The holiday season is officially behind us, so it’s time to start focusing on your own goals for 2023! You might have noticed just how much waste is created during the holidays, and if that’s inspiring you do to something about it, then you came to the right place. Whether you want to finally start your year by reducing clutter and incorporating a few more sustainable choices, or if you’re ready to begin your zero waste journey, there’s no better time than now to begin!
We created a list of ways that you can start the New Year with sustainability, and how these simple habits can help you lead a more eco-friendly lifestyle in 2023 and beyond.
Happier & Healthier Lifestyle
Creating a happier and healthier you is a goal we should all strive to achieve, but figuring out where to start can be tricky! Did you know that adopting a greener lifestyle can help boost your happiness, according to the World Economic Forum? Here are a few ways you can take environmentally-friendly action each day:
- Use public transportation, walk, or bike: Not only is using public transportation, walking, or biking better for the environment, it's also good for your health. These forms of transportation can help you get more physical activity and reduce your carbon footprint.
- Reduce your meat consumption: If you're not ready to go fully plant-based, consider reducing your meat consumption. Not only is meat production a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, but it can also be expensive. Try incorporating more plant-based proteins into your diet, such as beans, lentils, and nuts!
- Upgrade your morning routine with safe, non-toxic cleaning product or start supporting businesses that work to end single-use plastic. For a list of our favorite ways to make your morning routine better for the planet, see our other blog.
- Shop locally and seasonally: Buying locally grown and seasonal produce not only supports local farmers, but it also reduces the environmental impact of transportation! Plus, local and seasonal produce is often fresher and tastier.
- Say goodbye to single-use plastic: Single-use plastics are a major contributor to pollution and waste. By using reusable bags, containers, and water bottles, you can reduce your environmental impact and save money in the long run. Here are our top picks for refillable and reusable water bottles that you can get today.
- Educate yourself and others: The more you learn about sustainability and the steps you can take to live a healthier and more environmentally-friendly lifestyle, the more impact you can have. Share your knowledge with friends and family and encourage them to make sustainable choices as well!
It’s no secret that smaller changes over time can have a huge impact on our planet. By incorporating these tips above, you can be part of the change that is working towards a greener future for everyone. Don’t believe us? Let’s get into the data:
- New research from scientists at NASA, Duke University, and Columbia University shows that if we were to reduce global emissions for the next 50 years and keep global warming under 2 degrees Celsius for the rest of this century, we could help prevent 4.5 million deaths, 1.4 million hospitalizations, and even 300 million lost workdays!
- Less than 5% of all plastic is recycled today, which means most of it ends up in our landfills and waterways. And according to Surfers Against Sewage, it’s estimated that at last 8 million pieces of plastic are entering our oceans every single day. This type of plastic waste lingers in the water, ultimately damaging marine ecosystems and the animals that live within them. By refusing to purchase plastic, you can help remove it from the environment completely!
- One major principle of going zero waste is by having zero food waste, too. By cooking appropriate portions of food and only buying what you truly need, you can make sure that food does not go bad in your fridge – this helps you save money in the long run, too!
Saving Money with Zero Waste Habits
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, zero waste goes far beyond recycling and composting. Instead, it essentially refers to a goal of sending no waste to the landfill, incinerators, and the ocean – but living a zero-waste lifestyle has taken on various meanings over the years.
While some believe that going zero waste means spending more money on sustainable alternatives, this couldn’t be further from the truth! Adopting a less wasteful lifestyle can actually save you time and money in the long run – and here are just a few situations in which the zero waste option is actually cheaper than its single-use counterpart!
- Paper Products: By replacing one-use paper towel rolls with rags from old t-shirts and cloths you have lying around, you can save over $100 per year!
- Cleaning Products: The average American household spent more than $178 dollars on cleaning products alone in 2021. Why not save yourself some money, and limit your exposure to harsh chemicals by making your own natural cleaning products? If you’re short on time, you can also save money and avoid single-use plastic by refilling any container you have at home with a non-toxic cleaning product found at one of the many Good Filling Stations, the first self-service refill stations in the U.S.! Don’t have time to refll but want to support brands who put the planet first? View our online store here.
- Coffee: Although large chain coffee shops will promote “eco-friendly” cups, most single-use coffee cups are not recyclable. The paper cups that we see at shops like Starbucks are actually lined with plastic – and we waste 50 billion of these cups per year in the U.S. So what’s the solution? Find one of the Good Filling Hydration Stations around town and fill up your own cup or container with Sail Away’s cold brew, and three other unique flavors of coffee and tea! The coffee you can refill at a Hydration Station will cost you 40% less than the same drink you’d get at Starbucks. Find a Good Filling Station near you here.
Our Top Sustainable Product Picks
As concerns about the environment continue to grow, more and more people are looking for ways to live sustainably. One way to do this is to switch to products that are better for the environment! Here are a few easy swaps you can make this year:
- Reusable grocery bags: Single-use plastic grocery bags are another major source of pollution and waste. By switching to reusable grocery bags, you can reduce your environmental impact and save money on bags. Look for bags made from sustainable materials, such as cotton or hemp.
- Reusable menstrual products: Single-use menstrual products, such as pads and tampons, generate a significant amount of waste. By switching to reusable menstrual products, such as cloth pads or a menstrual cup, you can reduce your environmental impact and save money in the long run.
- Toothpaste tablets: According to AsYouSow.org, an estimated 400 million toothpaste tubes are discarded every year in the U.S., and at least 1.5 billion globally! Even if you don't care about the environmental impact of your personal hygiene products, saving money on buying a new tube of Crest can also be incentive enough for making this switch.
Introducing our Hydration (Refill) Station
Good Filling CEO Petros Palandjian and team member Jess show you how to refill coffee at the brand-new Hydration Station.
For many Americans, starting a morning with a cup of hot coffee is non-negotiable. People all over the world love coffee so much that people in the U.S. drink 146 billion cups of coffee each year. Unfortunately, the coffee we get at coffee shops or cafes needs to be put in something and most times it’s a plastic cup. We order our latte, pick up a disposable sleeve, sip for a few minutes, then toss the cup right in the garbage–all in the name of convenience.
To us, the simplest solution to tackling our coffee waste issue (aside from supporting local) is by taking single-use plastic out of the equation. With Good Filling Hydration Stations, we’re proud to introduce a new way to refill your coffee and tea. In partnership with Blue Crew Coffee, Good Filling is installing self-service refilling stations of delicious cold brew and tea. It’s never been more convenient to have premium drinks while doing your part for the planet!
If you can’t get to one of our new Hydration Stations to fill up your coffee, the next best thing you can do is support another local business. Here’s our list of five sustainable coffee shops and cafes in Boston.
About Good Filling Company
Good Filling runs and operates automated refill machines for home-care, personal-care and beverage products, offering homes an accessible and affordable way to help the planet. Our Good Filling Stations allow consumers to reuse their own containers to prevent plastics from entering the waste stream.
With Stations across the United States, and many more on their way, we’re bringing convenience to the zero-waste movement. To learn more about Good Filling Stations and to find one near you, click here.