These top 10 ways to protect the environment at home take very little time to do. It’s just a matter of making a commitment to doing something good for the planet and sticking to that plan.
I call this “my environmental to do list.”
Earth Day happens in April and lots of people talk about how to protect our environment for that one day.
For me, thinking of ways to help our environment is not something I talk about one day of the year, but something that is on my mind most of the time.
There are so many ways to help the environment at home.
From taking the time to turn off lights, or setting the thermostat a few degrees lower to growing your own vegetables, read on to find out how to protect the environment in our daily lives.
These 10 ways to protect our environment at home are simple to do and can make a big difference.
My environmental to do list contains suggestions that are easy to implement, actually save money in most cases, and go a long ways towards protecting our environment.
I’ve also included a free graphic that you can print out and display in an obvious place. I have mine on the back of my medicine cabinet door.
It reminds me of what we can do at home to help the environment. You can print it out here by using your browser print function, or use the print button the in the printable card at the bottom of the post.
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Conserve energy and save money
We all love to stay warm in the winter and cool in the summer, but adjusting the setting by just a few degrees during the hot time of the year (or turning it off and opening the windows) can make a huge difference.
Doing the same thing in winter helps, too. For the few months in the spring when I don’t use A/C, our electricity bill is $100 a MONTH lower.
That is a huge savings in money and energy. So adjust the temperature. You’ll be amazed at how quickly you get used to a different setting.
Conserve water to protect the environment
There are loads of ways to save on water usage. When you brush your teeth, only turn the water on when you need to rinse.
Are you boiling potatoes for dinner? Don’t throw the water down the drain! Use it to water your plants.
Use rain barrels to catch water from the gutters and downspout. This can save a lot on your water bills and makes watering your vegetable garden a cost saver too.
These are just a few ways to save water that can make a big difference in protecting our environment.
Conserving water is one of the most important things you can do make a difference and help our planet at the same time.
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Use products that are environmentally favorable
Products that are free of dyes, flavors, preservatives and fragrances and are never tested on animals will make you feel great about saving the environment.
When you are looking for ways to protect the environment at home, take the time to do some research about environmentally favorable products.
Some brands to consider that are eco-friendly:
- Beyond Meat – Their beyond burgers generate 90 percent less greenhouse gas emissions, and require 46 percent less energy than normal beef burgers.
- Clipper Tea – Their teabags are sealed with a non-GM bio-material made from plant cellulose, known as bio-plastic.
- Patagonia – the company belongs to both the Sustainable Apparel Coalition and 1% For The Planet.
- Tom’s of Maine – The company is dedicated to creating a safe, sustainable product on which families can depend.
- Lush Cosmetics – None of their products are tested on animals; all ingredients must be vegetarian and derived from fruits, vegetables or safe synthetics.
- Green Toys – Green Toys are an ecologically conscious mother’s dream. Their toys are safely made for your baby, and they are made with 100% recycled materials.
- Native Shoes – This eco-friendly company reduces waste by collecting old pairs of Native Shoes to give them new life as playground flooring and insulation. They also sell a Plant Shoe. It’s 100% biodegradable and made of all natural materials which can be composted after use.
Environmentally friendly garden products
While gardening is eco-friendly in itself, many products are not. If reducing your carbon footprint is important to you, try some of these products.
- Go Greens – They make a 100% biodegradable, all purpose garden glove that is reusable and washable. It is made from bamboo fibers, a plant use for a variety of green products.
- Biodegradable peat pots – Instead of using plastic pots to start your seeds and seedlings, consider using peat pellets or peat pots. They break down when planted in soil and are totally eco-friendly.
- Certified organic seeds – Certified organic seeds are more sustainable, since they have come from plants that have been grown without the use of synthetic chemicals and in a way that shows a concern for the environment and the health of the planet.
- Bamboo garden markers – Anyone who uses plastic markers for plants in their garden knows that they don’t break down over time. Instead, use bamboo plant markers. They are all natural, ecofriendly and won’t pollute the soil.
- Jute twine – Choose jute (or hemp) twine made from natural fibers and avoid nylon and synthetic materials. Natural twine will biodegrade while synthetic twines will not.
- Terra cotta garden pots – Most retail shops sell plants in plastic pots to save on cost. These are not environmentally friendly. Transfer the plants to terra cotta pots. Not only will you help the environment, but you may find that your plants actually grow better!
Use filtered water to conserve plastic use
My daughter bought me a Brita filtered water pitcher for Christmas last year. It is one of the best Christmas presents I have ever gotten.
I keep the pitcher full all the time and it makes the water taste fabulous. This clean water encourages me to drink it often which helps my heath.
Using the water pitcher allows me to really save on the purchase of bottled water, which also saves on plastics use. This makes it a win-win all around!
Recycle food waste with a compost pile to save our earth
Food wastes takes up so much space in our landfills, but it can easily be put to wonderful use if you have a garden. I started a compost pile last summer and just kept adding food and yard waste to it.
The soil under the top layer makes a fabulous compost that adds nutrients to your garden. I consider it black gold for my veggie garden.
I add a scoop of compost with every hole that I dig for my plants. No chemical fertilizers for me, and using this compost really adds to the soil and encourages earthworms.
Not only does using the compost help your vegetable garden, it means that you won’t be throwing so much into your garbage bins each week.
Find out about all sorts of things that you can compost that you may not have thought of.
Ways to save the environment – plant vegetables
Planting your own vegetables is fun to do, and is very satisfying when the garden produces and gives you peace of mind that you are eating things that you have grown.
When I plant vegetables, I try to stay way from GMO seeds. I use heirloom seeds, my own compost and can rest easy, knowing that I am feeding my family the best home grown food.
Organically growing your own food is sustainable and nourishes your soil when you are using safe and natural fertilizers and products.
Recycle and reuse to help save the environment at home
There are a so many things that you can do with normal household items instead of throwing them into the trash. If you are looking for a fun kids craft project, make some egg carton caterpillars.
Instead of purchasing new pots for your succulents, look around your house to find items that can be used for creative succulent planters.
You will end up with a plant pot and de-clutter your closets at the same time – a Marie Kondo win!.
Instead of throwing that old newspaper away, use it to easily make into starting plant pots for vegetables.
When they have grown enough, you can plant the whole thing, newspaper and all right into the garden!
How to protect the environment at home – pick up litter
On your next walk with your kids, set a great example for them. Take along a plastic bag from the grocery store and pick up any litter that you see along your walk.
The kids will grow up learning to think of ways to save the environment, and you will help to keep the environment cleaner too.
While we are on the topic of those plastic grocery bags, find other uses for them! I’ve written a whole post about 48 uses for plastic grocery store bags. Be sure to check it out for ideas.
Make homemade desserts
Instead of using boxed dessert mixes, make your own. It really does not take that much longer.
You will know that you are saving money and skipping the chemicals that seem to make it into the boxed mixes.
Plus, homemade just tastes better! Look at these chocolate chip cookies! You can’t get these from a box!
Use reusable shopping bags
We talked about recycling plastic grocery bags as a way to save the environment. Now, let’s consider reusable shopping bags instead.
Some stores now charge a fee if you use plastic bags and some stores give a small discount if you use a reusable bag. This is their way of encouraging you to be more environmentally conscious.
Whatever the reason, reusable bags are a great product when you are looking for ways to save the environment.
I have a set of about 10 reusable cloth shopping bags that I take with me when I go shopping.
They hold a LOT of food and have lasted me for almost 10 years.
Now it’s your turn. How can we protect the environment?
Can you think of other ways to help protect our environment at home? What do you do to protect our planet all year long, and not JUST when Earth Day rolls around?
Tell us your what is on your environmental to-do list in the comments below.
Admin note: This post first appeared on the blog in April of 2016. I have updated the post to add more ideas, new photos, a printable and a video for you to enjoy.
Pin these tips for ways to protect the environment at home.
Would you like a reminder of this environmental to do list? Just pin this image to one of your household tips boards on Pinterest so that you can easily find it later.
- Heavy card stock or glossy photo paper
- desk jet printer
- Load the glossy photo paper or heavy cardstock into your printer.
- Print and display is a visible space to remind you to protect the environment.
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