teeth
  13. Turn off the lights when leaving a room.
  14. Control your portions – trust me you don’t need the third helping.
  15. Buy rechargeable batteries.
  16. Make something new out of something old – old pillowcases can be used to make cushion linings.
  17. Give to charity – donate your old clothes.
  18. Ride your bike to work, not only are you saving the environment you are burning off those donuts you had at break time.
  19. Use e-tickets when going to a concert or taking a flight. Skip the printed tickets and opt for the digital ones you can have on your phone or mobile device.
  20. At dinner use cloth napkins instead of paper ones.
  21. Drop your read magazines over to your neighbours or even better to the local doctors surgery.
  22. Make your own beauty products – try a cleansing facemask made from avocado, olive oil and lemon juice.
  23. Make your own cleaning products – lemon juice and warm water is sensational.
  24. Use a glass instead of a plastic cup when having a drink.
  25. Buy fewer packaged products
  26. Plan your daily schedule so you are out doing your errands at the same time, to avoid having to go back into town wasting fuel and energy.
  27. Use Facebook to organise your party – forget paper invitations and opt for the online version
  28. Pick up litter
  29. Switch to an eco-friendly washing detergent.
  30. Keep your freezer full — it runs more efficiently than an empty one.
  31. If something breaks, mend it, do not just go out and buy a new one.
  32. Take the stairs instead of the elevator (great for the environment and your health).
  33. Use cloth diapers instead of disposables, I know this is daunting at first, but once you get the hang of this, it will save you a mini fortune and benefit the environment to no end.
  34. Buy in bulk, this will lower your fuel cost and save you pennies at the checkout.
  35. Swap your light bulbs for energy saving bulbs, they may be more expensive but they will last double if not triple the time plus saves lots of energy and makes your bank balance look a lot nicer.
  36. Put a sweater on before you reach for the on button on the boiler.
  37. Pay your bills online (and opt for paperless billing) to reduce paper usage and postage costs.
  38. Skip the plastic water bottle for glass one that you can re-use
  39. Unplug and turn off – that’s your TV, kitchen appliances, phones and computer.
  40. Going to the ball? Why not suck up the courage and ask your girlfriend to borrow that beautiful dress she wore at the Christmas party? I’m sure she won’t mind; just don’t spill red wine down the front. And if you do make sure it’s organic!

There are hundreds of ways to help the environment a little bit at a time. Do not feel overwhelmed with the list you see before you, just picking up a new healthy habit a week at a time is a darn sight better then ignoring it completely. We are human beings and set in our ways, we may take a little nudge in the right direction sometimes to get us moving. I hope you’ve enjoyed this post, please feel free to leave a comment or let us know if you would like any post on matters that are itching your feet 🙂

Written by: Eshere Ward

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