Modern problems need modern solutions. How to help the environment this Earth Day.
Have you seen the positive environmental posts circling around social media lately? These posts highlight changes in the environment since the start of the pandemic. These posts are showing swans and dolphins returning to Venice, elephants getting drunk on corn wine, and new fish in polluted waters. The list goes on from there. These posts are going viral and have a positive message. The message is that by staying home, we are saving the environment. Unfortunately, National Geographic has confirmed that these posts are fake. We are going to say this as nicely as possible: as much as we love seeing positive news, fake news helps no one. This fake news actually has an adverse effect. These messages provide a false sense of security that mother nature will fix itself. We can save the environment, but we must be diligent about it. We need to go green, not just on Earth day, but all year long. We need to continue being green conscious.
We do not mean to be negative. The images of the animals are enjoyable, but the fake news that comes with it is not helpful. The good news is air pollution is taking a temporary halt right now. It will not be a permanent change unless we keep it a permanent change. We will have to take steps to ensure that this change becomes permanent. There are still things that we can do to help the Earth.
Today’s article is all about the things that you can do now. The stay at home order has impacted what we are able to do. We may not be able to use reusable bags, reusable cups at Starbucks, or even recycle in some parts of the country, but there is still A LOT of other things that we can do. Here are 5 ways that you can go green this week, next week, and all year round.
Unplug electronics when not in use
We are human. Unplugging every electronic can be a lot to ask for. Nothing is worse than having to reset the time each time you unplug a device with a clock. We are not suggesting that you unplug your alarm clock or microwave every day. These items are difficult to set back up each time they are unplugged. We do not recommend unplugging your Wi-Fi router or cable box, either. They can be a pain to get set back up. So, stay sane and just unplug the things you can. Lamps, coffee makers, and TVs not connected to cable are easy to unplug. There are other devices, too.
When you are using a laptop or your phone, you can unplug the charger from the wall. Speaking of your phone, you can save electricity by staying off social media. Spending hours on social media can be a real drain on your battery.
Buy reusable items
When the pandemic started, I saw people going to the store to stock up on water bottles. It was frightening. A water filter would have been less expensive! I did not want to think about the financial or environmental cost. A water filter uses the water that comes from your sink. Once you buy a water filter you only have to purchase the filters. I have been able to use the same filter for 2-3 months before. It depends on how much water you drink. Along with water, you can buy Mio or other small types of flavor. It can help replace buying bottled Gatorade or other drinks. It saves money and results in less trash.
You can use cloth napkins instead of paper napkins. White cloth napkins might show a lot of dirt and stains. A darker color napkin will help hide ugly stains. You can also buy dryer balls instead of fabric softener or dryer sheets. I bought dryer balls two years ago, and they have been worth every penny.
Use your windows
Turn off your thermostat and lights around your home. During the day, especially on weekends, I open all the blinds and curtains. I just let the sun do what it does naturally. I love using natural light to light my house. We can get about seven good hours of sunlight a day before needing to turn on lights. I also use the windows as a substitute for my thermostat. House too warm? Change into shorts when you get home and open the windows to let the breeze in. House too cold? You can put on a jacket or open the blinds to let sunlight warm your room. We are not suggesting that you let your house go 15° off being comfortable. Allowing for a 5° buffer is not as much of a hassle. You can save about 3% of your bill for every degree. 5° might be about a 15% decrease! Talk about saving money and going green.
Upcycle furniture and home items
Are you ordering more pickup or delivery food? Those to-go boxes might come in handy. Some types of containers can be reused as food Tupperware. It really depends on what substances were used to produce it. Some containers start to deteriorate on their own and can harm your food if used longer than expected. Other types of materials cannot be heated in a microwave. For a full list of what you can and cannot use for food containers, Taste of Home has a lovely guide. Some of the containers that are not considered food-safe can be washed and reused for other things. Need storage for your office or kids’ toys? These small boxes might be the perfect size!
Besides food containers, there are other items you can repurpose. We have another blog that talks about upcycling furniture. Check it out, and you might find an affordable life-long hobby. Some types of upcycled furniture use items that would have been thrown out. Upcycling is a great way to save the environment, save your wallet, and update your house.
Choose Net Pay Advance
We are already green. You can see it in our logo and our mascot. Green is our color!
Okay, that was a joke. But seriously, we do help decrease the carbon footprint. We are entirely online. With your online account, you can go paperless. We do not have printed applications either. That is online too. It is not just paper that we cut back on. We also do not have multiple locations all over the state. That means we have less lights to keep on and less buildings to maintain. Talk about saving energy! You can go green for the planet and still have green in your wallet by loaning with Net Pay Advance.
There are things we can do every day to cut back on our carbon footprint. We can still work on helping the environment. There are a lot of changes happening right now, but we are still capable of doing so much for the environment! We only have one world. We should be green regardless of what day, week, or month it is. You can do these initiatives all year round! Have other advice on how to go green? Comment below and let us know how you are going green now.