how to be eco friendly and eco how tos
Creative Commons License photo credit: Satoru Kikuchi

There are lots of books and websites out there that tell you what you shouldn’t be doing. But if we’re going to help as many people as possible to be more eco friendly then we need to try and be more positive. Rather than long lists of what you shouldn’t be doing, we need to start creating lists of what people should be doing. How they can make a positive impact on the environment rather than how to be less of a burden on the planet.

But when it comes to how to be eco friendly there’s a further problem besides the negative tone that many books portray. We all know we should drive less, insulate our homes better and stop wasting water but beyond that it can be difficult to decipher which options are more eco friendly than others.

We need actionable, step-by-step guidance based on actual facts so we can be certain we’re making the right choices because, after all, learning how to be eco friendly is a bit like going on a diet. We’re going to have to put some effort in to get the results we’re after which means we need to be sure we’re on the right track otherwise, like the dieter that quits after a few weeks having lost no weight at all, we’ll get despondent about our lack of results.

Fortunately the problem is how to be eco friendly isn’t as complex as you might think and there are hundreds of things you can do to make your lifestyle more sustainable without you needing to live in a yurt, give away your car and live on raw vegetables for the rest of your life. Indeed, when done right, we believe one of the major keys of how to be eco friendly is to be able to help the planet without inconveniencing yourself too much. As they say, the most successful diet is the one you don’t even realize you’re on.

So prepare to dive into a constantly-updated world of actionable tips and strategies that will help you to become more eco friendly without having to give up your home comforts or your modern-day lifestyle.

Ways To Be Eco Friendly

Whilst there are dozens of quick, simple and painless ways to be eco friendly – many of which are described in detail on this site – if you wanted a “quick start” guide of common-sense rules to apply to everyday situations then you could do a lot worse than consider these four golden rules which can be used to guide your every decision if you want to learn how to be more eco friendly…

Use Less

We live in a world of limited resources. It’s estimated that if everyone on the planet lived in the same way that we do in the Western world we’d need three and a half planets to support us rather than the one that we have.

Fossil fuels, water, food, wood, wild areas are all in limited supply and need to be conserved as much as possible so one of the key ways to be eco friendly is to reduce your consumption wherever possible. Use less of these resources and you’ll be helping to conserve them for future generations. This means don’t use more water than you need. Protect wild areas. Use public transport to save on fuel. Use renewable energy rather than fossil fuels wherever possible and try to reduce your consumer spending habits.

Waste Less

Whilst using less is an essential step when it comes to how to be eco friendly all of us, no matter how hard we try, will use up some resources. So the flipside of this is to waste as little as possible. That is – make every resource you use go as far as possible. Fix dripping taps and pipes so the water isn’t wasted. You may need the help of a professional plumber to look for hidden leaks. Conserve rain water. Try to buy second-hand goods and either give away or recycle unwanted items so they don’t go to landfill. Find ways to mend and fix your belongings rather than throwing it away and buying a whole new bike, toaster, TV or whatever.

Educate Yourself

Being green takes some effort. It doesn’t come naturally for most people thanks to the lifestyle we all expect these days. Visiting websites, joining discussion forums, supporting environmental charities and getting green living books out of your local library are all ways to educate yourself about ways to be more eco friendly. Try to look for the strategies that you can fit into your own life to make becoming environmentally-friendly as pain-free as possible and to allow you to make smarter, more informed decisions in the future about your lifestyle.

Think More

As you go about your everyday life try to be more conscious of the effects of your actions. Use this “ethical compass” to help you make decisions on all the day-to-day stuff such as buying sustainable fish for your dinner, switching your electricity supply to a renewable energy company, not buying products with non-recyclable packaging and so on. By becoming more aware of the world around you, the problems it faces and the options available to you to limit that impact in your own small way you’ll go a long way to becoming more eco friendly.

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