We are living in an unprecedented time.
We are spending more time at our houses than we ever have before.
With work being done from home or temporarily on hold; recreation centres, libraries, entertainment venues being closed and limited access to dine-in restaurants, we are at our homes for every meal, cleaning more often and spending more time in our yards.
If there was ever a time to become more mindful of our waste and conscious of the Earth and our impact on it, it’s now.
The definition of sustainability is something that “meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”
This may sound a bit “flighty” to some but if this definition doesn’t hit home for you, maybe the fact that living more sustainably can save you a ton of money will.
What you eat, to where you shop, what you throw away or reuse all have an impact on how sustainable your living is.
Once we understand what sustainability mean, we can start implementing small daily changes that will positively impact our world.
According to the City of Airdrie website, “Contributing to a sustainable community means creating lasting environmental, economic and community vitality.”
Here are eight recommendations from the City for ways you can make your life more sustainable:
- Use your buying power.
- Support environmentally responsible businesses and products.
- Shop locally.
- Live healthy. Stay active.
- Look for ways to be active in everything you do.
- Transportation – walking, biking, rollerblading, skateboarding
- In your social time – running, skiing, tobogganing, dancing, hiking with friends, coaching or playing sports
- In your time at home – shovelling snow, cleaning the house, playing with your family, gardening.
- Reduce waste bound for the landfill.
- Purchase products with less packaging and try reusable shopping bags and containers, instead of disposable ones.
- Recycle as much as possible through Airdrie’s curbside blue cart program and recycling depot.
- Use the curbside organics program to turn organic waste into compost and reduce landfill disposal costs.
- Replace older, water-guzzling fixtures with new, water-saving models.
- Water-efficient fixtures are designed to use less water while maintaining the same level of performance as older fixtures. Replacing high-flow toilets with new water-saving models (three to six litres per flush) can save a four-person home over 81,000L of water per year and up to $200 per year on their utility bill.
- Catch the rainwater from your roof.
- Water use increases substantially during the summer months and watering your yard can account for up to 30 per cent of your annual water bill.
- Using a rain barrel to collect rain flowing from your eavestrough can help by providing a free source of soft, non-chlorinated water that your plants will appreciate.
- Try alternative transportation options.
- Use the bus, a carpool, your bike or your own two feet to get to work or school, rather than driving in your car alone.
- Commuting using alternative modes, even a couple times a month, can help improve our air quality, save you money on fuel costs and reduce traffic congestion.
- Tree Donation
- If you are interested in donatingor transplanting a tree onto City land, contact the City of Airdrie Parks department.
- Install energy saving products.
- Replacing your five most-used standard bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) saves approximately $30 a year. CFLs use up to 75 per cent less energy than conventional bulbs and are built to last for at least five years.
No matter what small steps you take to become more sustainable in your home, it will have a positive impact on your life, your community and ultimately the world.