Many people have an image of going green as expensive. Hybrid cars cost more than regular cars. Solar panels are expensive.
Thank goodness there are more ways than that to go green!
One of the most important steps you can take to go green is to simply consume less. Go shopping less. Reuse and repurpose things as they get older. It can’t be expensive if you aren’t spending money on it, except maybe in time.
Some steps may cost a little more at first, such as making the switch from paper napkins and paper towels to cloth varieties of the same things. On the other hand, these can last for years, so you can save quite a bit in the long run. And that’s what you should ideally be thinking about.
Going green in the things you need to buy can save money too, or at least not cost extra. When it comes to cleaning products, for example, there are more and more green products coming out all the time, and many have similar prices to conventional products.
And for those who don’t mind a very small bit of extra time, products such as vinegar, baking soda and lemon juice can work wonders around the house. They’re also quite affordable and often do as well as conventional products. Sometimes you’ll need to put a little extra elbow grease into your scrubbing, but you can still get the job done.
Either of these solutions can keep toxins out of your home. That means that you may feel better, especially if you or anyone in your family has allergies.
Buying organic food is probably one of the most expensive things that you would do on a regular basis. I won’t argue that organic food is more expensive than conventionally grown, but you can offset this somewhat by growing your own. There’s a cost to getting started with a garden, but there are benefits beyond the fresh produce. You get exercise. You get to teach your children about where food comes from. It can be a lot of fun combined with frustration. There are few things as wonderful as fresh picked produce. The stuff in the grocery stores just cannot compete.
Reusable shopping bags are quite popular now. These don’t have to cost a fortune if you don’t mind having a store logo on them. Many grocery stores sell them for just a dollar each. Sure it’s something you wouldn’t have had to buy otherwise, paper and plastic grocery bags being free, but you’re not spending much and cutting waste way down.
Energy efficient light bulbs may also seem expensive, but you need to keep some things in mind. First, that they will save you money over time. They use less energy and last longer. Second, that in many areas you can find them free or discounted by your local power company. I’ve often found them at about $1 per bulb. It’s not a bad deal at all.
Whenever you try something new and green, just be sure that you are indeed going green. Many companies merely claim to be more environmentally friendly, greenwashing their products to appeal to that market. But when you check things out, they’re as bad as the usual stuff.
There are plenty of simple things you can do every day, from composting (putting your food trash out in the same place) to recycling it’s not a hard thing to do.
I was very surprised when my 2.8 years old son, asked me the other day: “Dad, why these plastic bottles dont go where regular trash is?”. If we start educating our children early on, they may have a chance living in a better place in the future.