I started practicing sustainability, accidentally, and unconsciously.
In 2015, I changed schools and I met a lot of people with reusable water bottles. I was surprised since I came from a school were nobody carried around water bottles but as time passed I got used to the idea and started liking it, to the point where I decided to buy one for me.
In 2016, I decided to purchase a reusable water bottle because It would last me all day or most of the day and I would fill it at home since it was 5 minutes away from school. Likewise, I could have the commodity of having water with me all the time at school and not have to ask permission to go to the water fountain every once in a while.
Automatically, when I started using it, I drank more water every day and I felt good about it. At first, It was uncomfortable carrying around a water bottle but time passed and I got used to it.
[Photo by Ethan Sykes. CC licensed.]
Today, I carry my water bottle to the beach, gym, college or anywhere I know taking my water bottle with me is going to be a good idea.
However, It wasn’t until my first year of college when I realized I was practicing sustainability.
Sustainability can be defined in the economic, social or environmental aspect, and when you practice sustainability as an individual, most of the time, you practice it for environmental reasons.
According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, sustainability is “of, relating to, or being a method of harvesting or using a resource so that the resource is not depleted or permanently damaged”.
So, how can you start to practice sustainability?
There are five ways you can start to practice sustainability and not do a drastic change in your life.
For starters, a good idea and an a simple one is,
- Buy a reusable water bottle
There are many benefits to buying a reusable water bottle. From not buying plastic and contributing to the plastic pollution in the world. In the long run, it’s very cost-effective.
- Switch from plastic toothbrush to bamboo toothbrush
When you’re done with your actual plastic toothbrush, try a bamboo toothbrush. Similar to the reusable water bottle, the bamboo toothbrush contributes less to the plastic pollution in the world. Even though it’s bristles are made from nylon, a plastic toothbrush still pollutes more. Just consider that every plastic toothbrush that you have used in your lifetime is still roaming around, and contaminating in the planet.
[Photo by Simon Shim. CC licensed.]
- Sip from a stainless steel straw
I’m sure you know that plastic straws are one of the top plastic pollutants in the sea, or at least, you have seen the video of the turtle with a plastic straw stuck in her nostrils. Buying a stainless steel straw helps to not hurt animals like turtles.
- Dig into your food with bamboo or reusable utensils
This switch is a very practical one, if you are a person that buys more food than cooks it. Likewise, if you bring homemade food to your school or workplace. Instead of using plastic utensils, you can use reusable ones.
- Lift groceries with a cloth produce bags (or a couple)
Most groceries stores give paper bags now, however, they contribute to the tree trimming industry. Also, they aren’t very reliable when you have a bag full of cans or frozen food. Therefore, a cloth produce bag is the way. Not only do you get to use your own bags, but you get to personalize them.