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(BPT) - While daily DIY hacks for a more sustainable lifestyle are increasingly popular, consumers are also interested in more meaningful, long-term ways they can make a difference in protecting our planet. One key way to make a lasting impact is investing in a sustainable home, from energy-saving laundry appliances to composting for less food waste. Check out these five tips for long-term eco-friendly living.
1. Lightbulb moment – investing in energy-efficiency.
Turning lights off as you leave the room and unplugging unused electronics are quick tips to reduce your energy usage, but long-term investments in energy-efficient appliances are the most valuable in creating a more sustainable home. The best appliances to purchase are those with the ENERGY STAR® label, which signifies the most efficient options on the market. For example, Bosch compact laundry pairs feature dryers with heat pump drying technology, a ventless, sustainable drying solution that was awarded the ENERGY STAR Most Efficient Mark in 2022.
2. Turn up the heat on sustainable cooking.
Choosing quality, energy-saving cooking appliances is crucial to reduce your carbon footprint. Eco-friendly wall ovens and induction cooktops are a great first step in more sustainable cooking over time. Induction cooking uses electromagnetic energy to heat pots and pans directly. In comparison, gas and electric cooktops heat indirectly, using a burner or other heating element to pass radiant energy to your food. Induction cooking is a more efficient way to cook and reduces the amount of heat that is expelled into the home. Some ovens offer eco-friendly features as well, like Bosch wall ovens with EcoChef technology. This feature uses residual heat in the cavity to complete the cooking process, ultimately saving energy while still delivering optimal cooking results.
3. Water smart by design.
One of the simplest ways to conserve water is to invest in appliances that do it for you. Washers and dishwashers are two appliances that can utilize a significant amount of water and energy if they are not designed to conserve both. Once again, make sure to select appliances with ENERGY STAR certifications and thoughtful design that will intuitively allow you to save more water. According to the EPA, an ENERGY STAR certified dishwasher costs about $35 per year to run and can save you an average 3,870 gallons of water over its lifetime, compared to a standard dishwasher.
4. A backyard party – composting in your home garden.
Try taking an eco-friendly approach to grocery shopping by planting your own garden with fresh fruits and vegetables to use during mealtime. In addition, composting can be a great way to maximize your backyard nursery and continue to cultivate a more sustainable lifestyle. For avid backyard gardeners and eco-enthusiasts alike, composting is an easy, effective way to reduce the amount of carbon emissions from our household waste bins. According to the EPA, food scraps and yard waste together comprise over 30% of household waste, but these could be composted instead. Making compost keeps this waste out of landfills, where they’d otherwise take up space and release harmful greenhouse gases.
To compost, select a dry, shady spot for your compost bin. Add brown and green materials, moistening dry materials as they are collected. Mix grass clippings and green waste into the pile and bury fruit and vegetable waste about 10 inches under compost material. When the material at the bottom is dark and rich in color (as early as two months), your compost is ready to use.
5. Keeping it fresh – reducing food waste.
Recent Bosch research found that Americans toss 103 pounds of spoiled food per year — that’s roughly $3,000 wasted annually! The solution to less food waste? A refrigerator with purposeful organization and storage functions. Sixty-one percent of people believe that owning a fridge with more useful storage capabilities would contribute to less food waste overall, keeping their groceries fresher for longer. The Bosch French door bottom mount refrigerator is a great option, equipped with freshness technologies to extend the life of your groceries, from customizable humidity and temperature drawers to rearrangeable shelving.