How To Be Environmentally Conscience in an Apartment
Living green is about changing daily habits, so think of it this way: keep it simple, and get back to the basics. Decluttering feels great, but don’t just think of it as putting papers away or getting rid of a couple of pairs of pants. Buy too many bananas and you can’t eat them all? See if the neighbor could use them. Got some old, fraying towels that are too shabby to give to Good Will? Take them to your local animal shelter, or see if the local rescue mission accepts textile donations.
Next on the list is to reduce chemical use. Cleaning products can get expensive, and for what? We’ve gotten so used to thinking that the chemical smell equals “clean” that we often overlook the household items that do as good — or better — a job. Some good old fashioned baking soda helps reduce odors and can offer slight abrasion for stain removal. Vinegar works great on so many things, even on mold and mildew. Don’t like the vinegar smell? Dilute with some water, add lemon juice or your favorite essential oils. Wash out an old spray bottle and you’ve now got an all-natural product in a repurposed container. If you still want to buy your cleaning products rather than make them, look for words like, “chemical-free” and “biodegradable.”
Reducing chemicals isn’t limited to cleaners, though. Synthetic fabrics, like your rugs, chair cushions, and bedding often release unhealthy chemicals into the air. Houseplants take in carbon dioxide and return oxygen to the air, but they also absorb toxic chemicals and release harmless by-products. Remember to choose indoor-friendly plants that are easy to maintain. Keep an herb garden. It’ll help you eat cleaner while helping to filter the air! The general rule of thumb about keeping plants is to have two plants per 100 square feet.
Avoid making your heater and air conditioner do more work than they have to. Window treatments are a great eco-friendly apartment living tip, as they can block out drafts while also keeping heat inside. Close vents in rooms you’re not in, limit the use of your major appliances, and opt for opening a curtain rather than flipping on a light. Surge protectors are a great way to prevent power spikes but they also allow you to turn off several things at once if used with a point-of-use power strip. Combine these specific Brooklyn eco-friendly apartment living tips with a few other things, such as using CFL light bulbs and avoiding plastic water bottles, and you’ll surely see the savings.
Here in Brooklyn, there’s so much more you can do to help the environment than just walking, riding your bike, and using public transportation. Even by following just a couple of these Brooklyn eco-friendly apartment living tips, you can turn your great life into a green life.