You probably know what it is to go green and the importance of doing so today, but as a busy student with a packed schedule, sometimes it can seem like you simply don’t have the free time and spare energy to devote to becoming more environmentally friendly. However, the good news is that if you want to start reducing your impact on the environment, there are plenty of small and easy changes that you can make to your daily life that will reduce your environmental impact while helping you to save money in the process. Here are some of the best ways to live a greener lifestyle as a student.
1. Study Online
If you’re in the process of going back to school and trying to decide which option would be best for you, then opting for an online degree program is almost always the greener option. Online students can study from home, meaning that there’s no commuting involved, so you won’t have to contribute to air pollution by driving your car to class every day. And, you can study from your laptop, meaning that you’ll use less electricity compared to sitting at a desktop PC in the college library. And when you’re studying from home, you’ll have more time to implement all those other green changes in your life, too. You can find a wide range of programs to study online at any level from bachelor’s degrees to advanced programs such as this RN to nurse educator course.
2. Take Notes Electronically
With the world going greener and understanding the importance of reducing paper waste, it’s now becoming more and more digitally focused, and your studies can too. Instead of taking your notepad and pen into class, you can take your notes electronically using your laptop, tablet or even your smartphone. If you prefer writing your notes down rather than typing them, a stylus with a tablet is a great alternative. Not only will you reduce your paper use dramatically, you’ll also find it much easier to store your notes electronically compared to carrying them around with you.
3. Use More Reusable Items
Consider the number of items that you use on a daily basis which could be swapped to a reusable alternative. For example, if you like to stay hydrated and drink a lot of water, you could get a Brita filter and a reusable water bottle, or take your bottle and make use of water filling stations around the campus, rather than purchasing one-time use plastic bottles. Plastic bags are also something that you can swap for reusable alternatives each time you go grocery shopping. And instead of getting plastic straws only to throw them away after you’ve had your drink, get a washable, reusable metal straw that you can easily pop in your bag to take out with you or opt for paper straws whenever they are available.
4. Buy More Second-Hand
As a student, buying everything brand new can quickly add up, and when you’re on a tight student budget, you might find yourself in financial difficulty or unable to purchase the things that you need or want. When you have to prioritize items such as textbooks or a uniform for your placement, it can be difficult to ensure that you are making your budget stretch to the things that you want for yourself too, like new clothes or furnishings for your home. The good news is that second-handand preloved items are certainly becoming more popular, with sites such as eBay, Facebook Marketplace and Depop a great place to start looking. Buying pre-loved items is especially a good idea when it comes to fashion as you can get some awesome bargains and won’t be contributing to the massive negative impact that fast fashion has on the environment. And if you want to furnish your home on a budget, there are plenty of ways in which you can repurpose and refurbish old, second-hand furniture items using a lick of paint or even by covering it in decorative wallpaper to make a unique look that you love.
5. Decrease Meat Consumption
Finally, the food that you eat isn’t just important for your health when you’re studying for a degree, but it can also have an impact on just how eco-friendly you are. If you’re not ready to go fully vegetarian or vegan just yet, simply reducing the amount of meat that you eat in any given day or week can have a bigger effect than you may realize.
These are just some easy ways for students to go green – which will you start doing first?