Reducing Your Carbon Footprint for Less

If you’re reading a green cleaning blog, you are probably concerned about your carbon footprint. I know I try to find new ways to reduce mine and being on a budget can limit my options. I have a close friend who went from riches to rags, forced into frugality by recession. She cut back on a lot of consumerism based behavior and learned to get along with less ‘stuff’. Having now recovered, she still lives by the tenets she learned in leaner times.

So how to be greener and reduce your carbon footprint without shelling out a lot of cash or buying new green products and contributing to the production of even more products? Take one or more of the following tips and try out living with less stuff. Even if you try for just 6 months, I think you’ll see a difference in how you purchase and what you purchase and hopefully, decide that sometimes; you don’t even need to purchase!

  • Get rid of the bottled water. Drink tap water, get a filter or make a tiny investment in a reusable drinking vessel.
  • Eat less meat and/or cheese. Animal products heavily contribute to carbon. Even if you just cut it out once a week, you’ll make a huge difference.
  • Try growing a few vegetables. You don’t have to have a full garden. Maybe a container or two on the porch. You’ll know it’s fresh, pesticide free, and you will shop a bit less in the produce section.
  • Keep your vehicle’s tires properly inflated. The recommended psi is inside of your door jam. This will make your vehicle a bit more fuel efficient.
  • Rain barrels can be an expense and you may (like me) live in an apartment. We use a couple of buckets to trap water when it rains and we use that water to nourish our plants on the porch.
  • Walk to your corner store or bike to the grocery store. I just purchased very inexpensive panniers for my bicycle and I may never drive for groceries again.
  • Shop at second hand stores. Even if I’m flush, I still do this. It helps reduce production of new materials and I find I enjoy that pretty skirt more knowing that it was inexpensive and reduced my carbon footprint.
  • Low-flow toilets can be a great way to reduce water consumption. Again, I live in an apartment and even if I didn’t, I wouldn’t want to replace a perfectly good toilet just to reduce water. Put a brick in the cistern! It will displace the water so that the toilet uses less to refill the tank.

Chime in and share your great, low-cost carbon footprint reducing ideas!