As this year is coming to a close it’s time again to look back on all of those New Year’s Resolutions made and see how we can improve for the upcoming year. 2019 was the first year that I have been successful in keeping most of my goals. I think it is because I wasn’t trying to save a certain amount of money or change my body fat levels to a specific number. My goals were all in line with my values which helped me stay accountable. For 2020 I plan to do the same thing. So I thought I would share my upcoming goals with all of you for some inspiration!
I hope that as we reinvent ourselves every year we are becoming better versions of ourselves; becoming people that are more inclusive, more compassionate and even more eco-friendly!
10 Eco Goals 2020
1. Donate/Volunteer- With Colorado Gives Day coming up on Dec 10 it is a huge opportunity for people to chip in money or time to maximize fundraising. Sign up to help out with call banking, create your own fundraising page, make a “why I donate” video, and call friends, family, and coworkers to help. To get more information go to youtube for our instruction video to demystify and break down how to successfully fundraise.
2. Bring your own shopping bags/produce bags/containers- Many of us already use our own bags when we get groceries or go shopping but could you be doing more? I bought some reusable produce bags for bulk items, fruits, and veggies last year and they have been working out great! Not only do I save on plastic but I have had many people ask where I got them and when I tell them a local shop in my area, Mountain Mamas, that helps small business too! I have also been bringing my own to-go containers to places when we go out to eat or ordering out. I haven’t had a store tell me no because of health codes yet, so I say give it a go!
3. Shop slow, local, second hand, host clothing swaps -Fast fashion is still one of the top polluters after fossil fuels and agriculture. I have been taking a hard look at the Buyerarchy of Needs Pyramid and only buying things new when I NEED them and buying second hand isn’t an option. But this year I pledge to do more. I am going to hold clothing swaps so friends and family can get “new” clothes and money can stay out of fast fashion hands. I am also going to try to only buy from slow fashion shops or second hand/vintage stores. Here in Colorado Springs, we have so many popping up, and I am sure around the state there are more!
Photo Credit: Sarah Lazarovic
4. Hang laundry to dry- Up to 10-20% of your home’s energy bill could be from your dryer! I suggest hanging clothes on a line or in winter months hanging them on a drying rack. Doing this quick fix can cut 10-20% of your house’s carbon footprint. Easy as pie!
If you want some bonus points, start using cold water to wash and DIY laundry soap!
5. DIY cleaners- In most US homes the air pollution is higher inside than outdoors. Most of this is due to chemical cleaners and air fresheners. Step one would be to open your windows on a regular basis to air out your home. Step two would be to make your own cleaning supplies.
6. Switch to sustainable TP! There are a handful of companies including Grove and What the Crap that make bamboo toilet paper and paper towels. Bamboo is an awesome alternative to traditional TP because it only takes 3-5 months to grow where trees take 10-25 years.
7. Divest! Hit the fossil fuel companies where it hurts… their wallet! Take your retirement money and investments out of fossil fuel companies and invest them in green alternatives. Move your checking and savings away from fossil-fuel funding banks like Chase and Wells Fargo, and bank instead with credit unions or public banks. This way we can keep our money local and out of fossil fuel’s dirty oily hands.
8. Go outside- Researchers have found that in as little as five minutes in nature, mood, motivation and self-esteem increase. Serotonin and dopamine levels correlate with how much time is spent in sunlight. Feeling connected to nature can also ground us in our motivations towards the climate movement and remind us why we fight the good fight.
9. Legislative- With the 2020 elections right around the corner, it’s time to study up and get involved at the local, state and federal level. Being involved in our democracy at all levels is your right, so use that vote and make your voice heard! Bonus points if you can get friends, family, and coworkers involved and active too! Check your voter registration status here.
10. Eat local, seasonal and lower down the food chain for a smaller impact on the planet. A great way to reduce your carbon footprint is to eat more plants; if they are local and seasonal that’s even better! Veganuary is a great way to test the waters and incorporate more whole foods onto your plate. With recipes, eating out/shopping guides and an online community for support and to answer any questions you may have, it’s a recipe for success!
-Jenna Lozano, 350 Colorado Intern