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20 Simple Tips for a Greener Lifestyle



Vegetable garden by Nick Saltmarsh via Flickr

Having an environmentally-friendly home can help save on utility bills and reduce your carbon footprint. Owning an economical car can use less gas and release fewer emissions. But have you thought about your overall lifestyle? Implementing green practices into your everyday routine can play a huge role in the health of the environment.

Let’s take a look at a few simple things you can do:

1. Recycle VHS Tapes

The plastic and film used in your old VHS tapes can be recycled and used to produce other things, reducing the amount of plastic produced inorganically. It’s simple to convert VHS tapes into a more modern format, and it will save space in the basement.

2. Take Shorter Showers

Don’t wait for the water to heat up before hopping in the shower. Also, quickly lather and get out, so you can reduce water consumption. This is particularly important if you live in an area affected by drought.

3. Walk More Frequently

If you only live a couple of miles from work or the grocery store, walk instead of drive. You’ll get your exercise and avoid emissions of any kind.

4. Purchase a Recycling Bin

When you sign up for garbage disposal with the city, sign up for a recycling bin as well. It costs just a few more dollars per month, but it gives you an opportunity to decrease the mountains of waste in our landfills.

5. Utilize Reusable Bags

The next time you go shopping, spend an extra dollar or two on reusable shopping bags. Bring these with you whenever you go shopping to reduce the use of paper and plastic bags.

6. Switch to All-Natural Cleaners

You’d be surprised to learn how many chemicals your everyday cleaning supplies emit. Switching to natural ingredients like baking soda, vinegar, and lemon will protect your home from these toxins.

7. Plant Drought-Resistant Greenery

Plants like cactus and succulents need very little water, but will give your yard the beautiful greenery it deserves.  You might also choose to remove your grass in favor of wood pellets and other drought-friendly landscaping.

8. Reduce Meat Intake

If you like to eat meat, try to limit your consumption to just a couple of times per week. This will save you money and help protect wildlife.

9. Shop Secondhand

There’s no shame in purchasing clothing that’s already been worn or picking up a used recliner at a thrift store. This saves landfills and lessens energy and waste from manufacturers.

10. Boycott Bottled Water

Use a water purifier on your kitchen faucet if you don’t like the taste of your tap water, and use refillable water bottles instead.

11. Salvage Cell Phones

It’s tempting to throw broken cell phones away, but doing so can lead to toxins and chemicals being released into the environment, so recycle them instead. Some phone companies will even purchase your old cell phones for a few dollars in order to promote the practice of recycling.

12. Use a Surge Protector

Save energy and protect your home from spontaneous fires.

13. Change Your Beauty Products

The beauty industry is one of the most harmful industries in the world. Their products are full of toxins and chemicals. You can support greener production by purchasing from manufacturers who deal with organic products.

14. Download Apps

Technology makes it easy to go green with apps like eEcosphere, which connects you with information and people interested in the movement. There’s also Buycott, which helps you avoid businesses that don’t care about the environment.

15. Recycle Rain Water

If you live in an area that gets a lot of rain, put out rain barrels for collection. You can use this water for your plants and lawn.

16. Switch to CFLs

Compact fluorescent lights are much more efficient than traditional light bulbs because the energy goes more to light than heat, meaning there’s less wasted energy.

17. Join the Sharing Economy

Young people are all about sharing nowadays, which is having a positive effect on the environment. They share everything from lodging to transportation, which limits their carbon footprints extensively.

18. Eat Local

Purchase fresh produce and other products from local farms and businesses. The closer the products are to home, the less they have to travel to get to you. That means fewer emissions from transportation vehicles.

19. Support Local Businesses

The same concept applies here. When the travel is minimal for products and services, it supports a cleaner environment.

20. Teach Your Children

Help your children understand the importance of making eco-conscious decisions. If you teach them young, they’ll make greener choices consistently, which could lead to a generation that’s focused on sustainability.


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Extra-Mile Water Conservation Efforts Amidst Shortage



water conserving

While some states are literally flooding due to heavy rains and run-off, others are struggling to get the moisture they need. States like Arizona and California have faced water emergencies for the last few years; water conserving efforts from citizens help keep them out of trouble.

If your area is experiencing a water shortage, there are a few things you can do to go the extra mile.

Repair and Maintain Appliances

Leaks around the house – think showerheads, toilets, dishwashers, and more – lead to wasted water. Beyond that, the constant flow of water will cause water damage to your floors and walls. Have repairs done as soon as you spot any problems.

Sometimes, a leak won’t be evident until it gets bad. For that reason, make appointments to have your appliances inspected and maintained at least once per year. This will extend the life of each machine as well as nip water loss in the bud.

When your appliances are beyond repair, look into Energy Star rated replacements. They’re designed to use the least amount of water and energy possible, without compromising on effectiveness.

Only Run Dishwasher and Washer When Full

It might be easier to do a load of laundry a day rather than doing it once per week, but you’ll waste a lot more water this way. Save up your piles of clothes until you have enough to fully load the washing machine. You could also invest in a washing machine that senses the volume of water needed according to the volume of clothes.

The same thing goes with the dishwasher. Don’t push start until you’ve filled it to capacity. If you have to wash dishes, don’t run the water while you’re washing. Fill the sink or a small bowl a quarter of the way full and use this to wash your dishes.

Recycle Water in Your Yard

Growing a garden in your backyard is a great way to cut down on energy and water waste from food growers and manufacturers, but it will require a lot more water on your part. Gardens must be watered, and this often leads to waste.

You can reduce this waste by participating in water recycling. Using things like a rain barrel, pebble filtering system, and other tools, you can save thousands of gallons a year and still keep your landscaping and garden beautiful and healthy.

Landscape with Drought-Resistant Plants

Recycling water in your yard is a great way to reduce your usage, but you can do even more by reducing the amount of water required to keep your yard looking great. The best drought-resistant plants are those that are native to the area. In California, for example, succulents grow very well, and varieties of cactus do well in states like Arizona or Texas.

Install Water-Saving Features

The average American household uses between 80 and 100 gallons of water every single day. You obviously can’t cut out things like showering or using the toilet, but you can install a few water-saving tools to make your water use more efficient.

There are low-flow showerheads, toilets, and faucet aerators. You could also use automatic shut-off nozzles, shower timers, and grey water diverters. Any of these water saving devices can easily cut your water usage in half.

Research Laws and Ordinances for Your City

Dry states like California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Nevada must create certain laws to keep the water from running out. These laws are put into practice for the benefit of everyone, but they only work if you abide by the laws.

If you live in a state where drought is common, research your state and city’s laws. They might designate one day per week that you’re allowed to water your lawn or how full you can fill a pool. Many people are not well versed in the laws set by their states, and it would mean a lot to your community if you did your part.

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Cyprus is the Forerunner for Ecotourism



When I was looking for a second citizenship, I happened to see One Visa’s offer on Cyprus Citizenship by investment program. I had heard about Cyprus being a beautiful country, but I did not know much else, so I decided to start my own research about this gem of a place.

After I did some research, I discovered that Cyprus is a popular destination for tourists. Unfortunately, heavy tourism and the associated development affected villages here and there, with some communities being slowly abandoned. To avoid this from happening any further, Cyprus went into ecotourism, and today, it is the forerunner in this arena. Let’s look in further detail at ecotourism in Cyprus here.

How was it started?

It all started in 2006 with the launch of the “Cyprus Sustainable Tourism Initiative.” This program has the sole scope of promoting ecotourism developments in the tourism industry. It concentrates on those areas which require conservation and environmental safety. At the same time, it helps develop social, as well as economic statuses in the rural parts of Cyprus. Through this program, the government was able to acknowledge that ecotourism will play an essential role in the future of Cyprus, with the concept gaining momentum among tourists from all over the globe.

How to go about it?

So, now you are interested in going for an ecotourism vacation in Cyprus. How will you go about it? I would immediately say that everyone should visit the quaint Cypriot villages spread throughout the island. These communities have a smaller population, and not many tourists visit. They make for a great relaxing spot. Enjoy seeing the bustle of village life go by where simple pleasures abound. Most hamlets are linked by specific minibus tours which ferry tourists to these havens. These trips will have a regular schedule, aimed at promoting ecotourism further. Such tours will be regulated to ensure that while the villages can benefit and develop, they do not get overpopulated or overcrowded with tourists. Therefore, you can be sure to enjoy the beautiful sceneries that nature has to offer here.

If you are wondering if there are any activities to do here, my answer would be: “Yes, plenty.” You can go for some guided walks across various regions here. Here you will be able to explore the diversified natural beauty and wildlife of the area. Several agritourism activities and services are planned to open shortly. Once launched, you will be able to engage in picking olives, milking goats, and several other such events here.

What can be learned?

Although we are aware that natural resources need to be preserved, we do not always remember it in real life. When we go on tours such as these, we can realize the significance of protecting nature. Also, when more and more people visit these places, the concept of ecotourism will become popular among more people. Awareness about ecotourism is set to grow and spread throughout the world. Subsequently, sustainable tourism will gain popularity around the globe with Cyprus being the forerunner for ecotourism .

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