30 Ways You Can Help Protect the Earth
Here at SaltyLama, we are pretty obsessed with Mother Earth - the perfect planet, capable of and willing to give us everything we need. Count us out of the race to Mars, we believe that Earth is a fine place and worth fighting for. In our ongoing effort to protect the Earth, not only are we here to offer the most sustainably-made products, but we’re here to educate our customers on ways they can join the fight
for our home. From the way you treat your dwelling to the way you eat, there are ways for everyone to get involved. Here we have outlined 30 ways you can help
protect the Earth in your home, in your daily consumer habits, in how you eat and how you travel.

In Your Home

 

  1. Install Solar Panels

“But they’re so expensive!” We know. Although the solar panels require a significant upfront investment, the prices have steadily decreased over the years, as new technologies have been discovered. Solar panels take advantage of one of nature’s most powerful and free energy resources: the sun. The 3 key benefits of solar panels are: 1. Year round electricity production 2. Increased market value of your property 3. Reduced carbon footprint. Investing in solar energy can help you play a part in protecting the Earth and can provide a great financial return in the future.

  1. Install Double Glazed Windows

Double glazing is the process whereby two layers of glass are fitted so that a small gap of air is created in between to reduce heat loss and noise. Installing double glazed windows or double glazed doors can add significant value to your property. A building equipped with double glazed windows and doors can lead to a total temperature difference of up to 20 degrees between the inside and outside of the building. This is a great Earth-saving choice for those looking to remodel or looking to increase their property value.

  1. Use an Automatic Thermostat

If you have thermostats installed in your property, do not forget to use them! Not only are they a great time saver for those who live busy lives, they are particularly convenient when you are away from home, as you can plan your temperature settings for up to a week. Most automated thermostats also have an “eco” setting allows you to keep a steady temperature while using little fuel. A super helpful feature for those who work away from home or travel often.

  1. Insulate Your Home

You know that foamy-looking stuff that people spray into their attics? That stuff is magic! Insulation can help stabilize you home’s temperature all year round, protecting it against cold in winter and heat in summer. Insulation is also useful to reduce noise pollution. You can choose to insulate your roof, floors, walls, windows and doors. A well-insulated house is very energy efficient and will need very little additional heating and cooling, potentially saving you a boat-load of money.

  1. Install an Efficient HVAC System that Right-Sized For Your Home

The size and efficiency of your HVAC system determines how well and how quickly your home heats up or cools down. The faster it reaches the desired temperature, the sooner it can turn off and go back to reading its Harry Potter book. We’re kidding. But serious - the consequences of an over-worked AC that runs way too long – a higher power bill and excess energy usage. With an efficient HVAC model, the air flow is superior, allowing quicker and better-regulated temperatures. It also helps to reduce air impurities, so your indoor air is healthier to breathe.

 

  1. Recycle Waste

This one should be second nature, but in case it’s not, recycling is the process of collecting and processing materials that would otherwise be thrown away as trash and turning them into new products. Recycling reduces the amount of waste sent to landfills, conserves natural resources such as timber, water and mineral, and prevents pollution by reducing the need to collect new raw materials. Make use that special blue or green bin and make it a habit of gathering recyclables from around your home.

  1. Full Loads on Cold

If your Grandma is anything like ours, half-loads are a sin, punishable by a Granny scolding. Always wash full loads in cold water. It takes as much energy and water to wash a full load as it does a half load, unless the machine has special sensors or half-load setting options. Studies have shown that there's little difference in wash performance between washing in warm or cold water, especially if you're washing non-whites. If you use a hot or warm wash, choose a cold rinse – it uses less energy. But if you wash in cold water, you'll need to do a hot wash regularly to clean your machine.

  1. Use Eco-Friendly Detergent

Eco-friendly laundry detergents are easier on bodies, gentler on fabrics and are kinder to the environment. This is mainly because they don’t contain harsh chemicals, work better at lower temperatures and come in eco-friendly packaging. Trading in your Tide pods for a more Earth-friendly detergent is an easy way to reduce the footprint of your laundry routine.

 

  1. Don’t Tumble Dry

Dryers use up a lot of electricity, almost more than any other household appliance. Air drying not only saves money, but also the consistency of your clothes. Hanging clothes out to dry also creates a therapeutic routine that most of us could use as the world is in shambles. We recommend investing in a portable drying rack for an Earth saving task that busies your body and sets your mind free to wander.

 

  1. Turn Off Lights You Don’t Need

How many of us turn lights and lamps on in rooms that we rarely ever spend time in? We’re guilty of this. But we’re working to be better. By turning off unneeded lights, you save money and prolong the lifespan of your bulbs, adding to annual cost savings on electric bills and bulb replacements.

  1. Take Quicker Showers

Who doesn’t love a long, hot shower that sets the scene for deep thinking and the making of life decisions? In fact, we came up with the idea for SaltyLama in the shower. Kidding again. Now, we know, it’s glorious. But, taking shorter showers is just one of many ways to reduce water use and conserve our drinking water. It's also an easy way to reduce your water bill. Shorter showers can save you time, energy, and also save up to 350 kilograms of carbon dioxide a year and help cut down your energy bills.

 

 

How You Consume

 

  1. Stop Consuming Things You Don’t Need

A few weeks ago, we shared a blog outlining tips on how to Reduce Consumption & Embrace a Less-is-More Lifestyle, encouraging our customers to be more aware of how, what, and why they consume. Take a look at the article for tips that will save you money, time, and energy, and have a positive impact on our planet.

  1. Don’t Throw Old Clothes Away

You see them every time you open the closet and you cringe: clothes that haven't left their hangers in years, shoes that felt perfect in the store but caused blisters on their first (and last) trip out of the house. But what do you actually do with that mound of clothes you're ready to get rid of? We recommend donating, selling and swapping them instead of filling the landfills with them. There are a ton of great options for this, including Goodwill, eBay, Craigslist and your local thrift and consignment stores.

  1. Recycle Old Appliances

One of the easiest ways to save energy around the house is by purchasing energy-efficient appliances. But be sure to recycle your old ones, because they’re mostly made up of metal. If you are looking to swap your current appliances for more efficient versions, you check with your local recycling experts who can take those appliances and ensure the materials are reused.

  1. Use a Laptop Instead of a Desktop

Laptop computers are often more energy-efficient than desktops for one simple reason: they can run for a long time off battery power. Desktops, on the other hand, are always plugged in. Desktop computers use an average of 60 to 200 watts while laptops use an average of 20 to 50 watts of electricity. If you're purchasing new equipment for your business or considering upgrading your existing equipment, opting for laptops is one way to impact your energy usage every day.

  1. Reuse Your Plastic bags

Plastic shopping bags are everywhere. Some of us have plastic bags full of plastic bags under our kitchen sinks. We collect them from department stores and gas stations, as a way we tote our purchases. So what’s the big deal? The average American goes through six shopping bags per week. With a population of roughly 300 million, that means 1.8 billion bags are used and discarded in America every week. While we recommend using reusable bags, we know that plastic isn’t that easy to get away from. So we recommend reusing plastic bags when you can. Line a small trash can, use it to tote your snack when you’re on the run.

  1. Buy 2nd Hand

We recommend buying 2nd hand when you can for a few reasons. First, used products are less expensive. Buying anything used (except used cars right now) is less expensive. Next, used products don’t require new resources. Lastly, used products don’t generate pollution. When you buy used from your local thrift shop, Craigslist, or get a hand-me-down from a friend, you don’t consume any additional resources.

 

  1. Switch to Paperless Mail

Anyone else have a stack of mail they still need to sift through? Ahhh adult life. But going paperless not only reduces clutter in your home, but also the environmental impact. Electronic statements also offer convenience and enhanced security.

 

  1. Buy a Reusable Water Bottle

Are we still supposed to be drinking a gallon of water a day? If so, switching to reusable water bottles is a great way to do your part to help limit the plastic pollution crisis. The temptation to use a plastic bottle, or to purchase a drink in a plastic container can be hard – they are seductively convenient! But once you know just how much making the switch matters, it might become easier. Stay hydrated, save the Earth.

 

  1. Buy Local Products

Shopping locally reduces the environmental impact of your purchases. When buying from a large national chain store, chances are the products you’re purchasing were produced outside of your local community, oftentimes halfway across the globe. That means those products had to be shipped to reach the store shelves in your community. Such shipping leads to greater fuel consumption and air pollution. But local businesses often buy their supplies from other local businesses, cutting down on shipping and, as a result, benefitting the environment. So buy from the local producer. It helps the business while cutting down on pollution.

  1. Use Rechargeable Batteries

Not only are they more efficient and cheaper, but rechargeable batteries are also better for the environment, and will save you time when you're looking for a new set of AAAs to pop into your toddler's latest toy.

 

How You Eat

 

  1. Buy Seasonal Fruits and Vegetables

Perhaps the biggest tangible benefit of eating seasonally is that you'll save money on food. When you buy what's in season, you buy food that's at the peak of its supply, and costs less to farmers and distribution companies to harvest and get to your grocery store. And chances are, it tastes better!

 

  1. Eat Less Meat

Eating less meat is not going to solve all of the world’s problems. But it can have a positive impact. If you are able to take on just one meatless day per week, you can have a major impact on water consumption and pollution annually. Some might restrict their meat eating to weekends, commit to smaller portions of meat or dairy in a given meal, or simply choose bean over chicken burritos. Whatever you do, it helps the environment and your pocketbook.

  1. Eat Less Packaged Foods

Containers and packaging alone contribute over 23% of the material reaching landfills in the U.S. Reducing the amount of packaged food you consume can save you empty calories, over processed food consumption, money, and also helps reduce the litter that ends up on our beaches and other waterways.

 

  1. Buy Organic Products

Truly sustainable farms do not use chemical pesticides, fertilizers or genetically modified seeds. They do not dispose of vast amounts of untreated manure by spreading it in toxic quantities on cropland. They instead grow a diversity of crops, raise animals primarily on pasture and use techniques such as crop rotation, cover cropping, beneficial insects and other non-synthetic methods of pest control and fertilization. These practices come with a cost, we know, but if you can find it in the budget, we recommend going organic.

 

  1. Grow Some Things at Home

Nowadays, we can’t really tell if our food is, well, food. Food produced on such a massive scale requires synthetic additives and preservatives to stabilize it for the long periods of time between production, distribution, and consumption. This kind of manufactured “nutrition” is not good for anyone. The solution is both obvious and challenging: we need to get back to a direct connection between the production and consumption of our food. We recommend trying your hand at growing some of your own food. This help you control the quality of what you consume, will also save money, and help the environment.

How You Travel

 

  1. Ride Your Bike

With gas prices at an arm and a leg and many of us carrying around a little extra quarantine weight, we at SaltyLama are mashing the pedal. We recommend dusting off that pandemic-purchased bike and taking it for a spin. By not using any gas, bikes don't release harmful emissions that pollute the atmosphere, nor any carbon dioxide that contributes to climate change. Just moderate increases in bicycle use each year could save an estimated 6 to 14 million tons of CO2.

 

  1. Take Trains over Plans

As travel ramps up, flights are recovering to pre-pandemic levels as families take off for spring break and summer holidays. But, if you take the train, then you'll cut carbon dioxide by half compared to the plane. A key reason is that the train may be a big carbon emitter, but it's designed to carry a lot of passengers, so the per capita emissions are a lot lower. So maybe book a train ride for the next medium-distance tip. Many trains now have super comfortable accommodations that include food and beverages. Not to mention the scenic ride.

 

  1. Go Electric

Not that we need to make Mr. Musk any richer, but we do love the idea of going electric - especially given gas prices. Besides lower fuel costs, EVs also serve as a greener alternative to gas. There are also many government backed rebates and credits for those who chose to make their next car a green car.

 

  1. Take Public Transportation

Tired of sitting in traffic during your morning and evening commute? Public transportation may be a great way for you to skip the pile up and help the environment. Public transportation inherently benefits the environment because it reduces the number of people driving single occupancy vehicles. Riding public transit can reduce stress and your footprint.

 

As always, remember that it will take time to build habits, but starting small is still starting, and we commend you for taking that first step. Small changes not only save you money, time, and energy, but they also have major effects on our home - Mother Earth. Now go forth and fight the good fight. We’ll see you out there.

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