As the New Year rolls in, many people are setting ambitious New Year’s resolutions like lose weight, eat healthier, travel more, or make more money. However, most people end up giving up on them within a few weeks because they take too much time or are too difficult. Rather than pick up a typical “New Year, New Me” resolution, why not work on a “New Year, New Planet” resolution?
Everyone goes for the typical resolutions usually focused on their body or careers, but what if you focused on impacting the environment around you? Well, in this article, we’re going to show you a list of 20 zero waste resolutions for 2020 that won’t cause you to deprive yourself of tasty food or make you break your body as the gym would.
Instead, we’ll give you a list of easy resolutions you can pick up that you can feel good about, knowing you’re making a positive impact on the environment.
Let’s Dive Into 20 Zero Waste Resolutions for 2020!:
1- Use reusable water bottles:
In the year 2050, the amount of plastic in our oceans will outweigh fish, according to Jersey Island Holidays. For every plastic bottle you buy, it adds to the massive amount of plastic waste that is building up by the millions in pounds every year. Plastic bottles take 450 years to decompose which means it will continue growing every year unless we pick an alternative.
Instead of plastic bottles, use a reusable water bottle made from metal. Not only will you be saving the environment, but it will also save you a ton of money in the long run.
2. Use a Reusable Coffee Mug
Rather than buying a Starbucks coffee cup every day that gets thrown in the trash, use your own reusable coffee mug. Just like the reusable water bottle alternative above, this one will save the environment and help you save money. Those $5 coffees can add up to hundreds every month. Instead, use a metal reusable mug. You’ll also be able to keep your coffee hotter for longer.
3. Use Reusable Food Containers
Most of our waste as humans revolves around food and drink. If you can tackle these areas, you’ll be making the biggest difference. Rather than buying take out lunch at work and throwing out the plastic containers, use a reusable food container like Tupperware. Bringing your own lunch will also make sure you’re healthier too (helping with your eat healthy resolutions).
4. Use Reusable Bags & Tote Bags
Single-use plastic bags were just outlawed in Thailand at the start of 2020. Other western countries aren’t far behind from adopting bans on single-use plastic bags. Instead of coming to the store empty-handed, bring a reusable tote bag or another bag to carry your groceries. Some places will charge you for plastic bags nowadays so it could save you money in the long run.
5. Use a Shampoo Bar
This is an easy one you can implement this year. Rather than buying over a dozen shampoo bottles this year that will end up in the trash, pick up a shampoo bar. It’s an easy way to control the amount of lather you want, plus, they’re generally cheaper to buy as well.
6. Use Reusable Cutlery
Plastic cutlery is unnecessary even if you’re ordering take out. If you have the option when ordering food to say no to cutlery, then say no. Use your own reusable cutlery at home. Plus, those plastic cutlery sets are so hard to use (and they often end up breaking which is annoying).
7. Eat Less Meat
I know, this might be a tough one for many of you. However, did you know that the meat industry produces a massive amount of waste each year? According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, livestock farming contributes to 18% of greenhouse gas emissions produced by humans worldwide. If you can’t skip meat altogether, try only eating it once a week. Instead, load up on plant-based proteins like hemp seeds, quinoa, peanut butter, lentils, broccoli, and beans.
8. Buy Reused Clothes
The clothing industry is one of the most wasteful industries in the world. It’s very harmful to the environment and produces a ton of waste every year. Rather than buying a new outfit once or twice a month, choose to reuse. It doesn’t have to be a dull experience. Go thrift shopping. Hunting for a hidden gem at the thrift store can be an awesome date idea.
9. Turn Off Electricity When You Leave the Room
Electrical waste is one of the most common forms of waste at home. How often do we leave lights on in the home even when we’re not in the room? Turn the lights off when you’re not using them, along with any other electronics. You’ll save a ton of energy and money from your lower electrical bill.
10. Walk More & Use Public Transportation
Driving a car around or using frequent taxis can cause a ton of pollution, harming the environment. Instead of hopping in your car next time you have to get groceries or head to work, use public transportation. If you live close enough to home, walk or bike. Not only will you be helping the environment, but you’ll be getting healthier without even trying.
11. Buy Local When Possible
Be conscious of where your food is coming from when you’re shopping. Transported foods lead to massive waste. The fact is, the longer the food has to travel, the more likely it is to go to waste. Choosing local foods will also save your body from nasty toxins and preservatives.
12. Use Reusable Hand Towel
13. Buy From Farmer’s Markets
Farmer’s markets will help you avoid foods that are shipped across the world or country that can lead to heavy waste. Your farmer’s markets will also be much healthier, and better for your bodies since the food is in-season.
14. Say No To Single-Use
Whenever you’re shopping, skip the single-use bags. Make sure to refuse them as most retailers will automatically put your items in the bag. If you’re buying a few items, bring a tote.
15. Buy LED Light-bulbs
LED light-bulbs are much more efficient, saving a ton of energy compared to fluorescent bulbs. You’ll be saving energy and saving money on your electrical bill with these bulbs.
16. Turn Off Your Devices At Night
If you’re heading to bed, do you really need to have your desktop computer, laptop, Wi-Fi, and other devices on? By shutting these devices off at night, you’ll save a ton of energy throughout the year. Plus, you’ll be saving yourself from nasty electromagnetic field radiation they produce.
17. Fix Before Buying New
If your door handle is loose, rather than buying a new one, try fixing it first. If your dresser paint is chipping, don’t just buy a new one. Paint it. You’ll be saving the environment big time.
18. Use Non-Toxic & DIY Cleaning Products
Most cleaning products at home are terrible for the environment. We’ve all heard horror stories of fish or other animals becoming poisoned because just a little too much went down the drain. Instead, use natural cleaning products like lemon, baking soda, or vinegar. They’re much better, they waste less plastic, and they are much more affordable.
19. Use a Bamboo Toothbrush
If you always think of the mantra, “Never plastic”, you’ll be able to find a variety of household items that are easily replaceable as you go about your daily routine. Bamboo toothbrushes are one way you can ditch plastic and pick a plant-based alternative that’s much safer for the environment.
20. Inspire Others To Do the Same
Choosing zero waste doesn’t have to be hard. It certainly isn’t as hard as most of the common resolutions like losing 20 pounds or starting a constricting diet. The best part is, you don’t need to do all 20 of these tips at once. Start with one at a time. You’ll be amazed at how easy most of these really are. Most of these don’t even require you to go out of your way to implement them. When you’re at the store, just be environment-conscious and choose a green alternative to
your typical choice. When you’re at home, switch off the lights when you’re not using them and use reusable bags and containers when you head out.
You’ll start to notice others commenting on your choices and that’s your chance to shine. You can inspire your friends and family to start implementing zero waste habits this year by showing them just how easy it is.
The easiest way to inspire others to live environmentally-conscious is by showing them how fun it can be. Grab a few tote bags and invite a friend to a thrift store hunt! Don’t forget your reusable coffee mug. Afterward, take a walk with them to your local farmer’s market to pick up some fresh ingredients to make a tasty lunch.
So what are you waiting for? Take these 20 zero waste resolutions for 2020 and have fun. You’ll be glad you did, come 2021.
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Thank you, thank you, thank you, we could not do it without you!