What I’m about to say is nothing new or revolutionary. However, it is agonizingly easy to do, and definitely worthwhile. It won’t require you to do anything beyond your means, either physically or monetarily. And I guarantee you that if every single person did at least one or two of the below mentioned tasks, they will make the world a better place. Exceptionally cliche but very, very true.
Here are 5 super easy ways to go green. And I say super easy because they are just that. Super and Easy.
How groundbreaking! Yes I know, it’s nothing new, but here’s how it gets easy. Place 3 bins in the kitchen. Mark them as Paper, Plastic and leave the third one unmarked. Paper items go into the paper bin, plastic (such as water bottles) into the plastic bin, and everything else in the unmarked one. If you have space, you can put one for cans and metal products. Though I think paper and plastic packaging are the most common ones in each household.
When they’re full, take them to your nearest recycling facility (we have big recycling bins near the co-op in our neighborhood).
TURN IT OFF
Turn off all electric outlets when you’re not using them. Most people don’t know that electric sockets still use up energy even if nothing is plugged into them. They need to be shut down directly so as not to consume energy. For example, if you’re not using your phone charger, unplug it from the socket, and turn the socket off. Even if you unplug your phone, the charger is still pulling energy from the electric outlet.
Say no to hard copy. Don’t print unnecessary documents unless they are extremely mandatory! Read or view important files on your computer screen, and whenever possible, send them virtually. I once interned at a big corporate office that had no printers! Everything was read and sent as soft copy. There was almost no printing done whatsoever!
Instead of you and your friends heading to the same destination in separate cars, why not carpool to said location? If you live near each other, and are heading in the same direction, have a friend pick you up. Less cars equal less fuel. And bonus: less traffic!
PLANT A TREE
Or buy one. You won’t believe how easy this is, yet how big an impact it has on the environment. If you have a lawn or garden, then no doubt you already have a tree. Well, plant another one and help counteract deforestation. For those of you who don’t, there are plenty of other options for terraces, patios or even balconies. You can buy potted trees that grow to manageable heights and won’t take over your balcony!
Imagine if a neighborhood of 500 houses planted one tree each. That’s 500 trees! And if your district has 100 neighborhoods, imagine how many trees in total! (50,000 if you’re wondering). That’s literally a forest right there.
- Alya N. Al-Othman
Image: Waleed Alhusseinan