Today, we all want to live “greener,” by protecting the environment. At the same time, we also want to be economical with our resources, saving rather than spending. The good news is that living “greener” can mean protecting the environment while also being cost-conscious.
Here are a few ways to go green:
- Shop and Eat Local: There is probably no better way to go green than to visit your local Chestnut Hill farmers’ market at the Fareway, or other local Philadelphia famers’ markets. But aren’t farmers’ markets more expensive, you might wonder. While their produce and other products may cost more than what you will find at your local supermarket, keep these other factors in mind: farmers’ market food will stay fresher longer, is healthier for you (since it is less likely to be doused with preservatives and agricultural chemicals), and is not genetically modified. Also, if buying produce in season, it is likely that you can get a pretty good deal.
Other things to keep in mind: buying local means helping our farmers keep their land green for agricultural purposes and avoids paying for the carbon emissions of trucks and the other transportation necessary to get non-local food into the supermarket.
- Reuse and Recycle: We are conscious to recycle our paper, plastic, and glass products, which helps avoid the creation of more landfills. But how many of us consciously try to reuse bags, tinfoil, and plastic wrap? Instead of using such items just once, try to use them again. This can provide an important savings to you and the environment. Plastic bags have multiple uses as garbage bags, grocery carriers, and wet clothing and towel transporters (so keep them handy for the summer). And, don’t forget to recycle plastic bags if you can!
- Eat Lots of Vegetables: Eating vegetables has multiple benefits. In addition to their many health benefits for your body, consuming more vegetables and less other “stuff” is likely to help keep down your weight (which is great for your closet and all those clothes you either want to continue to fit into or used to fit into—another benefit for the environment!). Also, consuming more vegetables, especially local vegetables, helps our local farmers.
- Cut Out the Fast and Processed Foods: This is an obvious one, but worth repeating. Cutting back on fast food saves waistlines and saves the environment. A lot of energy is used in producing fast and processed foods, both the foods themselves and the packaging and containers that they require. No need to say much about all the unhealthy things that go into these foods like preservatives, grease, and salt. So, scaling back on the prepackaged snacks and fast food meals will benefit your health and the environment.