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Living Green



Have you asked yourself "How do I go green?" and felt overwhelmed with the information you find? Sustainability is at the forefront of everyone's minds, but the same questions and concerns seem to often be raised:

*Does going green really matter?

*It's too expensive to go green or organic!

*But how can I make a difference?

*And where in the world do I start
?


Taking the first step toward living more sustainably can seem daunting, but it doesn't have to be. There are simple things you can do to set yourself on that path, and the best thing to do is take it one step at a time. If you've already replaced your incandescent lightbulbs with CFLs, and have a collection of cloth grocery bags, here are some other steps you can take:

Stop Junk Mail:

Put an end to incessant mailers and waste and save 69 lbs of junk mail sent to your home each year. Opt for e-newsletters, online catalogs and paperless billing whenever possible.

Drink Tap Water:

Nearly 30 billion plastic water bottles are sold annually in the U.S. with less than 20% othem being recycled (which still wastes unnecessary energy). Ironically, many bottled water companies use municipal water sources - that's right, tap water. Learn how to save resources and money by drinking from the tap or home filtration system instead

Reducing Waste:

Reducing the amount of waste you bring in and the amount of trash that goes to the landfill is an important part of any green lifestyle. But there's a lot more to it than just recycling plastic or throwing your trash in a bin. Educate yourself!

Conserve Energy:

From oil to natural gas, energy is getting harder to produce and more costly. It accounts for 21.3 billion tons of carbon dioxide each year and over 90% oall greenhouse gasses.

Conserve Water:

An estimated 50% oall household water usage is wasted. It goes down the drain while we wait for it to warm up or evaporates too quickly. In an era when our fresh water supply is diminishing due to pollution and drought, it's important to conserve all the water we can, as well as learn about and put to use greywater recycling practices.

Green Your Transportation:

Bicycling, walking, carpooling or riding the bus are the best ways to commute sustainably. Inflating your car tires, driving slower and combining trips will help you save gas when driving is necessary. And for long distance travel, take the train or purchase carbon offsets which invest your money into alternative energies.

Eat Organic, Locally-Grown Foods from Pomegranate Market!

With food being a huge part of our existence, this is one of the most important ways to go green. Most of our meals come from a minimum of 1,500 miles away. Some of what ends up on our plate has traveled around the world to reach you. And way too much of it is unhealthy for us.

Go Chemical-Free:

Fore-go toxic chemicals and choose sustainable options. You'll not only limit disposable containers, and save money; you'll create a healthy living environment for your family.

Natural Personal Care:

Simplify your personal care with natural products. Take sink baths to reduce water, use organic products or no products at all, opt for an easy to manage haircut (or learn to cut it yourself at home). Also remember that healthy food leads to healthy skin and body.

Support Locally-Owned Businesses:

Small businesses are more likely to support other businesses within the community, care for their environment and conduct business in an environmentally-responsible way. They also work harder for your business, contribute more to charitable causes, create more jobs, limit outsourcing and keep money circulating within a community. Sustainable communities rely on locally-owned businesses to prevail. And locally-owned businesses rely on you to succeed. Sacrifice a slightly higher price tag and get more than what you pay for.

Reconnect Within Your Community:

We live within a very disconnected generation. We're overscheduled and rushed and have among the lowest life satisfaction in the world. But those living a sustainable lifestyle often say the opposite while giving credit to the interconnectedness of their lives. Make time to care for yourself and find enjoyment in your life. Make talking and laughing with loved ones a priority. Volunteer and help those in need. Be a part of your community. And rediscover the wonders of the world by enjoying nature walks, planting trees or organizing neighborhood cleanups.

Contact Your Representatives:

Write or call your local city officials and ask them what your city or town is doing to go green. Do the same for state and federal leaders, demanding they hear you out on the environmental issues that matter most. Remain in contact with them, attend local or state meetings and vote with your conscience. Encourage others to do the same!
 

(These tips were taken from www.sustainablebabysteps.com , an excellent source for information on making the switch to green living a simple one!)