Meg Harry & Andrea Marvin
1.FLY LESS. A lot of us have grown up in multiple countries or with families that live far away, so, of course, traveling is a big part of a lot of our lives. However, if you fly regularly, it’s likely that flying is the biggest contributor to your greenhouse gas emissions. If you can, try to avoid taking flights, opting for the train or a bus instead. If you have to fly, try to take non-stop flights instead of multiple connecting routes, since flights of shorter durations actually produce a larger amount of greenhouse gas emissions per passenger compared to longer routes. Additionally, flying coach instead of business or first class can have a major difference since the seats are heavier and take up more room on the plane.
2. ADJUST YOUR PERSONAL CARE HABITS. Tons of face and body washes contain microbeads (small pieces of plastic) that end up in our oceans and hurt our beautiful environment! Use bar soap instead! You should also try to avoid chemical based products and cotton swabs and most menstrual products because the chemicals and the products themselves can enter and damage the environment. All of these have eco-friendly alternatives: organic or natural washes, menstrual cups, and reusable cotton swabs or towels! P.S. Reach out to a Feminist Union representative to buy a menstrual cup!
3. FIX YOUR STUFF. Fix your stuff, don’t throw it out! Do you really need a new shirt? Or can you patch that small hole?
4. BUY LESS. Buy fewer new clothes. There is a great thrift market every Sunday in Menton Garavan. But, if you really can’t give up retail shopping, look for companies that have corporate responsibility plans and ethical practices. You can use the app “Good On You” to find out what brands are more sustainable than others!
5. EATING HABITS. Go to the market! There are great markets in Menton and Ventimiglia where you can purchase fresh produce and support local farmers. Meat and wheat production also have harsh effects on our planet; try practicing Meatless Mondays and Wheatless Wednesdays. Other easy switches are ditching the keurig or nespresso in favor of pour-over coffee, as well as switching from tea bags to loose-leaf tea.
6. NO MORE FOOD WASTE. Keep your left-overs in glass containers to save it for later, and, when you can, compost your produce scraps.
7. KITCHEN-FIXES. Some examples of quick switches in your kitchen include reusable cloth towels instead of paper towels, beeswax wrap instead of plastic wrap, and glass containers instead of plastic bags (try saving your pesto jars!).
8. GET A WATER BOTTLE. Please, please, please! Did you know that over 30,00,000 water bottles per day end up in landfills or the ocean? If you fill a water bottle 25%, that’s how much oil it took to make it. For real, get a water bottle. You can even reuse glass juice bottles!
9. CUT OUT PLASTICS. Think about this when you’re at the grocery store. Do you need to buy individually wrapped Bonne Mamman cookies? And, try to pick products in glass before plastic!
10. SAY NO TO FREEBIES. Don’t use plastic grocery bags, avoid to-go cups (@ the coffee machine!), restaurant take-home containers, and straws! You can bring your own reusable versions!
11. CLEAN CLEANING. Use natural cleaning products, or even just use vinegar! Chemical filled cleaning products, like personal care products, just end up in the water and hurt our environment all over again.
This article is part of the special edition in partnership with Environnementon