1. Don’t Toss Your Plastic Into That Lone Trash Can.
I know that it’s frustrating that garbage and recycling bins aren’t always married, but don’t let that stop you from doing the right thing. If you have to go for that plastic water bottle (don’t do it, don’t do it!), challenge yourself to avoid resignation and hang on to it until you get home.
The other big perpetrator: to-go coffee lids. Unlike straws, you can recycle them. Take the 2 seconds (you’re only giving up 0.67% of a 5 minute Instagram browse) to pop it off and make sure it doesn’t end up in in the ocean. Even better: avoid the to-go-coffee cups all together and get a portable thermos (most shops will give you a little discount for bringing it too).
2. Say No To Plastic Straws.
Did you know we consume enough straws in the U.S. on a daily basis to fill over 140 school buses? That’s enough to wrap around the Earth about 2.5 times. We can’t recycle them (they’re too small), which means they end up in our water or landfills, and they stay there for a very long time.
Take the pledge to stop using plastic straws, and kindly let businesses know why you’re refusing. Don’t worry, if you’re a straw lover. You can still slurp away with a glass or steel straw (I’d recommend glass because you can tell if it’s clean).
3. Don’t Leave That Water Running!
In the U.S. most of us are fortunate enough to have an endless supply of clean water, but it’s led to some wasteful habits.
If you listen to your dentist and brush your teeth for 2 minutes, you could waste over 3 gallons of water if you leave the faucet on. It’s easy to wet your brush and walk away, but it’s still really easy to turn the water off before you start multi-tasking.
Same thing goes for washing the dishes: do you need to let the water run while you scrub? How about all those times you start the shower to let it warm up, but walk away for a few minutes to do something else? Give your water a little love and pay attention to those moments when you could stand to save a few gallons here and there – it adds up.