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5 Ways to Live a Sustainable Life.

Our everyday lives and our choices are critical to the environment, climate change, and future generations. For example, what we eat, drink, clothing, and the number of kids we choose to have has a significant effect on the environment.

Mostly, the conscious and deliberate effort you make now about how to shop, limit water usage, and travel is a matter of life to every living thing on the planet, including animals and plants. It is all about living sustainably, and here is how.

Recycling bins in South Korea.
Yoo Na in Prime Minister and I (2013).

1. Reuse and Recycle More Than Ever Before
While the current consumerism culture is all about shopping, and more shopping, you can break the cycle by reducing, reusing, and recycling most stuff you use. Again everything we purchase has a substantial environmental footprint. And so, before you make that purchase, ask yourself whether it is necessary.

Think of those massive, heavily advertised baby products that take years to decompose. Then, of course, choose only eco-friendly baby products, most of which you can reuse and recycle.

Most environmentally-conscious companies and individuals are now boycotting any product that endangers the soil or even wildlife, and it would be good to take the cue. The good news is that you do not even have to buy some of these products. Instead, you can DIY some of the stuff you use at home.

2. Use Less Energy to Reduce Carbon Emissions
Carbon emissions have a destructive effect on the environment, and it takes a conscious and strong mind to break the pattern. So how do you do it? To start, be sure to turn off appliances when not in use. Minimize their use, and turn down all heating as much as you can.

Generally, keeping your home green at every turn, including maintaining your home and car, improves energy use and efficiency. Once you opt for those energy-saving lights, you will be a step ahead in reducing the harm. And lastly, the more outdoors you get, the more your home becomes energy efficient too.
Jung Hae in for Volvo Korea.

3. Changing Your Driving Habits
Even though driving has become essential in the modern world, you can limit your trips or use a more friendly means of transport to reduce the carbon footprint. Let’s say, whenever possible, walk or bike. These car-free days are hugely beneficial to your budget, health, and environment.

There are several other ways to reduce your car use even when you have to travel longer distances. Those mass transit services such as bus or train systems available in your location are a perfect option. You can even opt for carpool or vanpool services, and that will be way better than if you were to use your car daily.

4. Check the Product Certification Before You Buy 
Now, most echo products coming from all corners of the globe have fair-trade certification. So, whenever you pick your coffee, tea, or fruit, check if the product has that label. It is an indication that it has been produced using sustainable farming methods.

But doing so also means doing loads of good, not just to the environment but to the local farmers, knowing that they have had the proper compensation for their sweat. While buying organic products may be a bit costlier, the accompanying benefits surpass your money concerns.

Organic means the farms, water, and final products are free from those harmful pesticides. Everything you consume is now clean, and you do not have to worry about its negative impact on your health.

One of the many tote bags worn by Gong Hyo Jin in The Master's Sun (2013).

5. Go as Plastic-Free as You Can
Plastic is virtually everywhere, and eliminating it hasn’t been so easy. Massive amounts of it have found a home on the world’s water mass, causing massive harm to aquatic life. Still, you can make a personal effort to keep off plastics and eventually cut off the waste with reusable shopping bags and water bottles.

You can always ditch any product wrapped with plastic, and if possible, purchase unwrapped goods at your local grocery store. While you may think your action is insignificant, it just takes your single action to change the world and save future generations.

Living a sustainable life will require some lifestyle adjustments on your part. These might be challenging to adapt initially, but once you get used to them, life becomes even more fulfilling. If you haven’t yet joined the movement, why not start today to enjoy sustainability.

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