Do you have any New Year’s resolutions? 2018 has arrived, and many of us have already begun setting our list of goals for the New Year.
48 years ago, Americans made a resolution to start a modern-day green movement. This movement led to the Clean Air Act of 1970. The goal continues to be to strive to protect public health and take care of our environment’s air quality.
Add new goals inspired by the Clean Air Act to your New Year resolutions and create a pattern of sustainable living throughout 2018. An easy way to start is to develop an action plan for a sustainable lifestyle and keep it where you will see it often to remind yourself of your goal. Here are a few simple resolutions to help you start your year off green.
Resolution 1: Reduce Waste
Americans produce about 254 million tons of trash every year. 34 percent of that trash gets recycled. The number of recycled material continues to grow as more people engage in air quality issues. Recycling reduces the amount of new materials being produced and therefore reduces production emissions from factories.
Incorporating new ways to eliminate waste into your daily routine will help keep our air and environment clean. Instead of buying plastic water bottles, keep a reusable, filtered pitcher in your home or carry a water bottle you can refill throughout the day. Use reusable bags when grocery shopping.
Another simple idea is to opt out of junk mail. Reduce the amount of paper going to waste by preventing junk mail from coming to your mailbox and you won’t have to worry about receiving unwanted information. Learn how to opt-out of junk mail here.
Resolution 2: Educate yourself
Many do not take the time or make an effort to be more sustainable because they simply do not have an understanding of the importance of air quality. If you find yourself lacking information about air quality, read up on the subject. Purchase books (choose e-books if possible) or visit airnorthtexas.org to learn how air quality impacts your life and the environment. Become familiar with sustainability and once you’ve learned more about the power of your own actions and influence, you can educate others, too. Here are a few books on ways to live a sustainable life.
Resolution 3: Reduce Energy Use
Non-renewable energy burns fossil fuels that are emitted into the air causing air pollution. Reducing your energy use throughout the day limits impurities from non-renewable energy. One technique many people use to reduce air pollution is simply turning off and unplugging items when they’re not needed, but there are multiple ways to save energy. Start by purchasing energy efficient items. LED light bulbs use 75 percent less energy and last 25 times longer than other light options. Other energy efficient items include power strips, water heaters, kitchen appliances, and more. If you want to be more advanced in supporting air quality, invest in a small renewable energy source such as a solar or wind electricity system.
All of these resolutions are simple ways to start your year off right by being sustainable and bettering our air quality environment. Here’s to a New Year with new and improved habits!