New year, new you (or at least until the end of January). Keeping a resolution when it means altering your existing routine can feel uncomfortable. But making a positive impact on the planet doesn’t mean changing the world. It’s small changes that band together to create lasting impact. In 2023, we challenge you to embrace discomfort in the name of making a positive impact on your environment. Without further ado, here’s our round-up of attainable and sustainable resolutions you can make this coming year.
- Start a compost bin.
- Compost bins are a great way to limit methane emissions caused by the improper breakdown of organic materials. At-home compost is accessible, affordable, and even saves you money by producing free, high-quality soil.
- Start a garden.
- So, you have high-quality soil – now what? Try a garden! Whether you’re living in urban sprawl or have acres of land, gardening is actually more possible than you might have imagined. Try a countertop garden for herbs if you have limited space. You can use your compost to build healthier soil, prevent soil erosion, conserve water, and improve plant growth in your garden and yard.
- Homegrown vegetables also mean nutrient-rich, safer food. Bonus: If you can’t consume all your produce yourself, you can take the excess to the local farmers market or donate to a food bank.
- Limit eating out + takeout.
- Eating at home allows you full autonomy over the food you’re consuming and how you’re consuming it. Eating at home means controlling your portion size to reduce food waste, using reusable dinnerware, and sourcing your ingredients more sustainably (like from your garden).
- Get a reusable water bottle.
- We’re into everything reusable, but water bottles are a total must. Studies show that nearly 1.5 billion plastic water bottles are bought and thrown away per day. Get a bottle that showcases your personal style with so many designs, colors, and shapes to choose from. Here’s our current favorite.
- Thrift first where able.
- If upping your style game is also on your resolution list, thrifting will be your best friend. It’s easy to find gently used, nice clothing for a fraction of the price of retail. This also allows you to purchase from trending brands that may have been inaccessible otherwise. With fast fashion becoming a major environmental and ethical concern, thrifting is a great way to practice slow, mindful consumption.
- Personal style is so important, but before purchasing, consider the lifespan of a product. Op for pieces you feel can live in your closet for years, not ones that are briefly trending like many prints.
- Change the way you travel.
- Advocate for sustainability.
- How comfortable do you feel talking about environmentalism with your friends? Helping the green movement grow is one of the single biggest ways to produce lasting change. If you do nothing else, consider having an open and honest conversation with your friends and family about joining your initiative to consume more consciously.
- Worried that the sustainable movement is out of your budget? Volunteering is another option that costs nothing to be a part of. If you live near the coast, there are dozens of organizations committed to ocean clean-ups. Get down and dirty and plant a few trees for Arbor Day Foundation. Volunteer year-round with the National Parks Service to protect public lands. If you don’t feel like there are good options near you – try starting your own efforts. This could mean organizing a weekly or monthly neighborhood trash pickup, or if you’d like, contributing to an organization monetarily.
Making environmentalism a priority in 2023 is essential to the health of our planet. There are so many free, accessible options to reduce waste and practice sustainability. How do you choose to give back and give green?