Reducing Your Carbon Footprint


Elizabeth Schwartzhoff, Staff Writer

Ever since Lil Dicky released his music video, “Earth”, around the same time as National Earth Day this year, it has made even more people aware of what is happening around us and on the earth. It is also becoming very popular to carry around reusable straws, cups, and utensils. Here’s your guide for affordable reusable objects and easy ways to help reduce your carbon footprint.

  1. Eat less meat: You don’t have to go vegetarian or vegan but having one or two days without meat will help the earth in the long run if everyone did this. According to, beef and lamb emit a lot methane gas, if you were to cut out beef, it would “cut 20% out of your carbon emissions”.
  2. Thrifting: Over the pass years, thrifting has become even more trendy and used than ever before, not only is it a fun activity, it helps because the environmental costs are essentially eliminated when being secondhand and “reduce, reuse, recycle” really is important.
  3. Switch to a white trash bag: Pigment in the black trash bags aren’t biodegradable and this means that it won’t break down, doing something as little as this will have a long-term effect on the earth and the environment.
  4. Carpool/walking/biking: If you were to walk or bike, this avoids carbon emissions but sometimes it is essential to have to drive your car, instead you could carpool with a friend or public transportation to help reduce the carbon dioxide.
  5. Turn off your lights: Everyone is guilty of forgetting to turn off your lights but it really does help even with such a simple action as this plus you save on electricity.

Now, here are a couple of cheap and environmentally friendly alternatives for everyday use:

  1. Reusable straws- On Amazon, there are a million different choices, they have your classic metal straws, they have retractable ones for easy storage, colorful ones, the choices are endless and they are very affordable, they range from about $5-$10.
  2. Grocery bags- Instead of going for those paper or plastic, remember to bring your own bag and some places give you five cents off just for having it. In the Mill Creek/Snohomish area, they don’t charge for bags but down near Seattle and many others, they do. In August of 2014, California was the first state to impose a statewide ban on plastic bags.
  3. Utensils- This is useful for places who use plastic utensils and these are very affordable, they can range from $8-$20 depending on what type. My personal favorite is bamboo utensils.
  4. Water bottle- Within these past couple of years, Hydro Flasks and Takeyas have become extremely popular and customizable with stickers that represent you. Instead of buying a case of plastic water bottles, it is better to invest in a $20-$40 water bottle that will keep your water cold and will last for many years.