Green Tips: Beginner’s Guide to Going Green This Summer
Green Tips | June 25, 2020
Summer is a great time to set new goals like working out more often or trying a new hobby. If you’re looking to make more sustainable lifestyle choices this year, look no further! Kick off your summer right with our beginner’s guide for going green.
Everyone loves outdoor parties and barbecues in the summer, but did you know that they can be bad for the environment? It’s estimated that each year on the Fourth of July, 60 million barbecues release an average of 225,000 tons of CO2 into the atmosphere. Choosing which grill you use makes a big difference. Wood and charcoal grills are popular because they provide great flavor for grilling, but they also have the biggest environmental impact.
An electric grill or solar grill can be a great investment as you will never need to purchase fuel. Gas or propane grills run on fossil fuels, but have lower harmful emissions compared to other fuel-burning grills. There are also hybrid grills that run on electricity and bits of wood or charcoal.
Whether you want to get in better shape or adopt a more environmentally friendly lifestyle, summer is the perfect time to eat healthier food. During the summer months, farmers’ markets and community gardens throughout New York offer fresh, local produce directly from farmers in the region. The fresher the food, the better it is for you! Also, many farmers markets offer organic produce, which means it is cultivated using pesticide- or chemical-free practices. Biking or walking to the farmers’ market can be a great way to get some exercise, purchase fresh vegetables, and support your local economy. Make sure to practice social distancing and wear a mask when in public!
Get out and support your local community by volunteering to clean up a park or stream. Connect with your local environmental organization, land trust, or government to inquire about volunteer opportunities. Giving back by volunteering at your local food pantry can also be a great way to help your fellow community members access healthy food during difficult times.
Many families go on vacation and travel during the summer. However, the unprecedented impact of the novel coronavirus has made traveling more difficult. Many people are opting for staycations instead. Staycations are typically more environmentally friendly because you aren’t traveling in a car or by plane. Consider using this time to connect with the outdoors right in your own area.
State parks, beaches, hiking trails, and lakes in more rural areas can be a great destination for you and your friends or family. If you need to drive, it’s not only less expensive than flying, but it’s also more environmentally friendly. A car generally produces around 400 grams of CO2 per mile while a plane generates more than 53 pounds per mile. Carpooling and reducing the amount of baggage in your car can make the trip more fuel efficient, as well. Even better, consider renting or investing in an electric vehicle or hybrid for your trip!
Summer is a perfect season to take the first step toward a greener lifestyle. While we know there are many other things we can do to protect the environment, we hope this list of tips gets you started.< Back to Citizen’s Toolkit
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