More and more attention is paid to a sustainable life. However, how to start making your life more sustainable? Before starting you should know what it actually is.
Sustainability is the word. If we talk about sustainability, you have to think about a broad concept. It goes from separating waste, to choose building materials and energy saving solutions for your house and garden. It’s about limiting the ecological footprint your leave on earth. A sustainable life is about smart investments in your home, which generates a good returning for your environment. But a sustainable life is also about awareness and behavior.
Do you want to know how to make your home and interior more sustainable? We have the best practical tips for you! Tips for at home, like investing in insolation, but also, tips when traveling. Like, comparing sustainable travel using FlyGRN.
The 7 best tips for a sustainable living
1. Invest in insolation
A home with a good insolation consumes less energy. Do you have an old house? Than you have many possibilities for improvements. Remember: insulation comes first, then green energy.
A well insulated house consumes less energy, as the heat stays in. This also means a more comfortable house to be in.
Insulating the roof is very important. It prevents the heath from rising and escaping. And replacing single windows for efficient double glazed windows will also help tremendously. Of course this all is an investment; investments that will be compensated by a lower energy bill each month.
But there are also improvements that cost less money. Like hanging curtains in cold rooms and keeping the house free from drafts. The heating is generally one of the most high-energy consuming factors in the house. If you want to receive lower energy bills, perhaps there are possibilities for subsidies to make your house more sustainable. Ask you local governmental agency for the possibilities.
2. Be efficient and smart with using energy
Energy savers are a good choice to start with. Make a tour around your house and make a list. Write down all the little things you can change.
Maybe you have light bulbs that can be replaced for energy saving lamps or LED lamps. Place drafts strips along the doors. Close connecting doors and heat only rooms where you are. Place time clocks in your house, so lighting doesn’t consume more than necessary. And of course when choosing a new car, a new house, kitchen or computer, give energy efficiency priority. It is best to always choose an A++ energy label on new devices.
3. Choose fair trade products
It is a trend that is increasingly gaining importance. Because more and more people want products which are made with raw products and produced with the least possible use of energy. So people like to invest in products that help our climate and are good for mother nature.
A possibility is to give fair trade products as gifts to friends and family. Explain why you choose this product. On the other hand: only throw things away if you cannot sell them or reuse them. Giving products a new live is part of living a sustainable life.
4. A green house and a green garden
Did you ever notice that plants in your house are very good for the climate in your home? They filter the air, so you can live healthier. So go and buy some beautiful plants that purify the air and are non-toxic.
The same goes for your garden. Many gardens nowadays are paved and therefore completely closed. It’s easy for cleaning and maintenance, but awfully bad for drainage and nature, like birds and insects. So open up your garden and plant some beautiful flowers, plants or shrubs. Make your garden a natural area. It gives your garden immediately more color and a natural feeling. Rain feeds your plants, so put them in a space where they have the benefits of a rainy weather.
And if we talk about trees, they function as a natural thermostat. Because in winter, the sun will warm your house by shining through the bare branches. In summer the leaves keep your house cool during warm days. A tree in your garden is always a good idea.
Don’t forget our insects. A garden with insects is a healthy, sustainable garden. Plant trees to welcome bees, flies and birds, and enjoy the view and bird songs during spring and summer.
5. Sustainable furniture
Are you looking for new furniture? Then it is good to think about choosing materials that are ecological and non-toxic. Furniture made of bamboo or corks are responsible materials, as is fair trade wood. Or if you are interested in something more fashionable, then bio-plastic could be a possibility. It is a material that has been made from extracted natural products, such as corn and potatoes. It sounds incredible, doesn’t it?
But instead of buying all new furniture, there are also other solutions. Maybe you can paint some of the furniture you already have to give it a new life. Or you go to a secondhand store for unique, antique or vintage pieces. This way you give furniture a second live, instead of consuming more resources.
6. Water efficiency
There is a lot of water all over the world, but only 1% can be used as drinking water. That is so little in contrast to the large number of people who live on earth. So fresh, safe and pure drinking water is scarce. And if the population grows as if it has the last 50 years, water will become even scarcer. So it is very necessary that new desalination en purification techniques are applied to change the scarcity of water in the future.
What you can do is prevent that water flows unnecessarily. For example when brushing your teeth. And never ever flush medication or tampons down the toilet, as this contaminates clean drinking water. Or when you need to wash your car it’s better to go to a car wash as here polluted water is collected and purified. If you clean your car outside your house, all water and the car shampoo will be absorbed through the earth. Of course this is very polluting.
7. Separate your waste
Yes, we produce waste and that cannot be prevented. Although you can limit the amount of waste your produce. And you can help with recycling your waste. Therefore, look very carefully at your own waste. Which items can you reuse? And otherwise you ensure proper separation of waste. This way it can be processed efficiently and the professional recycling process will be used optimally.
Examples of waste that can easily be separated are: plastic, residual waste, batteries, paper, chemical waste, cooking oil, organic waste and glass. You can read more tips for living sustainable here.
OCTOBER Bonus: Install the new Chrome or Firefox extension TreeClicks. That’s a free sustainability related Chrome extension that plants trees for free when you shop at one of the more than 50.000 shops like Amazon, Target, etc. Prices remain the same.
2023 Bonus Tip: Another tips is to try to look for refurbished products with this comparison tool.