There are many ways for each of us to reduce our impact on the environment—and the majority are remarkably easy. Here, we highlight six ways to go green. Your planet (and wallet) will thank you.
PLANT A ROOFTOP GARDEN - In addition to being atmospheric and adding a cool space to an apartment or condo, these urban green spaces provide great solutions to food production and urban environmental sustainability. Rooftop gardens—also known as green roofs—allow city dwellers to grow food for their own homes and help mitigate urban “heat islands.” Plus, the layers of soil and growth provide insulation to the building they are planted on, cooling it in the summer and heating it in the winter, decreasing energy consumption. Green roofs can be installed on sheds and homes, as well as on large commercial and industrial buildings.
USE BEESWAX FOOD WRAPS - Replacing Seran Wrap with reusable beeswax food wraps significantly reduces landfill waste. Beeswax wraps can seal opened packages, keep cheese, fruits and veggies fresh, or provide a secure seal on Tupperware containers. And, they are made locally at the Urban Bee Honey Farm in Saanichton.
AIM TO GO "ZERO-WASTE" - Small daily efforts can make this goal a reality. Buy reusable grocery bags, recycled products that leave a smaller carbon footprint and avoid single-use plastic. Canada’s Good Planet Company carries many items for home and lifestyle that will help get you started on this path.
ADD SOLAR PANELS - Outfitting your home with solar panels will help cut your electricity costs. Among the myriad options are Tesla’s Solar Roof panels, which include an integrated Powerwall battery, which means energy collected during the day is stored and made available any time.
LINE DRY YOUR LAUNDRY - During warmer months, save energy and money by avoiding the dryer altogether and line dry your laundry. The U.S.’s Environmental Protection Agency determined that a dryer uses more energy than a refrigerator, washer and dishwasher—line drying can reduce energy usage from major appliances in a typical household by as much as one-third.
GET A HOUSEPLANT - Go green at home (literally) by bringing in indoor plants. They improve air quality and boost your mood, among other science-backed benefits. Pot a ficus or Dracaena, they like the indoors and can provide some organic softness to any room. And don’t forget to water it using used water—like any rain water you collect, or the cold water that runs in your shower before it heats up