Looking for simple ways to do your part for your community?

Green Entrepreneur and Founder of RUMI X, Melissa Chu shares her advice on how we can mindfully contribute to a greener, cleaner planet every day.

1) Stop Junk Mail

Every year 100 million trees are chopped down for junk mail sent to American homes. Contact The Direct Marketing association at The-DMA.org to remove your name from mailing lists of their members. Say yes to paperless e-statements to curtail junk mail. Login to your bank and utilities accounts to select “go paper free” and you’ll save trees, water, and emissions, too.

2) Recycling is not just for the home

?Recycle paper at at the office by having a communal “recycle paper” bin and reuse blank sides of the papers for jotting down notes or diagramming things out. Buy recycled paper ?products and support the whole cycle.

3) Serviettes, please!

Cut the paper napkin out, literally. Paper napkins are not a necessity even if we think they are. One study says that the average American uses six napkins a day—astoundingly, 2,200 a year! Make like the French, and use a proper fabric table napkin when dining at home, which you can wash and reuse again. It also makes us feel a little bit fancier, and would literally save billions of bleached white squares in our overflowing landfills.

4) Buy local when possible

Shopping for food produced closer to home makes sense. We save on the carbon footprint it would take to get it here while supporting our local economy too, and Farmers Markets are a fun place to chill and meet friends.

5) Swap bulbs to LED lights in your home

LED’s are the most progressive lighting option when considering energy saving. They use one third of the electricity of a regular incandescent bulb and last 10 times longer. They have become the standard and are pretty much available at any convenience store nowadays. No need to hunt around for these super lights anymore.

6) Invest in a reusable bottle

Tote your reusable coffee mug or water bottle with pride and skip buying a new one at every lunchtime stop.

7) Reuse and repurpose

Change your mindset and think twice before throwing anything out. Think, “how can this be repurposed?” Google it, Youtube it, and you can basically find any DIY video out there to give new life into whatever you have on hand. There are some pretty nifty life hacks out there to save money?

8) Reusable bags are not just for the market – use them for all shopping!

Sounds obvious, right? Well, in an average year, U.S. households use about 100 billion plastic bags, 99 percent of which are never recycled. The horror!

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Photo by Caroline Attwood on Unsplash