How Can I Be More Eco-Friendly in My Apartment?
It’s never too late to go green, regardless of where you live. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Florida uses 40 percent more electricity than other parts of the nation. More than a quarter of all energy consumption is from air conditioning, which is a must have for keeping your apartment cool. By implementing one or more of our tips for sustainable apartment living, you can be eco friendly with small changes to your daily routine.
Despite the fact that the United States makes up a mere 5 percent of the world’s population, it is estimated that we use nearly 25 percent of the world’s energy. Do your part to lower our percentage by relying less on your apartment’s energy resources. Turn the lights off when you leave a room, unplug unused electrical devices, switch to cold water only when you are doing laundry, keep your doors and windows closed to avoid letting in the warm or cool air and turn down the temperature on your hot water heater or ask your maintenance team to do it for you. You don’t have to make all of these changes at once or even most of them, but one or two small steps over time can yield big energy savings.
While fresh water is still widely considered a somewhat renewable resource, our usage is outpacing its natural replenishment at a fairly alarming rate. Groundwater is decreasing, which means what we’re taking out of the earth isn’t necessarily going back in. Save water by turning off the faucet when you’re brushing your teeth, limit your shower time, turn off the hose and/or hand wash and dry your dishes. With all of our technology, we still haven’t figured out a way to live without water, so it’s wise to be more thoughtful in your usage.
It’s easy to get wrapped up in our get-it-now culture. Most of us tend to want what we want when we want it, but for every piece of clothing, every frozen meal and every decorative item you bring into your apartment, energy was used to get it there. Each individual item utilizes energy during manufacturing and shipment and, every item made requires materials and some sort of natural resource. Simplify your life by really analyzing your purchase decisions. Ask yourself if you really need that new couch or those new sunglasses. By curbing your consumption, you are well on your way to sustainable apartment living.
When online retailers offer free 2-day shipping, it’s hard to want to get off the couch to go run those errands, but every time you purchase an item online, a truck will need to bring it to you and possibly across longer distances, most certainly releasing more carbon emissions than your vehicle would if you were to purchase your items locally. It’s best to keep your shopping local whenever possible. While it’s romantic to think we can all bicycle everywhere we go, the idea is simply unrealistic for most people. However, shopping in your local vicinity can decrease your carbon footprint, while saving you valuable time and considerable gas money.
Reuse & Recycle
For any person who is looking to be eco friendly, the best tip of all is to reuse and recycle. Any time you consider discarding an item that you already have, consider if it can be put to good use in some other way. Item really can’t be reused? Rather than simply discarding your unused items as trash, consider recycling it. According to a recent study by the EPA, the US discarded over 262 million tons of solid waste in 2012. Recycling will help to reduce that number, and if everybody recycled just half of their recyclable trash, we’d be making big strides to becoming a more earth friendly country. For those of you in Brevard County, Keep Brevard Beautiful offers great tips on where you can drop off recyclable items. Hillsborough County’s website also offers a guide on what can and cannot be recycled.
Embrace your new green lifestyle, even if it’s by implementing one small step at a time. To learn a bit more about how you can be eco friendly and enjoy sustainable apartment living, contact us today!