20 New Year’s Resolutions to Save The Planet And Your Health
As 2021 gets closer, weight-loss targets, financial goals, and personal-growth resolutions are being set in earnest. 2020 robbed many of us of the opportunity to accomplish the things we set out to do, and some of us are looking to achieve these overdue goals in the coming year.
But if 2020 has taught us anything of importance, it’s that our everyday actions have a severe impact on the planet and every living being on it. The lower rates of pollution, carbon emission, and waste generation in 2020 can be attributed to the COVID-19 virus keeping us indoors most of the time. This clearly outlines the fact that there is a direct correlation between our activities and the health of the planet.
If cutting out or limiting certain activities can benefit the planet, surely there’s a way to move through life sustainably without upsetting the natural order of things?
So this year, aside from the changes we seek for our health and personal growth, let’s make a few New Year resolutions that are good for the environment as well.
- Get Reusable Grocery Bags
This year, let’s agree to take our own reusable shopping bags to the grocery store instead of getting a plastic bag every time we go shopping. It’ll save the Earth from having to deal with hundreds of non-biodegradable, toxic bags every year.
- Cook Your Meals
Cooking your own food is a lot healthier for both the environment and your body. Processed food travels from factories, to farms, to stores, and finally onto your table, accumulating toxins and requiring tons of packaging along the way.
- Eat Organic
Eating organic helps you stay away from all the chemicals and hormones present in conventional food today.
But, of equal importance, is the fact that industry-farmed veggies and grains are harmful to the soil, air, and water.
- Go Plant-Based
If you haven’t already, consider going plant-based, or at least cutting down on the amount of meat and dairy you consume.
The animal industry is responsible for a host of issues, including deforestation, ocean dead zones, soil pollution, and ozone depletion. You can help reduce all of this and get rid of saturated fats and cholesterol from your diet once and for all.
- Avoid Fast Fashion
To meet the demands of the ever-evolving fast fashion industry, farmers in underdeveloped countries are forced to ravage their fertile soil to grow material for clothes.
Aside from the obvious environmental damage, fast fashion also leads to large-scale accumulation of waste as these low-quality clothes are used and thrown frequently, in favour of the next trend.
- Get A Steel Bottle
Aside from cutting down on plastic waste from regular water bottles, you can drink clear water, free from the toxins that often seep into it from the plastic.
- Dry Clothes Naturally
A recent study found that dryers use nearly 20% of all domestic energy in the U.S., and in 2007 this translated to almost 55 million tons of carbon emissions. While drying clothes naturally may take longer, it’s a lot safer for the environment.
- Shop Locally
Shop locally instead of buying exported products from big stores, as this will drastically cut down carbon emissions from vehicles that transport your products from around the world.
And when you’re buying veggies, fruits, and other green foods, the produce will be a lot fresher if obtained locally.
- Use Public Transport
By switching to public transport or biking wherever you go, you can help actively contribute to reducing carbon emissions.
- Start Composting
Food waste left in landfills generates tons of methane every year, a greenhouse gas more potent than carbon-dioxide. By composting regularly, you can actually turn that food waste into something useful.
- Wear Less Synthetic Stuff
Even if you’ve given up fast fashion, there’s still a way to go before your clothing can be deemed sustainable. Try, as much as possible, to stick to clothes made from organic materials so they can easily return to the Earth.
- Try a Shopping Fast
Shopping can be an addiction, and just like any other addictive behaviour, we receive a surge of dopamine every time we swipe our cards and pick up something new.
Well, this year, you can try and rewire your brain with healthier habits while cutting back on the number of products you consume.
- Switch to Menstrual Cups
Aside from the enormous quantities of pads and tampons you can safely eliminate, menstrual cups are also much better for your body and free from harmful chemicals or toxins.
- Use Non-Toxic Kitchen Cleaners
Swapping conventional kitchen cleaners with organic, or at least non-toxic ones, will make your kitchen space a lot safer and keep synthetic materials and liquids out of the soil.
- Buy Second Hand
Buying second hand clothes, furniture, and even electronic devices ensures that you reduce the use of raw materials and cut back on the waste generated during manufacture.
- Volunteer For A Cause
Volunteering for an environmental cause, such as saving the sea turtles or clearing up plastic on the beach, will put you in direct contact with some of the harmful activities happening here on Earth. This will help you stay more mindful of your lifestyle and its impact, helping to keep it in check.
- Organise A Clothing Swap
Next time you want new clothes, organise a swap with friends and family where you’re sure to find some nice new pieces that are free from the carbon load of the manufacturing process.
- Read More
Books are an effective way to stay mentally sharp and focused. Of course, it’s best that you get yourself a Kindle to prevent trees from being cut during the production of paperback books. Be sure to read books that talk about the environment and our impact as they can help further your understanding of the way things work.
- Avoid Palm Oil
While going vegan is perhaps one of the most beneficial changes you can make for the environment, many vegan products contain palm oil which is obtained in large quantities by destroying rainforest cover.
- Use Solar Power
Solar-powered phone chargers, lights, and even watches are available now, and switching to these can drastically cut down on energy consumption, while reducing the waste produced in the form of batteries.
Go Green This New Year
While changing to a more sustainable lifestyle can be quite a challenging endeavour, it simply takes some getting used to. It may feel awkward in the beginning, but once it gets comfortable, you can rest easy with the knowledge that you are at least trying to make the world a better place to live in.So in 2021 focus your energies on a more green, sustainable lifestyle, and let’s transform the planet one resolution at a time.