Many people think they need to make some huge, grand gesture to show that they’ve gone green. They need to buy a hybrid car, completely change their lifestyle, or completely stop using paper products. However, this isn’t true—just changing a few small practices can have a huge impact. Making drastic changes in your life as a way of going green will most likely make you resent changing, anyway, so it’s best if you start small. Here are a few little things you can do to start going green without making huge, sweeping changes.
• Stop using paper plates. While this does mean you’ll use more water since you’ll be washing your plates more often, you will use fewer resources and create less waste, plus the increased water usage isn’t really that much.
• Likewise, use cloth towels instead of paper towels and cloth napkins instead of paper napkins at meals. While there are some messes you really only want to use paper towels to deal with, most daily spills can be cleaned up with a cloth towel.
• Take your cloth shopping bags to the stores instead of using the paper or plastic bags they provide. Many stores now carry cloth shopping bags for you to purchase if you don’t have any of your own.
• Use the dishwasher instead of hand-washing dishes. It actually uses less water.
• Simply turn off the lights when you’re not in the room.
• Likewise, don’t leave the television on if you’re not watching it.
• When replacing light bulbs, put in compact fluorescent bulbs instead of standard bulbs. You’ll save money in the long run.
• Start a compost heap.
• Finally, if you don’t already, start recycling. Most cities have a recycling program, and you can get a free bin to collect your recyclables in. If your city doesn’t have a recycling program, urge your city council to start one.