Sustainability is more important now than it ever has been, which is why finding ways to be more environmentally friendly in your own home is essential. You can’t change the entire world in one day, but you can ensure that you’re utilizing eco-friendly materials and reducing your own environmental footprint.
Thankfully, finding sustainable living materials has never been easier. If you want to reduce your carbon footprint, it’s easy to get started!
- Repurpose & Reuse
Decorating a new space doesn’t require buying all new materials. In fact, purchasing secondhand goods or repurposing furniture you already have is not only better for the environment, it’s often easier on your wallet. This reduces your carbon footprint because it doesn’t require new energy or materials to create, thereby reducing the pollution released into the environment every time a new product is made.
When choosing furniture and decor, don’t be afraid to get a little quirky with your space. Mix and match your favorite pieces to create a design all your own. While it may look a little funky at first, this trendy design aesthetic brings a sense of playfulness to your home that’s unlike what you’ll find in anyone else’s space.
- Incorporate Native Plants & Reduce Lawn Space
If you’re concerned with sustainability and conservation, then you know the importance of incorporating native plants into your home environment. While urbanization has destroyed many functioning ecosystems, adding native plants to your garden can help to restore ecological life.
Determine which plants are native to your specific area, and incorporate them into every open space you can find. Take full advantage of your front yard, back yard, and/or side yard to create and ecological oasis around your home. By aligning with the environment you live in, you can have meaningful effects on animal and insect populations around your home.
While a flowing green lawn may look beautiful, it’s an environmental nightmare. Lawns require tons of water to maintain their lush color. In addition, most lawn maintenance requires harmful pesticides and herbicides, and using a mower releases destructive greenhouse gases. To combat those problems, try to cut down on the lawn space in your outdoor environment. Instead, opt for a maintenance-friendly rock garden with plants that don’t require quite as much water, such as succulents.
- Choose Natural Materials
If you want to create a truly sustainable living space, the materials you use in your home have to be of the utmost importance. Instead of adding to your carbon footprint with synthetics that are often manufactured, search for natural decor and eco-friendly materials that can reduce environmental pollutant levels. Reutilizing materials from nature is a great way to skip out on harmful chemicals used in the creation of synthetic products. However, you should also find materials that are durable enough to withstand the normal wear and tear, particularly for your outdoor environment.
Organic cotton, hemp, and wool should be your ultimate choices in fabric. Stone tiles and wood furnishings incorporate natural elements into your space while still aligning with the latest design trends. By opting for natural materials, you bring your appreciation for the environment into your everyday living while simultaneously creating a space that represents the best of sustainable decorating.
- Find Energy-Saving Options
When you’re buying new items for your home, remember to keep energy consumption in mind. You can start small by being selective with the lighting you choose, and being sure to turn the lights off when you’re not using them. Of course, natural sunlight is the best, but when winter nights get longer, LED lights are a much better option than traditional bulbs. In addition, make sure the appliances you look at are energy-efficient, and consider power-friendly smart technology. If you have the opportunity, consider investing in solar panels, which will not only help reduce the collective dependence on fossil fuel, but also create jobs in clean energy.
There is an ever-growing amount of ways to go green in your home and it doesn’t have to be a huge overhaul to start. One step at a time can take you a long way, even if it seems small right now. Don’t underestimate what you can accomplish by making these changes and more.
Author Bio: Katie Tejada is a writer, editor, and former HR professional. She enjoys writing about events, travel, decorating trends, and innovations for the home, but also covers developments in HR, business communication, recruiting, and CRM solutions.