Fall is a time of change. With the cooler weather comes a move from t-shirts and flip-flops to sweaters and boots, the new school years brings new schedules, and the D.C. area sees a subtle shift in shade from Nats’ red to Skins’ burgundy and gold. As you watch the leaves change, take a few painless steps to alter some of your daily habits toward the “green” end of the spectrum.
- Meatless Mondays: Having pasta, salad, or a vegetarian soup on Mondays might not seem like a big deal, but choosing to go meat-free for one meal per week (for a family of four) has the same impact as driving a hybrid car (read more about the U.N.'s study here). Raising animals for food is a primary cause of land degradation, air pollution, water shortage, water pollution, loss of biodiversity, and not least of all, global warming. So cutting back, even one night per week, makes a big difference.
- Leave your Shoes by the Door: Think of removing your shoes when you enter a home as the equivalent of washing your hands. It couldn’t be easier, and takes no time at all. And it prevents the outside gunk like car exhaust, chemicals, and pesticides from being tracked all over your home.
- Refuse a Bag with Purchase or Bring Your Own: There are approximately 46,000 pieces of floating plastic in every 1 square mile of ocean (read more about it here). Help keep some of that trash out of the environment by choosing not to take a bag when you make a small purchase. Better yet, kick the plastic bag habit altogether by bringing your own re-usable bag to the store.