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Going green

  • Published at 10:28 pm August 25th, 2016
Going green

It's very important for each of us to appreciate the eco-friendly steps we take to work towards healthier lifestyle and planet. It's not easy to adopt a sustainable lifestyle, but the little changes in our lives can make a big difference someday. And we can start right from our home.

Here are two easy ways to make an impact:

Save energy

During summer, it's hot outside and it seems to get hotter each day. Everyone likes to sit inside an AC room or underneath a ceiling fan. But these are not the only ways to keep cool. Let's think about some ways that can save energy and avoid tormenting yourself over electricity bills.

Most of the unwanted heat comes from glass windows. Using shades and closing the curtains can prevent heat from getting into your room. It will help to lower your indoor temperature. In summer, cool air flows during the night time. So, keep the doors and windows open at night. It will help naturally cool the interior of your house.

Let’s think about using rechargeable batteries. It reduces waste and energy. Batteries contain highly toxic chemicals. Therefore, they should not be tossed into the trash. It is better if we can recycle these batteries. Car batteries can be recycled at auto shops and household batteries such as IPS batteries can be recycled through battery retailers. Even though we don’t have any manufacturing companies for computers, laptops and cellphone batteries in Bangladesh, we can still try to look for alternative options in terms of recycling such items.

Another great step is allowing natural light to come through your window and doors. One can also save up on energy consumption by using energy saving light bulbs at home and for décor items as these lights use less energy and lasts more than the standard bulbs. It will also greatly reduce electricity bills. Whenever you finish your work, switch off appliances to save more energy. Also, think about installing solar panels on the rooftop of your home – if you really want to make a positive impact on the environment.

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Sustainable eating

Modern life is ill-equipped for growing your own food because it's time consuming and we don’t have the necessary time or space to plant trees at home. But if you really think about it, humans have grown their own food for hundreds and thousands of years. Now we have shifted these responsibilities to others. Let’s not think that you are asked to make a whole garden, but growing just one will make a difference and have beneficial impacts on the environment. Start with something simple such as potted herbs or a potato sack. It can easily grow on a windowsill.

The demand of food is increasing with the rapid growth of population. It is making huge impacts on the ecology. Food production, supply and consumption are very complex. According to an article by Bryan Walsh, published in the Time magazine, titled “The Triple Whooper Environmental Impact of Global Meat Production”, livestock production which includes milk, meats, eggs – contributes to 40% of global agricultural gross domestic product, and uses one third of the world's fresh water. He also said, “There may be no other single human activity that has a bigger impact on the planet than the raising of livestock.”

So we can consider sustainable eating habits to reduce the impact on the environment. For instance, if you are eating meat, reduce the number of meals containing meat each week or if you eat fish then choose sustainable sourced species. Consider trying new seafood as some species are in great danger of extinction. Always look for sustainable, fair trade and environmental friendly food that helps the economy. Avoid food with containers and unnecessary packaging as it is processed. Look for farmers markets or local bazaars for fresh food. Filling half of your plate with green vegetables and fruits greatly helps the cause.

One of the simplest thing about sustainable eating is to focus on what are you eating; it reflects on where your food comes from and how it is nourishing your body and mind.

These two ways can bring significant changes in your life and the world you are living in. In the next part of the article we will talk about a few other important things that can change the way you look at sustainable living.