12 Simple Ways How To Reduce Your Carbon Footprints

Have you ever thought about how to reduce your carbon footprints? Well, here are some simple ways which you can embrace for making a difference to Mother Earth.

Climate change is one of the biggest challenges we’re facing (other than the pandemic, of course!) and our actions over the last 200 years have affected our planet in unimaginable ways, leading to global warming and a hole in the ozone layer!

Yeah, it’s as scary as it sounds and if we don’t get conscious of our actions now, it might just get too late!

Reducing our carbon footprint is one thing that we need to focus on, and in this article, we shall talk about some simple (yet effective) ways in which you can reduce your carbon footprints.

Before we dig deeper into the steps, let’s first understand what is actually meant by ‘Carbon Footprints’.

According to nature.org – ‘A carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases (including carbon dioxide and methane) that are generated by our actions. … To have the best chance of avoiding a 2℃ rise in global temperatures, the average global carbon footprint per year needs to drop under 2 tons by 2050.’

Ways to reduce your carbon footprint at home:

Home is the place where we can begin to focus on our actions, nurture our consciousness and indulge in making better choices.

1. Make sensible food habits.

You’d be surprised to know that our food habits heavily impact the environment. I know it’s hard to resist that beef burger, but limiting our meat consumption can make a huge difference.

We are mostly ignorant of the fact that meat and dairy products require a lot of land, water, and energy to produce.

Not just that, but they also create a lot of methane – a greenhouse gas that is hazardous for Mother Earth, and has been the major cause of global warming.

What’s more dangerous is the food that’s shipped from overseas which uses a lot more resources than local produce.

One of the first steps to check our carbon footprint is by reducing our animal-based diet and slowly shifting to a plant-based diet.

The next step would be to stop buying imported food products and indulge in shopping locally-sourced food, which would eventually help the local economy and support the farmers.

 

2. Be sensible with the water usage.

Do you love to stand under the shower for hours, playing with your thoughts? Well, it’s time to put a pause to that.

The shower uses approximately 2.5 liters of water per minute, which means cutting down your shower by 5 to 10 mins can save you around 12 to 25 liters per shower!

And it’s not just the usage of water but also about the energy that’s used to pump and heat the water that you’re using for the shower.

It is also important to mindfully use water while washing our clothes, utensils, etc. Try to reuse water as much as possible.

For example, the water you use to clean clothes can be reused to water the plants, if it doesn’t contain harmful chemicals (detergent soaps).

Water that is used to clean fruits and vegetables, can also be reused. You can reduce your carbon footprint drastically by eliminating unnecessary water consumption.

 

3. Check the usage of appliances/ electronics at home, and opt for low-energy consumption products.

Whether buying energy-saving light bulbs or choosing appliances with a high energy star rating, you can make your home more eco-friendly.

While stepping out, make sure to switch off all the lights and fans, as well as those electrical appliances that are not in use.

Not just that, but we also need to unplug our devices because all electronics suck energy when they’re plugged in, even though they are not in use.

Replace the old lights and bulbs with the LED lights, as they consume a lesser amount of energy. Don’t put hot objects immediately into the fridge/freezer, as that requires more energy to cool the food down.

Wash your dishes by hand rather than using a dishwasher – it’ll help in saving energy as well as water.

Changing your sleeping pattern can also make a difference. If you sleep early, you’ll be using fewer lights, and waking up early will enable you to make better use of sunlight.

Making small changes in our daily lives can eventually help us in reducing our carbon footprints to a great extent.

 

4. Embrace the ‘Reduce-Reuse-Recycle’ theory.

The lesser amount of waste we generate, the better it is for our environment. No matter whether it’s plastic or food waste, globally we dump over 2.12 billion tons of waste per year! Yeah – that might sound shocking, but it’s the truth!

Whenever you go shopping, buy mindfully. Remember, the more things we buy, the more waste we add to the already existing (huge) amount!

Before buying, think if it’s necessary for you and how much you’re going to use it. If it’s something you can do away with, don’t buy.

A research has shown that 6% of greenhouse gas is generated through food waste. You can also reduce your food wastage by composting and nurturing a kitchen garden, as well as buying vegetables/fruits in bulk to avoid the usage of plastic bags.

While buying something, check the longevity/usability of the products. Also, before throwing away old stuff, see if you can reuse them in any way.

For example, cut out your old jeans to make a bag out of that; use broken cups/glasses as planters; make some DIY decors with plastic bottles, etc, so and so forth.

If any item that you wish to discard can be recycled, then go ahead and do it. Embracing simple lifestyle changes can be immensely impactful.

 

Ways to reduce your carbon footprint at work:

Although the pandemic has turned our world upside down, forcing us to work from home, it’s essential that we keep in mind certain things, so that once we get back to work, we can still keep a check on our carbon footprints.

5. Drive less.

Once you start heading back to work, make to drive less. Use public transport instead (obviously, by maintaining proper safety and social distancing), or even better if you can cycle down to the office.

A decrease in the number of vehicles on the road will not only reduce CO2 emissions, but it’ll also lessen traffic congestion.

In case you drive, try to keep the windows open and put off that AC – that way, you’ll get some fresh air, and also save the environment.

 

6. Reduce the usage of paper.

In today’s date, when the world can function online, why do so much paperwork? The more papers we use, the more trees are cut down! It’s time that we go digital and stick to doing things online.

Also, managing so many papers and files can be a tiresome chore in itself, thus it’s always easier to have things in one place on your laptop/ desktop and access things online. There are various tools that can make your day-to-day work life easier.

 

7. Switch off the laptop/desktop when not in use.

You must have noticed that the devices get hot while we use them – that’s because of the energy they consume and generate. It’s advisable to shut the devices when not in use, rather than keeping them in sleep mode.

 

Ways to reduce your carbon footprint when traveling

As we set out for exploring the world, it is necessary that we are mindful of our actions and keep a check on our plastic footprints while traveling.

8. Eliminate single-use plastic.

“It’s just a straw”, said a million people! – The first time I had heard this quote, it hit me hard.

Being a traveler, I understand how convenient it is to grab a bottle of mineral water while on the go or to pick up those munchies wrapped in plastic.

However, we tend to forget that those conveniences come at a cost that can doom our future generations.

Not only are they fairly dreadful for the environment, polluting the land and the oceans, but they also require energy to produce and recycle.

Make sure to carry your own bottle of water while traveling and keep refilling it while on the do. Pack your reusable straw, cutleries, tiffin boxes if necessary, to minimize using disposable goods.

 

9. Switch to environment-friendly products.

Have you ever thought about where all the sanitary pads, diapers, and toilet papers are going? Well, maybe deep down in the oceans – leading to a life threat for the marine animals!

How about making some conscious changes while using certain products, that will not just be environment-friendly, but also super easy to use?

Ditch those sanitary pads and start using a menstrual cup instead. Avoid carrying those plastic bottles of shampoo and conditioners, and switch to using shampoo bars.

Rather than using facewash, apply natural products like yogurt and turmeric to clean your face.

 

10. Always take a direct flight to your destination.

Flying on an airplane can double your carbon footprints, than any other mode of transport. And when you opt for a connecting flight, it is further increased!

Aim to reduce the number of stops while flying, and pick a direct flight to your destination. It’ll save your time & energy, as well as do good to the environment.

 

11. Shop locally.

When you’ve picked up souvenirs, avoided branded goods and shop the locally made products.

Not only will you get to supports the local artisans and businesses, but you’d also get to reduce your carbon footprints by avoiding imported products.

 

12. Be a part of a volunteer program and serve the environment.

How about picking up your trash while trekking or cleaning the beach during your vacay?

These might sound odd, but a lot of millennials are indulging in acting towards saving the world from the excess amount of waste that’s generated each day, by travelers at the popular tourist spots.

You can opt to volunteer while traveling, and choose to be a part of something meaningful.

Planting trees, educating the locals about climate change, and protecting the wildlife can be a few options to volunteer for.

Our Earth is in danger, but we can try our best to protect it, if we act sensibly. Embracing these simple steps in our daily lives would show immediate results, and eventually, they’ll make bigger impacts on the environment and climate changes.

Would you care to reduce your carbon footprints and become a more aware human being?

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