arts & sciences

Easy ways to go green on a budget and still save money

There are plenty of easy ways to go green without breaking the bank. People often think that going green is expensive because they associate it with eco-luxury marketed goods and services. That’s not the case at all. 

Small changes and consistent choices practiced every day in and around the house like choosing energy-efficient appliances, reducing water consumption and recycling are all great ways to start making a difference. Here are helpful tips on how to live a greener lifestyle while sticking to a budget:

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Make your home more energy efficient.

Cut down on energy costs by making your home more energy-efficient. Replacing old light bulbs with LED bulbs is a great way to do this. Not only do LED bulbs last longer, but they also use less energy. 

#Fact: LED lights are 80% cheaper than halogen lights.

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Save water and money.

Toilets are one of the biggest water wasters in the home, followed closely by showerheads. Switching to low-flow showerheads and toilets can make a big difference, and it means your water bill will be lower. Also, something as simple as a brick in your toilet tank (of the rubber kind, not a real one) can help you save water. 

#Fact: By installing only one low-flow showerhead, the average household in the United States can save about 2,900 gallons of water each year.

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Go bike!

Biking is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint and it’s also a great workout. You can save money on gas, parking and car maintenance by biking instead of driving. You can feel good knowing that you’re helping the environment so next time you’re headed to the store or the gym, consider hopping on your bike instead of getting in your car. 

#Fact: University of Oxford studies show that choosing a bike over a car just once a day can lower transportation-related emissions by 67% per person.

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Unplug energy vampires.

Even when an electronic is turned off, it still uses energy if it is plugged in. Unplugging electronics when they are not in use is a great way to do both. There are some easy ways to remember to unplug your electronics. You can plug all your electronics into one power strip and then turn the power strip off when you are not using them. You can also plug your electronics into a timer so that they automatically turn off at a certain time. 

#Fact: Unplugging those energy vampires can save the average household more than $100 per year.

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Bring your own bag.

Every year, billions of plastic bags are used and discarded. In fact, the average American uses about 365 plastic shopping bags each year. Luckily, there are easy ways to save money and help the environment by bringing your own bag when shopping. Reusable bags are inexpensive and can be used over and over again. Some stores even offer discounts for customers who use their own bags. In addition, reusable bags take up less space in landfills and require less energy to produce than disposable plastic bags. 

#Fact: You can save up to $10 per week by bringing your own bag(s) when shopping!

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Final thoughts

Transitioning from wasteful habits at home to an eco-friendly lifestyle does not happen overnight. Start small. Start with the easy things that you can consistently repeat then gradually add more practices.

Eco-friendly practices will not restrict you. On the contrary, you will be surprised by how they make things more convenient.

Going green doesn’t have to be expensive either. In fact, it can save you money. By following these simple tips, you can reduce your carbon footprint, make your home more energy-efficient, save water and even save money on transportation and groceries. 

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