Seven Green Resolutions for 2012

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The new year’s almost here! Come up with a resolution for 2012 yet? As with any resolution, the key is to choose something feasible. A change you can make without major stress or strife is most likely to become permanent. If you don’t have one in mind yet, here are some great “green” resolution ideas to make your new year a little (or even a lot!) more eco-friendly than the last:

1. Convert to cloth tissues: single-use, disposable facial tissues create a lot of unnecessary waste. Reusable tissues are easy to make out of old shirts or other soft fabrics. Wash them with your regular laundry and you’ve created no waste, and used no extra water (because your laundry has to be washed anyway!). Check out our post on cloth tissues for some extra insight.

2. Ban paper towels: Make your house a paper towel-free zone by converting to reusable rags for cleaning and cloth napkins for dining. It’s an easy habit to pick up, and you’ll cut down enormously on non-recyclable paper waste!

3. “Meatless Mondays”: By choosing not to eat meat one day per week, you’ll reduce your average meat consumption by about 14 percent. Doing so will lower your carbon footprint and may even improve your health! Learn more about Meatless Mondays here.

4. Start a compost pile: Another incredible way to cut down on household waste that your garden (if you have one) will thank you for! See our posts on urban composting and composting in Austin for some helpful tips to get you started.

5. Bike to work or school one day a week: Or take public transportation, or walk, or build a boat from old limbs and float down your local creek. Whatever you choose, it’s always good to set a specific goal that’s manageable for you. Weekly goals are good because they are easy to keep track of, and not overwhelming.

6. Start a garden: Spend less money at the store *and* eat healthy, fresh food. Yee haw! If you live in Central Texas, you may find this seasonal planting guide from Austin Organic Gardeners helpful in figuring out what to plant.

7. Share something: The simple act of sharing can save money and resources while fostering kindness in communities. You could share something you own, for example: a set of power tools or perhaps a skill you have like, for example, bicycle repair. Sharing’s contagious too, so you’re likely to start a trend with your friends and neighbors that’ll be beneficial to you as well!

(image, starring our very own Chris Pepe: Patrick Lane Photography)

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