(AscendHealthy.com) – It’s summertime, and people are busy planning outdoor activities and adventures. When it’s time to pack up and head out, the last thing many of us think about is the waste we’ll be creating before we return home. Being more sustainable is important because it protects the environment now and for future generations. Check out these five simple ways to enjoy a more sustainable summer.
1. Plant a Vegetable Garden
Veggies are one of the main food groups and essential to our good health. Fresh vegetables have limited shelf lives, especially by the time they make it to the grocery store. But one way to resolve the problem and hopefully prevent them from landing in the trash is to grow a vegetable garden.
Start with favorites like potatoes, zucchini, corn and tomatoes, and add more as needed or desired. Not only might we have the pleasure of growing our own vegetables, but we can also harvest fresh, organic food to fuel our families and neighbors well into the fall. In addition, a vegetable garden lays the foundation for healthy soil year after year with its organic compounds enriching the soil. It’s a win-win!
2. Choose Local
While a sustainable garden can be tucked away in the smallest yard or tiniest balcony, it may not be for everyone — and that’s okay! Sustainably getting fresh vegetables is as easy as checking out the local farmer’s market. Summer and fall are the perfect months to visit. Stick to local vendors and help support area farmers and merchants.
Farmer’s markets are more than vegetables. Look for selections of fruits, flowers, honey, baked goods and hand-crafted items. The treasures on sale may come as a pleasant surprise.
3. Plan a Reusable Picnic
Many people find picnics in their favorite outdoor setting relaxing and refreshing. Instead of picking things up along the way that may contain disposable cardboard or plastic, we can use items we choose to save.
Some novel ideas may include food wraps made from recycled beeswax, reusable silicone bags for cheese and grapes, metal straws and reusable water bottles. Add washable, reusable utensils and plates, a portable cooler, and a blanket or some camp chairs.
4. Tap Into Solar
Undoubtedly, solar power is the wave of the future. It’s also one of the cleanest forms of energy. With more contractors building homes with solar energy components and RVs even catching on with the trend, it’s a sustainable measure we can easily utilize.
Solar energy helps generate free power and also helps reduce the load on the nation’s main electrical grid. While there is an initial investment, the long-term payoff helps the environment and the pocketbook.
5. Target Trash
Over 11 million tons of recyclable materials make their way to dumpsters and landfills each year. It’s a staggering amount, and we could repurpose many of these items. Furniture, textiles, food and plastics are just a few of them.
Don’t forget to recycle all household materials, and if you see something heading to the landfill that could be reused or donated, save it. One small piece of trash could end up being someone’s long-lost treasure.
It pays to find ways to protect the planet. There are many small measures that can greatly impact the community and the ecosystem. We can each take little steps, one step at a time, to save the Earth and still enjoy a spectacular summer sustainably.
~Here’s to Your Healthy Ascension
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