5 easy ways to be more sustainable in 2021


If you didn’t achieve your lofty sustainability goals in 2020, don’t fret.

The coronavirus pandemic sidetracked virtually everyone’s goals for this past year. And despite the ways that COVID-19 and the environment are connected, environmentalism may not have been at the top of many people’s minds as much as usual over the last nine months.

But a new year is almost upon us. Even as you navigate the unprecedented outbreak into 2021, there are a few easy ways you can go green without taxing your bandwidth.

Here are a few simple steps you can take to be more eco-conscious in the new year.

Reduce your fashion waste

An easy way to improve your green habits is by starting in the closet. The new year is a great time to kick off a no-buy, a predetermined amount of time in which you won’t buy any new articles of clothing. Another great way to offset the impact of fashion on the environment is to mainly buy second-hand clothing, and to donate rather than throw away your gently used items that you never put on.

Be bright about your energy usage

Making a concerted effort to reduce how much electricity you use around the house can really add up. And the great thing is you won’t just be reducing your impact on the earth, but on your wallet as well. Through small actions like hanging your clothes to dry or by turning lights off if you’ll be out of the room longer than 15 minutes, you will be taking basic but essential steps to reduce your carbon footprint.

Give up the gum

Niccii Kugler, founder of lifestyle brand Nash + Banks, says, “Most mainstream chewing gum contains plastic and synthetic rubber, which means every piece of gum ever chewed still exists!” Kugler advises cutting the chewing and turning to alternatives like mints or gums that are plant-based, plastic-free and biodegradable.

Buy sustainable products from eco-friendly companies

A big way to speak up for the environment is with your wallet. There are plenty of companies out there that are committed to being shepherds of the environment, so consider buying green versions of items that you need to buy anyway. Whether you need shoes or cutlery kits, there are products out there that will align with your commitment to the earth, and serve as great conversation starters as well.

Seek new experiences, not things

Whether you’re considering new gifts or are just tempted to do a little retail therapy, consider giving experiences instead of gifts for major holidays in the new year. Taking a class or going to a famous natural destination will create precious memories, and reduce the waste of holiday gifting.

For more ideas on how you can save the planet, visit 1Thing.

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