Sustainability | Renewable Energy

Start Shopping Sustainably



Why You Should Start Shopping Sustainably This Year

By Cora Gold

 

Sustainability has become a major concern in recent years. If you value it, you’re probably wondering how to lessen your carbon footprint. While life gets in the way sometimes, you can make small changes to your shopping habits to reduce your environmental impact. Making more eco-conscious decisions while shopping is one of the easiest things you can do to protect the planet.


What Is Sustainable Shopping?

 

Sustainable shopping is all about the decisions you make when purchasing something. Being eco-conscious requires careful consideration of the environmental impact of your purchases. This includes assessing the quality, materials, and manufacturing processes that go into creating a product. As a sustainable shopper, you aim to choose environmentally friendly products and minimize waste as much as possible. Every little bit counts.


The Importance of Shopping Sustainably

 

The global human population will reach 10 billion by 2060, requiring more resources to sustain. All these resources come from the Earth, but the demand for them frequently surpasses their regeneration rates.

In fact, Earth Overshoot Day in 2024 — the day in a year when humans use more than the Earth can renew — will happen as soon as August 1st. With sustainability becoming a pressing issue for the survival of future generations, everyone must work together to lower their carbon footprints.


Tips for a Sustainable Shopping Trip

 

Next time you go to the shops, consider the following sustainable shopping practices.

Shop Locally

Whenever possible, choose to shop at local stores. Online shopping and same-day deliveries have become popular, but the increase in delivery vehicles and packaging required to meet this demand only increases greenhouse gas emissions. When you shop locally, you’ll reduce the transportation distance and potential pollution from your purchase.

Look for Green Packaging

Packaging accounts for 65% of household waste, and a large portion is plastic. As you may know, plastic will never fully break down. When incinerated, it releases toxic gases into the atmosphere. You can reduce your plastic waste by choosing products wrapped and shipped in green packaging made of biodegradable or recyclable materials.

Support Sustainable Brands

Today, many businesses are transparent about their manufacturing practices and material sourcing. Some even make it a significant part of their branding. However, don’t just take their word for it.

Look into their environmental policies and certifications to find proof of their efforts. When you find and support genuinely eco-friendly brands, you’ll be directly helping the planet.

Choose Reusable and Recyclable Products

Buying products made from recycled materials is an excellent way to decrease your environmental impact. They contribute to a circular economy — a concept that promotes materials reuse and limited waste.

You can also choose reusable items, such as menstrual cups or water bottles. This way, you can cut back on waste by not having to buy the same thing multiple times. Ensure you choose high-quality pieces so they last for as long as possible.

Bring Your Own Bags

The final tip is a simple, quick way to reduce waste — take a reusable bag to the shops. The global population uses over 500 billion plastic bags yearly, often for only 15 minutes before throwing them away. You can avoid contributing to this wasteful practice by purchasing an eco-friendly fabric bag and taking it with you every time.


What You Do Matters

Every person has the power to decide which company they support, and choosing sustainable ones will benefit the planet and everyone who lives on it. It can feel like the problem of pollution and waste is too large to overcome, but individual choices do add up. Even if you can only do one or two small things to reduce your personal waste and carbon footprint, it’s a step in the right direction.



About the author: Cora Gold is a sustainability writer who aims to live a healthy, low-waste lifestyle. Read more from Cora in Revivalist magazine, LinkedIn and Twitter



 

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