Sustainable living can feel a little daunting if you're new to it, but don't be discouraged. You can make a big difference with a few simple changes. We have a few packing suggestions to help you get started. Pack these 5 eco-friendly items in your bag every day to make better environmental choices.
1. Reusable tote for groceries
The next time you go grocery shopping at a chain grocery store, ask for a compact reusable tote bag or two at checkout. One will probably cost you a dollar or two and can easily be stored in your purse, backpack or satchel. It's a great item to take with you everyday because you never know when you might need to make a grocery run. It will last you years and will help you reduce your plastic use dramatically. You can use a bag like this for toting more than just groceries, too!
2. Biodegradable soap or hand sanitizer
It's pretty likely that you use public washrooms frequently. If we're right about that, toting a small container if biodegradable soap or hand sanitizer is a great idea. Most public bathrooms supply cheap and environmentally-unfriendly soap for users to wash up with. Instead of sending more of it down the drain, bring your own eco-friendly products with you. A small travel size container is all you need and won't take up much space in your bag.
3. Reusable coffee tumbler
If you like to go out for coffee or make your own, invest in a good quality reusable coffee tumbler. It's perfect if you like to brew your own cuppa and tote it to work, and can be handed to a barista if you like to buy your daily brew in lieu of a paper cup. Paper coffee cups don't seem too bad for the environment at first glance, but they're frequently lined with wax which makes them not recyclable.
4. Canteen or reusable water bottle
It's important to stay hydrated, so it's always a good plan to carry a canteen or reusable water bottle with you when you're on the go. They're easy to refill and can hold enough water for your journey if they're large. Don't be shy, ask a cafe or restaurant to refill it with tap water if you're running low. The important thing is to stop buying single-use plastic products like bottled water -- especially in Canada where clean drinking water is easy to come by.
5. Reusable food containers, cutlery, napkins and straw (for eating out)
Whether you make your own food to take to school or work, or like to buy it out, invest in some good quality reusable food containers, cutlery and napkins. You can even use them when you eat out at takeaway restaurants. Give clean and empty reusable containers to your server and ask to have your order packed inside them. It's better for the environment than any takeaway packaging they can give you. If you like to buy juices or smoothies out, bring a reusable straw and container to avoid single-use plastic.
We hope these 5 tips from BentallGreenOak inspire you to live more sustainably!
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