Climate change, global warming, pollution, deforestation and a host of other environmental challenges is the reality of the world we live in. If all of us take a conscious step towards safeguarding the environment, we may be able to contain the spread of this crisis, and protect at least a few of the natural resources around us. To contribute to reducing your personal impact on the environment, look towards your habits at home. Bring on your inner Captain Planet with these 10 easy ways to make your home more eco-friendly.
1. Cutting Back on paper towels is one of the ways to make your home more eco-friendly
The next time you see a stain on the counter, you don’t have to use the paper kitchen towel to wipe it down. Get used to using cloth napkins, especially in the kitchen, and help forests from being destroyed. It might be more time-consuming to clean cloth towels, but it’s certainly one of the ways to make your home more environmentally friendly.
2. Use energy efficient lighting to go green at home
When it comes to the lighting techniques for your home, try to use LED or CFL bulbs as much as possible. Although these are slightly more expensive than traditional light bulbs, 90% of the energy is given off as heat, which means it wears off faster. In Dubai, where we have to battle high temperatures for a good part of the year, the fact that these bulbs heat up the home, is another reason why we should invest in LED, CFL and Halogen Incandescents, all of which are good ways to make your home more eco-friendly.
3. Look out for low-energy appliances when you are upgrading
Did you know that our electrical appliances account for over 30% of our energy bills? You can easily embrace a more environment-friendly lifestyle by upgrading to more energy efficient appliances, including washing machines, refrigerators and more. Make sure to check with the staff when you are buying new appliances about the Energy Star Rating for them. Not only will you be helping with the going green initiatives at home, but you will also end up saving money on your energy bills.
4. Reduce Use of Plastic in the kitchen and help save the environment
Get rid of the many plastic containers at home and start using ceramics, glass and steel to store and cook your food. While you are at it, stop cooking in non-stick ware and return to traditional vessels made of steel, aluminium and cast iron. This is one of the ways to make your home eco-friendly that is also good for your overall health.
5. Repurpose and reuse old instead of buying new
In light of our suggestion above, before you run to the stores and buy a whole bunch of glass containers, look around and see if there are things you can repurpose. Empty coffee jars make excellent containers for spices and powders. Biscuit tins made of steel can be used for baking cakes. Similarly, before buying new furniture think of whether you have any eco-friendly ways to spruce up the house. Wooden doors, for instance, can make great coffee tables.
6. Watching your water use is one of the ways to make your home environment-friendly
Are you one of those people that keeps the water running while brushing your teeth? Do you keep the tap open while washing the dishes? One of the key things that go into how to make your home more sustainable and eco-friendly is reducing the wastage of water. So watch out for leaks and only use the water that is necessary. In this regard, it’s always better to opt for a shower instead of a bath as this can save a large amount of water.
7. Wash your clothes at 30°C and save electricity usage by 40%
Washing your clothes at a higher temperature means you are utilising far more energy than required. Unless you have to deal with heavy stains or muddy clothes, 30°C is the optimum temperature to wash your clothes and build a more sustainable home.
8. Invest in bamboo alternatives for furniture, kitchen equipment and storage
Were you aware that bamboo is one of the most eco-friendly products out there? It grows quickly under minimum supervision, making it the ideal material to use for furniture, bowls, plates and storage equipment. Buy products made of bamboo and incorporate more eco-friendly solutions for your home.
9. Insulate your homes and reduce your carbon footprint
Dubai is notorious for the warm, warm summers when the heat from outside can seep into your home and make things extremely uncomfortable. The next time you are moving home or buying property in Dubai, make sure to check if the walls have been insulated. This is one of the best eco-friendly house designs you can find in such hot climates, that will add a layer of defence and hence reduce the need to keep your home in sub-zero temperatures.
10. Switch off and unplug for an environment-friendly house
This one is something we should all be doing, not just as an environmentally friendly home idea, but also to avoid any major catastrophes and electric fire incidents. Once you finish charging the phone, learn to switch off the charger. Turn the lights off when you don’t need it. Basically, learn to unplug and switch off devices when you don’t use them to build an eco-friendly apartment or villa.
Now that you know of how to make your home more eco-friendly, why not take it a step further and incorporate some green walls in your home? Better still, recycle and do your bit to go green! If you buy a house in Dubai, check out how to install solar panels using DEWA’s Shams Initiative. Saving our environment is our collective responsibility and these small steps can go a long way in ensuring a greener, brighter future.
To live in a truly environment-friendly home, choose from one of the properties in The Sustainable City, one of the pioneering developments which are a part of UAE’s sustainability efforts.
Stay tuned to the best lifestyle and property blog in Dubai for more such insightful ideas to make your home more eco-friendly.