Eco-Living Magazine

Ways to Go Green This Summer

Posted on the 28 June 2011 by Alison_wood @midnight_eden

5 Ways to Go Green This SummerSummer is finally here and you know it’s the perfect time to teach your kids about the benefits of a sustainable lifestyle. This lesson can’t be taught from the books however, and must be practiced! Start with our five simple tips that will help you go green this summer!

1. Plant a Garden

Head to the local nursery and purchase plants, seeds and herbs of your choice. If you don’t have the space in your backyard to lend to a garden, plant the seeds in potted planters. In no time, you’ll have fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs growing in your backyard. This saves trips to the grocery store, cuts down on your food bill and teaches kids about growing their own fresh foods.

For starters, cost-effective produce to plant includes bell peppers, tomatoes, strawberries and garlic.

2. Avoid Running the Air Conditioning

Many families turn on their air conditioner at the start of the summer and then don’t turn it off until Labor Day. Take a new approach and try not running the unit, relying on the convenience of windows and warm summer breezes. In the mornings, block out the summer sun by keeping the shades and blinds closed.

Determine which way the breeze is moving and open the windows to accompany it. Save strenuous activities for the evenings when it’s cooler, and keep lots of cool drinks on hand for the kids. Consider investing in retractable awnings for the patios or windows, and if you must run the AC, consider using portable ones instead.

3. Spruce Up the Yard with Solar Lights

Instead of having electric lights outdoors, replace them with Eco-friendly solar lights. These lights depend on the renewable energy from the sun. The only catch is that the lights must be in a spot where they receive sunlight during the day so they can charge. Plus, they’re kid-friendly as there are no wires running throughout the yard. Plus, they provide necessary illumination for the safety of the yard.

4. Reduce Water Bottles

So many families purchase packs of water to keep their families hydrated, but this adds too much waste to the landfills. Instead, let everyone in the family pick out their own water bottle. You can then fill up the bottles with fresh water at the start of each day. For trips to the park, pack a water cooler and let the kids fill up from here.

5. Reduce Transportation

With more families home for the summer, there is more traffic on the road that adds to carbon dioxide emissions. With the cost of fuel, think before you head out for the day. Pack errands into one day so you do not continually have to depend on the car. Get your exercise in by riding bikes to the local pool or rollerblading to get ice cream.

When planning your family vacation, center it around Eco-friendly choices such as being able to take the train, rent out a cabin or spend the days at nature parks and beaches.

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