BUY less stuff - The Years Project

BUY less stuff

By The YEARS Project

All the objects we use in our day-to-day lives, things like our phones, clothes, books and furniture, have an embodied cost to the environment. One of those costs is an item’s carbon footprint, which represents the energy that went into producing materials, manufacturing the item, and shipping it from place to place. That energy was probably produced by burning fossil fuels, which in turn contributes to climate change. So, until manufacturing is powered by renewable energy sources like wind and solar, buying fewer things is a good way to fight global warming. Here are some ways to cut down on this secondary carbon footprint:

1. Skip disposable packaging when you can. Using a refillable water bottle or coffee cup not only saves energy, it also cuts down on garbage.

2. Embrace bartering and hand-me-downs. In the internet era, swapping instead of shopping is easier than ever.  Check out the new app Stuffstr to help you swap or donate.

3. Shop secondhand. Your local thrift store and the internet are great ways to sell and buy.

4. Fix what you already have. Spending a little extra time to mend clothing or taking an appliance to be fixed can have a big impact on the environment.

We know it might sound like we’re telling you to not have any fun, but consider this: a number of psychology studies have shown that spending money on experiences makes people feel better than spending money on stuff. So reducing your environmental impact might just make you happier!