6 Personal sustainability goals to set for Earth Day 2021
No matter how old we get, many of us still see the first day of the school year as the chance for a fresh start.
Others stick to January 1st as the motivation to set new goals and work on themselves.
But in 2021, we’re encouraging people to start afresh on the 22nd April.
Sustainability is a huge trend, and a global responsibility. By definition, sustainability means to have as little impact on the Earth as possible, by using fewer resources and replacing those we do use. Many businesses have taken on the approach to plant trees in replacement for all the paper used in their offices. But what can we do on a personal level?
To prepare for Earth Day, we’re highlighting a variety of goals and resolutions you can set yourself to do your bit in the fight for a more sustainable world. Even small changes can make a huge difference, so even if you find yourself only managing to take on one or two goals, you can still influence others and make the world a better place.
- Grow what you can
Depending on where you live, you’ll be able to grow certain fruit, vegetables or herbs. There are plenty of ways to grow your own food – even if you live in an apartment.
And why does growing vegetables make you more sustainable? Well, not only are you more self-sufficient, you’ll also be investing in less processed goods and all the packaging that comes with it. Plastics and other packaging materials used in manufacturing food cause huge amounts of pollution and landfill around the world – which ultimately impacts the environment, our wildlife and sea life.
- And save what you can
Whether it’s freezing leftovers, or taking them for lunch to work, this is a small change that can make a big difference. You may also have seen doomsday preppers with bunkers filled with preserved and canned foods, but they actually have the right idea. Preserving food can help you save money and become more self-sufficient. If you’re interested, it can take a while to perfect the skill, but there are plenty of tools, kits and advice available to help you get started.
- Reduce your energy consumption
The modern world is dependent on fossil fuels and energy consumption. It’s estimated by the year 2060, we will run out of fossil fuels. If we don’t act now, and reduce our energy consumption or look for renewable options, we won’t be able to live the lives we’re so used to.
To reduce your energy consumption, take a look at renewable energy forms available in your area, or apply for a smart meter to help you keep tabs of the power you’re using.
Be more aware of things you leave on or on standby; research analogue hobbies instead of relying on the TV, and enjoy the comfort of a snuggly jumper rather than reaching to turn the heating on.
These simple changes can reduce your energy consumption dramatically – benefitting both the environment, and your bank balance. If you need more persuading, take a look at this post about how much you can save yourself by making small changes to your energy consumption.
- Harvest rainwater
If you have outdoor space, adding a water butt to your drain pipe can provide you with clean water for boiling or flushing toilets. By harvesting rain water, you can reduce your carbon footprint and as the world’s demand on this free resource increases, the infrastructure will only become more expensive and detrimental to the environment. According to StormSaver, harvested rainwater in the UK can provide almost half of a family’s water needs, so it would be silly not to take advantage.
- Change your shower habits
Harvesting rain water might feel too difficult, but there are plenty of other ways to make a difference when it comes to water usage. An 8-minute shower filled with daydreaming, singing, shaving and more uses 17.2 gallons of water. That’s huge when you consider a family of four can be fed for a day on food produced with just 6.8 gallons.
But it’s not just using less water that can help when it comes to your shower habits. All Things Hair found that 91% of people look for natural ingredients when choosing hair products, which is a great step in the right direction.
Make sure to research the best options for your particular hair type, and how you can find everything you need in natural ingredients. Then, next time you head to the shops, be part of the 74% of people who choose natural products over non-natural. You’ll thank us later.
- Shop thrifty
While maintaining the things you have already is encouraged, if you do need to buy new things like clothing, try thrift shops. There are plenty of high-quality options in pre-owned stores or online marketplaces which can help you feel fresh and stylish, without impacting the Earth.
For fast fashion, 70 million barrels of oil is used to create Polyester each year. And while the items can be made quickly, they take around 200 years to decompose. Meaning all those cute outfits you can get for a few dollars will ultimately end in landfill if we don’t make serious changes.
So, although these changes may seem trivial, they can make a huge difference to the challenge we face as mankind. It’s vital we protect the world around us for generations to come, and without setting ourselves goals, how can we expect others to do the same?
The battle for sustainability is something we are all responsible for. Set yourself a few goals and get started on Earth Day. Encourage your friends and family to do the same, and you won’t just help save the world, you’ll also save yourself hundreds of dollars a year.