Choose the Earth to be your Valentine

By Katie Murray, Green Team

In January, you made the normal resolutions for yourself, but have you thought about resolutions that show some love to the Earth? What better time to do so than during the season of love?

Below are those same resolutions we know and love, but this time with an environmental twist!

“Eat Healthier” AND Smarter

  • Cook from scratch: Think about how many pre-packaged meals come wrapped in plastic, and the amount of energy used to mass-produce these meals. When you’re at the store, buy enough food to cook at once and feed yourself for the week!
  • Grow your own veggies: This is another energy saver as your produce won’t need to be shipped, lessening your carbon footprint. Not to mention, you’ll be very proud when you pluck your first ripe tomato!
  • Eat less meat: The amount of water needed to produce a hamburger can be up to 30x more than that of a veggie-filled salad, 660 gallons of water per burger to be exact! Cutting down meat consumption is another way to help conserve water.

“Get More Exercise”

  • Try walking or biking: Walking or biking as a form of transportation to work or school will not only have you feeling great, but will lessen your carbon footprint. If walking or biking isn’t an option for you, consider using public transportation or carpooling instead of driving your individual car.
  • Get outside: It costs nothing to get out there and walk around your neighborhood or favorite park. By going on walks you are improving your health and gaining an apperception for nature. Bring your kids on your walk and help inspire the next generation of nature-lovers. This time of year in Florida is particularly exciting as the White pelicans have migrated here for the winter. See if you can spot them on your next walk!

 “Save Money”

  • Watch your energy consumption: Luckily for us, many times energy savings = money savings. While the price of energy efficient technologies (such as refrigerators, dishwashers, etc.) may be larger up-front, the savings long-term makes them a no-brainer. You might also consider getting an energy assessment done on your house to see if there are things you can do to lessen your energy consumption (new weather stripping, insulate your roof or ceiling, shade your windows, etc.)
  • Do laundry/dishes before 4 p.m. or after 7 p.m.: This won’t cut down the amount of energy used, but may cut down on the amount of money you spend. Many energy companies charge more during “peak hours” between 4-7 p.m.
  • Use a dishwasher: You are likely saving money by washing your dishes in a dishwasher rather than washing them by hand. This seems counterintuitive, as they require energy to run, but the benefits of using less water (which requires less energy to heat) outweigh those of washing by hand.

We hope these tips inspire you to live a healthy lifestyle that will not only benefit you, but also our planet.