By: Dina Usanovic
Earth Day recently passed by, and it made me wonder if there was a way for college students to be more sustainable. With textbooks and writing notes, there is often a lot of paper wasted. It is important for our generation, which will soon inherit the responsibility of caring for the world as older generations did, to consider how to improve our carbon footprints. Here are a few suggestions for how to improve your environment one step at a time:
Recycle: recycling is so important, especially for college students. Tons of paper can be wasted if students do not recycle it— entire notebooks and textbooks full of paper! Through the simple act of recycling, just one student can save tons of trees. You could also go a step further and try buying textbooks that are available in an ebook format and taking notes on a laptop.
Thrift Shopping: thrifting can be beneficial, especially on a college student’s budget. Not only does it save the environment by reducing waste, but it also saves the bank.
Meatless Mondays: if you are apprehensive about going entirely vegan or vegetarian to reduce your carbon footprint, meatless Mondays are a great place to start. By designating one day each week to be meat-free, you can dip your toe into veganism or vegetarianism and reduce your consumption of meat— which also has health benefits, including lowering cholesterol.
Reduce Plastic Use: by using reusable coffee cups or water bottles, you can significantly reduce your use of plastic, and, therefore, your waste. In fact, you could go a step further and invest in a reusable straw. Some people have even begun eliminating plastic from their house entirely by purchasing glass bottles of milk, juice, etc.
Limit Energy Use: significant energy use can increase carbon emissions significantly. To lower your energy consumption, unplug your electronics when you are not using them, and turn off all lights.
If students adopt even a few of these suggestions, the environment will be in much better shape. Don’t underestimate your impact on the world— every bit helps!