Our planet is facing its greatest threats on a daily basis. As days, weeks, and months go by action is required in order to make restoration of our planet and its habitats possible.  A sustainable planet means we are actively attempting to save our oceans and coral reefs, supply clean water to all, save threatened and endangered species, and even slowing our climate change.

Want to help make an impact by reducing your home’s carbon footprint? Here’s how!

Turn Off Water

One easy way you can reduce water consumption is by turning off the water when you’re not using it. That means when you’re brushing your teeth, you don’t need the water running if your toothbrush is in your mouth.

To a similar extent, turn the water off in your daily showers when you are shampooing and soaping up. This is known as the “navy shower” method and will not only help you conserve water, but will also cut down on your shower time.

Lastly, an easy change in your home would be to upgrade your shower head to a WaterSense labeled showerhead. These showerheads are designed to improve efficiency and reduce water consumption. Great for your utility bills, great for the environment.

Shop Local

Have you ever heard of food miles? The term food miles refers to how far food has traveled from the farm where it was produced to the plate where it will be consumed. Plant-based foods tend to have less food miles than animal-based products. Although you don’t have to go completely vegan, limiting your meat meals to 1-3 times per week can help.

Additionally, shopping for produce at local markets can also lessen your family table’s carbon footprint. Shopping locally instead of at large chain stores will bring many benefits including supporting your local economy and farmers, and having a fresher farm-to-table taste!

Use Energy-Efficient Appliances

When you think about the cost of your household appliances, the price tag you probably consider is your utility bills. Your washer, dryer, dishwasher and other appliances cost more than just those monthly bills, in fact there’s a cost on the environment as well.

Updating your appliances will not only save you money but it also conserves energy, improving the environment and sustainable development. Energy efficient appliances minimize exploitation of natural resources and allows us to conserve what we are using. 

If upgrading to energy efficient appliances isn’t in your budget, there are a few tips to still conserve energy with the appliances you do have. Try using cold water for your laundry and you can conserve about 5% more energy than when using warm water. You can also improve your fridgerator’s efficiency by keeping the temperature between 36-38 degrees Fahrenheit.

A hard fact is that working towards a thriving, healthy planet is not just up to scientists and activists. Everyone (including you!) can play a role in conservation through implementing simple changes in their home and reduce the carbon footprint.

Originally published on BarryNerhus.com


  • Barry Nerhus

    Experienced Biologist and Environmental Enthusiast

    Barry Nerhus is the founder and senior biologist of Endemic Environmental Services, Inc. He is also the president of the Institute for Conservation Research and Education. Barry strongly believes in understanding and conserving the environment as well as habitats throughout southern California. Having a passion for conservation biology, Barry also teaches part-time at a local community college to educate individuals!