Even if Earth Hour was done last weekend, it doesn’t mean that we are done with doing our part to help the environment (yes, even after an hour with the lights off). To really make a difference in saving the world, we have to be conscious of it every day. Thankfully, doing our part doesn’t mean a radical lifestyle change (but yes, go ahead and start composting or try the 30-day zero-waste challenge if you want to), baby steps first! Just as a little bit of trash from each person in the world amounts to a mountain of garbage, a little bit of change in our lifestyle to lessen trash would go a long way too.
Here are some earth-friendly lifestyle tweaks that you can do right now to help Mother Earth:
Use metal/reusable straws
If you really need to use straws for your drinks, metal straws are easily available now (even Serenitea sells milk tea-size metals straws).
Plastic straws are not recyclable nor biodegradable so they stick around forever! The straw you used to drink that frappuccino last year could still be floating around in the Pacific right now. Did you know that of the marine debris found in the seas and oceans, straws and coffee stirrers make up 3% of the recovered trash? They are especially dangerous to turtles and sea birds who accidentally swallow them.
Stop buying bottled water and bring your own water bottle!
Staying hydrated is important, especially when you live in a tropical country like the Philippines. This is why it is better to bring your own water botter instead of having to buy bottled water every time you need to drink. It not only saves you money, you’re also helping lessen plastic waste. Having an insulated bottle that can keep your drink cold is a great investment!
Bring your own coffee tumblers
I’m sorry to break it to you, but paper coffee cups are not recyclable. So, if you’re going to be hanging out at a coffee shop, better opt to use their mugs instead. But if you’re in a rush and ordering coffee to go, we suggest you bring your own coffee tumbler. There are lots of them out there, all shapes, colors, sizes, and prices.
Bring your own bags for groceries
Ok, so your bags don’t have to be as nice as this one. But we’re pretty sure that you have a few of these canvas totes lying around or even those paper bags from boutiques that have accumulated under your bed (I know I have A LOT of them). You can use them when you go to the groceries or even just in convenience stores. A lot of towns and cities have done a good job banning plastic bags in stores now, you can take it a bit further by reusing your old shopping bags.
Use menstrual cups instead of disposable feminine napkins
Yes, menstrual cups may seem scary. “You put them up where?!” may come to mind when trying to explain how they work. But they do work and they work well to help you get through the time of the monthly crimson intruder. They are a lot of benefits from using a menstrual cup (you can exercise and swim without worry, for example), but one of the biggest things that they do is keep hundreds of non-biodegradable toxic plastic napkin wastes out of our landfills AND save you a lot of money while you’re at it.
There are many more ways to help out the environment. Just look around you. If you see trash on the street, pick it up. Don’t throw trash out of the car window. Turn the lights and electrical appliances off if you’re not using them. Don’t leave the tap running while you’re brushing your teeth. There are many commonsensical and easy ways to be more friendly to the planet that we share, let us know if you have some more!