Top 12 Sustainable New Year's Resolutions

    Top 12 Sustainable New Year's Resolutions

    Jan. 2, 2019

    Ask an Expert: Top 12 Sustainable New Year’s Resolutions

    To make 2019 a great new year, challenge yourself to try these simple lifestyle changes each month. Each aspect of sustainable living presented is not only good for the environment, but good for your health and wallet as well. Whether it is dusting off your bike, exploring vermicomposting or simply changing a light bulb, each small change you make will have lasting impacts. Consider these month-by-month tips.Rocks


    January: Lose paper weight this year. Go paperless with your bills and unsubscribe from junk mail through Direct Marketing Association’s Mail Preference Service at dmachoice.org.

    February: Be a cool Valentine. Save on your heating bill and turn your thermostat down while your house is empty during the day. See if you can sleep better with the thermostat down a few degrees at night as well. For other energy saving tips, visit extensionsustainability.usu.edu/energy.

    March: Start your (natural) spring cleaning. Make your own cleaning products to minimize toxin exposure, save money and be healthy. Visit uaex.edu/Other_Areas/publications/PDF/MP492.pdf for tips and recipes.

    April: Let rain showers water your flowers. Build garden swales instead of mounds to capture natural water flow. Find pictures, explanations and books on how to do it atharvestingrainwater.com/.

    May: Be bright with LED and natural light. Switch the light bulbs in your home to more efficient LED lights and use natural light to brighten your home and office. Energy tips can be found at extensionsustainability.usu.edu/energy.

    June: Avoid June bugs with natural pest control. Create your own garlic and dish detergent mixture for aphids, or experiment with other natural pest control recipes to improve your family’s health and your landscape. Visit eartheasy.com/grow_nat_pest_cntrl.htm for tips on natural pest control.

    July: Beat the heat with a native garden. Plant drought and heat-tolerant native edibles and ornamentals this year to add natural Utah beauty to your landscape. Browse extension.usu.edu/htm/horticulture for helpful information.

    August: Be thrift chic. Prepare your “new” work or school wardrobe with a visit to your local thrift store. While there, drop off clothes you no longer wear to keep the cycle going. Learn more about how to give clothes a second chance at usuextensionsustainability.blogspot.com/2013/05/give-clothes-second-chance.html.

    September: Head back to school or work with alternative transportation. Opt to bike, walk or ride the bus as your primary mode of daily transportation. Find out more by viewing the fact sheet at extensionsustainability.usu.edu/air.

    October: Happy Halloworms! Start your own household vermicompost system with red wigglers, a container, bedding, dirt, moisture and your daily food scraps. See Extension’s vermicomposting fact sheet at extensionsustainability.usu.edu/land/.

    November: Give thanks through local giving! Sign up for a community-supported agriculture program, and buy a Thanksgiving meal from local sources to reduce your family’s food print (the carbon footprint associated with how the food was produced and the miles it has traveled between production and consumption). Find out more about the local food movement atextensionsustainability.usu.edu/food.

    December: Give more while consuming less. Reuse newspaper and other paper scraps to make homemade upcycled (converting used materials into new items) gifts for friends and family. Opt to draw names with family and friends to reduce the quantity and increase the quality of gifts. Host creative craft nights with friends and catch up while repurposing products that are typically thrown away. See Extension’s “Reuse” fact sheet atextension.usu.edu/files/publications/publication/Sustainability_2012_11pr.pdf .

    For more information on sustainability, visit https://extensionsustainability.usu.edu. Like us on Facebook for daily inspiration, and to learn more about how to incorporate sustainability into your life.

    By: Roslynn Brain, USU Extension sustainable communities specialist, roslynn.brain@usu.edu, 435-797-5116, and Paige Gardner, former USU Extension sustainability

    Published on: Jan 02, 2019

    Related Articles

    Mindful Eating for the Holidays and Beyond

    Mindful Eating for the Holidays and Beyond

    Busy schedules and food-centered activities during the holidays can all add up to eating when you're not hungry, making less nutritious food choices and overeating. It is important to pay attention to the process of eating. Be mindful of what and why you eat. Eat for nourishment and satisfaction, and notice how your body feels. Consider these nine tips to help you get through the many food-focused holiday events.

    Read More
    Six Tips for Safe Turkey Preparation

    Six Tips for Safe Turkey Preparation

    Because of the number of turkeys prepared this time of year, food-borne illness increases during the holidays. If not prepared properly, turkey and all poultry can carry Salmonella, a common type of bacteria that can cause food-borne illness. Consider these tips for preparing a safe and tasty turkey this year.

    Read More
    March Is National Nutrition Month - Make Healthy Lifestyle Goals

    March Is National Nutrition Month - Make Healthy Lifestyle Goals

    The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics designates March as National Nutrition Month. It is a great time to focus on the basics of a healthy diet and set goals to be healthier. It is important to keep in mind that a healthy lifestyle doesn't happen overnight. If you pick one or two goals to work on now, you can focus on them for several months. Then, when you feel you have mastered those goals, you can select one or two more to work on.

    Read More