New Year’s Day is quickly approaching, and along with it, all those resolutions. Perhaps the best part of the New Year—besides the midnight toast—is getting to reflect on the past year and decide what changes you want to make as you move forward into the future. Making the choice to go green in the new year and resolving to adopt some eco-friendly actions will result in multiple positive changes to your wallet, your time, your health and the region’s air quality.
You just might be surprised at how truly easy it can be to incorporate sustainability into your everyday routine. By adopting just one of many green lifestyle changes, you can have a big impact on helping people all over the St. Louis region breathe easier in 2019. Here are a few simple New Year’s resolutions to consider to help improve the air quality:
- Walk, Bike, or Take Public Transit – The region’s public transit system, ridesharing and bike-sharing services are all designed to eliminate the use of multiple vehicles on the road and offer great alternatives for the work commute or an option to hopping in your car for short trips. Any steps you can take to reduce your solo commuting this year by walking, biking or taking public transportation can reduce auto emissions to help keep the air quality in healthy ranges.
- Properly Maintain Your Vehicle – Steps like checking engine performance, keeping tires properly inflated, replacing air filters every three months and changing oil regularly are all ways to become more environmentally friendly in the new year. Routine maintenance helps reduce emissions and fuel consumption, saving money at the pump and cleaning the air.
- Think globally, buy locally – Locally grown food has countless benefits to offer and helps to reduce environmental impact. Imported food is often shipped hundreds and sometimes even thousands of miles to arrive at the supermarket. The greater distance the food has to travel the more fossil fuels are consumed. Buying local produce reduces the amount of travel time for big transport trucks, ultimately improving the air quality by cutting back on air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.
- Clean Greener – Clean your home with non-toxic and natural cleaning products in the new year to avoid the harmful side effects. Create your own products by mixing a little warm water with either baking soda or white vinegar for the perfect all-purpose cleaner. Also, when replacing cleaning products, don’t just throw the old ones in the trash. If they’re too toxic for your home, they won’t be good for the drain or the landfill either.
- Green Your Home by Recycling – Recycling is an important part of going green by keeping waste out of landfills and turning glass, paper, plastic and other items into new materials. Set up separate recycling bins in your home so it is easy for all family members to participate and consider purchasing recycled products to help clean the air.
For more great tips on how we can work together to achieve cleaner air in 2019, visit www.cleanair-stlouis.com/air-quality-tips/, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter at @gatewaycleanair. Have a happy and healthy New Year!