Daily Habits That Are Damaging The Planet

By Aaron Love 10 months ago

Driving Your Car

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This one is one of the most well-known reasons behind humans causing the natural environment of the world to be ruined. I mean, in the US alone there are nearly 300 million vehicles around the nation so I dread to think how many are around the whole world! All of the fumes that are released from our motor vehicles are well-known to be affecting the earth and our carbon footprint as a collective earth is actually quite horrific. If you wanted to watch how your habits are damaging the earth then start car-pooling or using electric substitutes.

Watching The TV

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Like many of the current generation, you might find yourselves spending hours and hours in front of your screens; this could be the use of your TV, your laptop or your games console! You can probably see where I'm going with this one can't you? On average, we spend around 10 hours a day in front of some form of screen an this requires a huge amount of electricity, which not only harms the planet but it can also destory our bank accounts beyond belief. There's only one way you can really combat this though, and that's to turn your screens off a little more!

Battery Disposal

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You've probably seen those little battery bins around your local area, they tend to be found in and around supermarkets and there are also a few places you'll find online that are dedicated to collecting the used batteries. Please make sure you only dispose of your batteries in this way! If not, you are adding to the many problems humans are causing to the environment as the batteries contain some toxic chemicals like mercury that, when they leak, are extremely dangerous to the biodiversity both on and off of the land around you.

Using Too Much Plastic

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You probably notice that a massive percentage of the products and devices you buy from your local superstores come wrapped in an unnecessary amount of plastic. This is something that companies are trying to begin cutting out as a number of restrictions are beginning to be set, but it might be too late for that! If you didn't already know (you might have been living underground or something!), plastic is a major pollutant to the earth's environment, and plastics take way too long to decompose causing a huge buildup.

Ink Disposal

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Just like when it comes to disposing your batteries, you have to be incredibly careful with how and where you get rid of your used ink cartridges. Most companies that sell the cartridges will offer you a service or package as to how to correctly get ride of them, typically you send them back to the parent company via the mail. Despite this, millions and millions of ink cartridges are chucked in to normal bins and the toxic chemicals within them are destroying animal cycles and the soil around the landfills.

Eating Meat

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Okay, I'll be the first one to admit that I absolutely love, LOVE a steak as a late night meal, and there are loads of meats I regularly use. However, animals, particularly cows are well-known producers of Methane (I'm sure you heard this in school at some point) which helps to keep heat within the earth's atmosphere. Now, although we'd all love the temperature to be high all the time, it can be very dangerous when it comes to the global climate. And the constant need for more meat supply means we're introducing more methane into the atmosphere.

Using Loads Of Paper

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Paper is something we probably don't think about as an item or product that could be dangerous to the environment, it seems pretty harmless when you think about it doesn't it? I mean, think about all of the different uses we have for paper in our daily lives. You might still be old-fashioned and prefer to get your news in a physical form, you might work in an office printing and writing all day. Or the most popular use would be as toilet paper or kitchen roll which we go through like there's no tomorrow. All the deforestation is devastating.

Online Shopping

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Online shopping has become the most popular way for most people to get their goods all year round and this gets even worse around festive seasons like Christmas. The problem is that these companies are reaching the furthest out places of the world meaning that the products are travelling via plane, ships and cars in order to reach their target. You'll realise this means that a load of emissions are released and the plastic becomes overwhelming, especially when its coupled with them being disposed of incorrectly.

Going To The Toilet

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Okay, I know, there isn't really many alternatives available to flushing your toilet, most of us live in houses or apartments where are only option is to use the toilet given to us, but it turns out this is very inefficient. The best way to combat this is via the installation of lower flushing toilets or compost toilets although these can be expensive and they're not always readily available. So no, please don't stop flushing your toilet, you'll only make your place stink to the high heavens, but consider trying to reduce your flushes or get your hands on one of the alternatives.

Using Lumpy Face Washes

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Okay, so I'm not suggesting you stop washing your face from now on, that would probably cause you to struggle more in life than anything else! The problem however comes when you choose to use the face washes (and there's so many of them!) that contain those little annoying micro-beads. Although it might do wonders for your skin, one thing it doesn't do wonders for is the environement! Unfortunately, they get thrust in to the ocean and have become very harmful to the ecosystems within the ocean. What scrubs our face also scrubs the inside of our ocean friends.

Wasting Our Food

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First things first, I apologise for making you look stare at those maggots up there, it's probably not what you want to see at anytime of the day! Before discussing how food waste is bad for the earth, you also have to think morally, you're wasting good food that people around the world would sell anything for so think about them too! But yes, so much work goes in to ensuring your food is of a high quality, including all of the fumes forced out in to the world when during its creation as well as the process of transporting it all of the countries in the world.

Fast Fashion

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Not only do you need to be careful about your online shopping with companies like Amazon, you should probably stop buying all your clothes using online fast-fashion sites like ASOS and Shein if you want to help look after the planet. It turns out that around 10% of emissions from around the globe actually come as a result of the fast-fashion industry. And the thing is, most of these sites don't even offer high quality clothing! You're probably looking more at wearing something once and never deciding to put it on again! A waste!

Random Consumerism

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We are all guilty of buying things we really don't need and that's basically what the term consumerism really means. How many times have you been to the shop for some essentials but came back with something random that's sole purpose is to entertain you. I'm talking buying new video games or other random products. Think about it, you can buy almost anything, anywhere these days! Now put that into perspective, think about how much energy, how any fossil fuels are burned and how much travel will affect the planet during its creation process.

Boiling Water!

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If you're one of the many people that use gas in order to heat their showers or boil their water for any use then you're one of the good guys (well, supposedly anyway!). It turns out that by using electricity to boil our water we are being very inefficient, both when it comes to our own bank accounts but also when it comes to how damaging we are being to our planet. In order to generate all this energy we have to burn through a lot of coal or diesel (in most places) which is obviously doing more harm than good in terms of the health of the earth.

Brushing Our Teeth

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Like some of the other issues to arise in this list, brushing our teeth is quite an important thing, we want to keep our mouths feeling fresh and avoid our teeth going yellow. Fortunately, toothpaste isn't the problem when it comes to the brushing process being damaging to the earth, instead its the bad habits that many of us have developed instead. For example, (and I am definitely responsible for this) many people actually leave the tap running for the entirety of the time they're brushing which, as you can imagine, is a huge waste of water.

Throwing Away Items That Are Fine

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A lot of products made today are purposely made to last for long periods of time, this way the company gets a good name and you should get what you're looking for out of the products. And even if you don't like the product you've bought, someone else out there will probably be able to do you a favour and take it off your hands. Whatever you do, don't just decide to throw out something that someone else will be able to use, you're doing yourself, other people and the planet no good by choosing to clutter landfills with perfectly viable products!

Using Single Use Products

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Let's be honest, foil and plastic wrap can be very useful items, especially when it comes to sorting out our lunches for work or for the kids at school! However, the downfall to these products, as the title suggests, is that we only get one use out of them before we have to chuck them in the trash. There are loads of products now available on the market for you to turn to an alternative, for example silicon bags or reusable plastic lunchboxes. These are still made of plastic yes, but you'll be able to use them on repeat for the foreseeable.

Refusing To Recycle

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Recycling has been nailed in to us for decades now, seemingly more and more each year, to the point where you can now be fined or even charged for not recycling when you're supposed to. How often have you chosen to not put your recyclable rubbish in to the normal trash can? If so, you are part of the problem that has been taking over the planet. Landfill workers are constantly coming across plastic and glass at their sites that could have been recycled and re-used instead of being left to rot and help destroy the environment.

Bottled Water

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Yes, we're back talking about the earth's arch-enemy plastic again! We've long been told that buying bottled water is a stupid idea, and in countries like us here in the US realistically they're talking sense. These bottles can take nearly 500 years to degrade (that's basically 5 generations!) causing endless damage to our planet! Instead, people have since been turning to using reusable and refillable water bottles, made by thousands and thousands of companies around the world in order to lower the need and demand for plastic water bottles.

Using Pesticides

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For those of you who are really keen on your gardening and keeping your lawns looking top notch, weeds can be a real hassle, and they can take quite a long period of time to manage to get rid of them. And for some of us, the quickest and most efficient way for us to rid our gardens of weeds is by using pesticides or weed killers. The problem is, these weed killers are actually likely to do more harm to the garden and yourself than they will any good. There are a whole range of natural ways to kill weeds so try them instead.

Not Turning Off Your Plugs

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This is something that people really don't think about as being a problem to the environment and it can also creep up on you in terms of your cash, you don't realise how much dormant electronics can rack up your bills! And the thing is, this is one of the easiest things for you to avoid and change when it comes to helping the environment. Just make sure to turn your plugs off whilst you're out the house or whilst you're not using them. It's as simple as that! I'm sure this is something you can start adapting too right?

Using Old Lightbulbs

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When you move in to your new homes these days you'll find that they tend to come with bright LED lights and this is because they are the best in terms of efficiency. This means they'll last the longest (as long as you don't buy cheap brands) and they'll probably appear brighter than most other lights. One thing you definitely shouldn't do however, is use the incandescent bulbs like the one you can see pictured above. The problem is that they actually waste a huge amount of their energy as heat instead of light!

Printing Single-Sided!

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If you can't already tell, deforestation and the use of paper is actually one of the biggest contributors to the ruining of our earth. If you work in an office (this could be a home office) and you're regularly printing off documents then you should consider printing double-sided instead of having a separate sheet for each individual thing. It might look less professional but its worthwhile. In fact, there's plenty of options like scanning documents etc that means the whole process of printing is actually kind of obsolete in this day and age.

Using Period Products

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I'm obviously not talking from experience here, but being on your period is evidently a very uncomfortable feeling for woman around the world. And typically, woman will have periods every month for between 30 and 40 years (some have them for longer and some have them for less!). And yes, these products are necessary, but they actually contain a huge amount of plastic and tampons, like plastic bottles, can take hundreds of years to degrade. Instead, if its realistic, you should try and get your hands on menstrual cups or period pants.

Not Turning Off Your Lights

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This is one of those habits that your parent will have tried to drill in to you when you were younger, although most of us probably weren't the best at sticking to these rules. But it turns out they were always on to something as just turning your lights off when you're not using them can actually save so much energy. If you're a culprit to regularly leaving your lights on maybe try and leave some little notes around the house to remind you to keep your lights off. You'll probably notice your bills shoot down rapidly once you start!

Not Filling Your Washing Machine

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Sometimes we really need a particular piece of clothing to be washed as soon as possible, so we choose to throw a light load in to get it done quickly. However, it would be much better for the planet (and your electricity bill) if you chose to make sure you weren't half filling your machines. Although it might feel as though you're helping yourself, realistically all you're doing is wasting gallons upon gallons of water. This might mean you have to wait longer between your washes, especially if you live alone, maybe you can double wear?

Not Filling The Dishwasher

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So this basically follows the exact same principles as the washing machine issue. You should always be trying to ensure that you're turning on your dishwasher ONLY after you've filled or nearly filled the dishwasher to capacity. Again, you'll only be wasting water by the gallon again, and unlike washing machines you have  a quicker more efficient way to wash dishes by using some washing-up liquid in your sink. It'll stop you using all of that water and you'll also be able to use the products again in a much quicker and easier way.

Throwing Away Electronics

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Electronic waste is actually becoming an increasingly more dangerous problem around the world, especially as the technology continues to advance in order to meet the public demand! You might not realise that a lot of the electronic equipment you might be binning contains a load of recyclable equipment that could 100% be re-used in order to begin the process of creating further equipment in the future. I'm talking copper, silver and gold particularly, so have a search online and see if you can find a local electronic recycling center.

Bills And Receipts

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A lot of us still get our bills in the mail, which is weird because getting a clutter of mail in to our boxes can actually get incredibly infuriating. Like most things now, you can actually choose to get your bills via your e-mails instead which helps tackle the deforestation issue. It isn't just bills either, you can also choose to get your receipts via your emails too and unless you plan to claim back your expenses you probably don't even need a receipt in the first place. So yeah, maybe consider avoiding receipts and choosing to get your bills online!

Plane Travel

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Unsurprisingly, when you know driving your car is a big problem when it comes to the environment, aero-travel is just as bad if not worse! This works in the same way as cars as we're constantly burning an endless amount of fuel as a load of people are commuting on business trips or maybe just heading out on their holidays. Let's be honest, there's thousands of flights heading out from airports around the world everyday. Unfortunately, there's very little you can do in terms of commuting if your job demands you're somewhere else!