Tag Archives: living

How a Minimalist Lifestyle Can Add to Your Green Efforts

Shares

You may have seen the term “minimalism” being thrown around a lot lately, especially in the eco-friendly sphere. As more and more people have adopted minimalist lifestyles, the concept has begun to slowly creep to the forefront of our collective consciousness. But what exactly is minimalism? To be honest, it can be a little hard to pinpoint.

Minimalism means different things to different people — it’s unique to the person living it. The truth is, there’s no “one size fits all” to this approach. However, one thing that can be agreed upon is that living as a minimalist is far more earth-friendly than how the majority of Americans are currently getting by. Let’s take a closer look:

What Is Minimalism?

Ranging from apartment-dwelling urbanites to country homesteaders, minimalists come from vast walks of life. They might be single or have a large family, have a house full of treasured items or live out of a backpack. The common ground lies in the opposition to the American ideal of working more to make more, and spending more to have more.

The true essence of minimalism is determining what provides you the most value in life and removing everything that is simply excess. It’s a very intentional way of living that gives rise to positive changes in almost all aspects of life. Being a minimalist means choosing to live your life with great purpose.

Curbing the Consumer Mind-Set

Society’s greatest lie is that a good life is based on the accumulation and possession of as many material items as possible. Massive houses, expensive cars, grand yachts, glittering diamonds — you know, the Instagram-worthy, Kardashian-inspired lifestyle. When we believe that more is better, we fall prey to the notion that money can buy happiness. That’s where minimalism comes in. Minimalism frees us from the all-consuming desire to possess. It sidesteps consumerism and compels us to seek happiness in experiences and relationships. It encourages us to actually live a life instead of buying one.

Now, all this isn’t to say that there’s anything wrong with owning material possessions. It’s more about throwing off the meaning we attribute to said possessions. To put it more plainly, acquiring more stuff shouldn’t come before our health, relationships or personal growth. If owning a house or a car is important to you, that’s perfectly fine. Minimalism is merely a method that supports you in making these decisions more thoughtfully.

When it comes to your possessions, adopting a minimalist lifestyle means being very intentional about what you own and not being distracted by material belongings. While you may want to start your minimalist journey by getting rid of a bunch of stuff, the focus of minimalism shouldn’t be on what you are throwing out, it should instead be on the benefit of removing what doesn’t bring value to your life. Though minimalism sounds like it’s all about having less, there’s actually a lot of “more” that comes along with it. You’ll have more time, more space, more peace and more freedom.

Minimalism Is Eco-Friendly

The basic tenets of minimalism are surprisingly in tune with the eco-friendly way of living. For instance, by making a conscious choice to only purchase what is absolutely needed, you’ll naturally consume less. The less gas, plastic and nonrecyclable materials you use on a regular basis, the fewer nonrenewable resources are used up in their production. Reuse allows you to take this even further, say by borrowing a book from the library instead of buying a new one.

Minimalism makes you more aware of how much waste you generate. Buying less means wasting less; the fewer purchases you make, the fewer boxes, bags and packing materials end up dumped in landfills. What’s more, when you produce less waste, sorting through it for recycling and composting purposes is far easier and more efficient.

Minimalism is helpful in overcoming perceived obsolescence. Perceived obsolescence is when an object is completely functional but is no longer perceived to be stylish or appropriate. It’s rendered obsolete by perception, rather than by function. Minimalism encourages you to purchase goods designed to last for a long period of time, and use them for their entire life span.

Though eighty-sixing excess possessions is a big part of minimalism, the concept goes far beyond what you own. Minimalism should be practiced in all areas of your life — determine what you value most and remove what stands in the way. Apply this to how you spend your time, who you have relationships with, what you eat and so on.

Minimalism, like so many things in life, comes in many forms — it’s a flexible concept. You can choose to adopt the aspects of minimalism that appeal to you most and adapt others to fit your lifestyle. And since it all depends on what adds value to your life in the moment, it’s bound to change over time. After all, what’s meaningful to you in your 20s is not always the same as what’s meaningful to you in your 50s. Just remember, the true aim of minimalism isn’t to deprive yourself of anything, it’s to focus on the things that bring you the most value, cultivate your relationships and live the best life you can.

To learn more about embracing minimalism, check out these fantastic minimalist blogs.

Feature image courtesy of Shutterstock

You Might Like…

How to Make Less Trash the Simple Way

What the heck does it mean to live a zero …Andrea SandersJune 29, 2016

How to Build a Tiny Home on a Tiny Budget

You aren’t alone if you are dreaming about a tiny …Lesley LammersJanuary 28, 2016

Clear the Clutter: Stop Organizing and Just Have Less Stuff

If you’re a Pinterest person, as I am, then no …Madeleine SomervilleJanuary 2, 2015

10 Things in Your Garage You Can Reuse or Recycle

Three out of four garages in the U.S. are too …Brian BrassawOctober 18, 2017

The Startup Using Crows to Clean Up Cigarette Litter

Just how big of a problem is cigarette litter? The …Brian BrassawOctober 17, 2017

How a Minimalist Lifestyle Can Add to Your Green Efforts

You may have seen the term “minimalism” being thrown around …Liz GreeneOctober 16, 2017

earth911

View article:  

How a Minimalist Lifestyle Can Add to Your Green Efforts

Posted in alo, Bunn, eco-friendly, FF, GE, LAI, ONA, Pines, PUR, solar, Uncategorized, Venta | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Here’s how the avocado-toast bubble will burst.

“If you just look at the energy sector, we need about a trillion a year,” Barbara Buchner says about the gap between between our climate goals and the amount of investment in developing solutions.

To spur those needed investments, Buchner’s group, The Lab, just launched a new crop of projects aimed at making it easier for investors to put money into green investments. Projects include partnerships between hydropower operators and land conservation and restoration efforts and “climate smart” cattle ranching initiatives in Brazil, as well as more esoteric exploits in private equity and cleantech development.

There are three main barriers that keep investors away from innovative projects, Buchner says: lack of knowledge of new projects, perception of higher risk, and an unwillingness to go in alone on unproven projects.

Breaking down these barriers is important because that climate investment gap can’t be closed by government spending alone.

“It’s the backbone, it’s the engine behind overall climate finance,” Buchner says of these early, targeted projects by governments and non-governmental organizations. “But the private sector [investors] really are the ones that make the difference.”

View original article: 

Here’s how the avocado-toast bubble will burst.

Posted in alo, Anchor, FF, G & F, GE, ONA, oven, PUR, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Here’s how the avocado-toast bubble will burst.

People keep building in flood-prone places like Houston.

Over the past two days, the storm — anticipated to hit Texas later Friday — has rapidly strengthened into a Category 3 major hurricane, packing 120 mph winds and a threatening a multi-day rainfall so heavy you’ll need a yardstick to measure it. The storm’s impact could be among the worst in U.S. weather history, rivaling even Hurricane Katrina.

The implications are hard to put into words, so I asked my meteorologist colleagues to describe them using one or two:

“Epic, unprecedented” — Brian McNoldy, hurricane specialist at University of Miami

“Unprecedented danger” — Marshall Shepherd, meteorology professor at University of Georgia

“In a word: life-changing. The question is where, how expansive, and how many people’s lives it will change. If nothing else this should be a big wake-up call to many.” — Anthony Fracasso, forecaster at the NOAA Weather Prediction Center

“Dangerous, scary” — Adam Sobel, hurricane expert, Columbia University

“Epic deluge” — Ryan Maue, hurricane expert, WeatherBELL analytics

“One word, given the storm’s longevity: torturous” — Jim Cantore, the Weather Channel

“Simply: overwhelming” — Taylor Trogdon, National Hurricane Center

“Prolonged misery” — Rick Smith, NWS meteorologist in Norman, Oklahoma

Two answers, not playing by the rules with both. 1.) Forecast challenge of a career. 2.) Enormously challenging.” — Matt Lanza, energy industry meteorologist based in Houston

Original source – 

People keep building in flood-prone places like Houston.

Posted in alo, Anchor, Anker, FF, G & F, GE, ONA, organic, Prepara, ProPublica, The Atlantic, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on People keep building in flood-prone places like Houston.

Glacier National Park is overcrowded. Thanks, climate change.

During a Thursday interview on a Texas radio show the EPA administrator said his agency wants objective science to buttress its mission. Sounds like something Pruitt and scientists can agree on, right?

Not exactly. Right after endorsing peer-reviewed science Pruitt dropped this: “Science should not be something that’s just thrown about to try to dictate policy in Washington, D.C.”

Experts at NOAA, the Department of the Interior, and Pruitt’s own agency have said they think science is exactly what policy should be based on.

On air, Pruitt touched on his usual topics: Superfund, how the Paris Agreement is a bad deal for the U.S., and, of course, CO2. The radio station’s meteorologist asked Pruitt why the country has such a preoccupation with the greenhouse gas. “It serves political ends,” Pruitt said. “The past administration used it as a wedge issue.”

Besides the conflicting statements on science, it was a pretty classic Pruitt interview. But we can finally put one burning question to rest about our newish EPA administrator: Does he separate his trash into the proper bins? “I have,” Pruitt said coyly. “I have recycled.”

Read the article: 

Glacier National Park is overcrowded. Thanks, climate change.

Posted in alo, Anchor, FF, G & F, GE, KTP, LAI, LG, ONA, PUR, Ringer, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Glacier National Park is overcrowded. Thanks, climate change.

An art installation about rising seas sank into a Philly river.

Source:

An art installation about rising seas sank into a Philly river.

Posted in alo, Anchor, FF, G & F, GE, LAI, ONA, organic, Paradise, Ringer, solar, solar panels, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on An art installation about rising seas sank into a Philly river.

Have what it takes to be a Grist fellow? Don’t miss the application deadline!

Listen up, procrastinators: You have a few days left to apply for Grist’s fall 2017 fellowship. The application deadline is Monday, July 31, 2017.

If you’re just now hearing about the fellowship, here’s the gist: We’re looking for early-career journalists to come work with us for six months and get paid. This time around, we’re looking for all-stars in two areas: environmental justice and video. You’ll find a full program description and application requirements here.

Our dynamic duo of current fellows just keeps raising the bar for excellence. Senior fellow Emma Foehringer Merchant reports on a shuttered army base in West Oakland that’s the source of a controversial redevelopment project. (Emma’s story is the second installment of our ongoing Extreme Community Makeover series.) And video fellow Vishakha Darbha tells the story of East Chicago, Indiana, which has been called “the next Flint” due to widespread lead contamination. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: We ❤️ our fellows.

So what are you waiting for? Oh, right, the last possible minute. As long as we receive your application by 11:59 p.m. PT on July 31, no judgment here.

More: 

Have what it takes to be a Grist fellow? Don’t miss the application deadline!

Posted in alo, Anchor, FF, G & F, GE, ONA, Ringer, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Have what it takes to be a Grist fellow? Don’t miss the application deadline!

No talking climate change to Zuck, White House tells scientist.

See original article here:

No talking climate change to Zuck, White House tells scientist.

Posted in alo, G & F, GE, ONA, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on No talking climate change to Zuck, White House tells scientist.

No talking climate change to Zuckerberg, White House tells scientist.

This article is from:  

No talking climate change to Zuckerberg, White House tells scientist.

Posted in alo, G & F, GE, ONA, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on No talking climate change to Zuckerberg, White House tells scientist.

Volvo is the first mainstream automaker to say ‘Goodbye gas, hello electric.’

Link to article:

Volvo is the first mainstream automaker to say ‘Goodbye gas, hello electric.’

Posted in GE, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Volvo is the first mainstream automaker to say ‘Goodbye gas, hello electric.’

Amazon is buying Whole Foods. Are grocery stores the new warehouses?

This week, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s office announced a new initiative to combat climate change–augmented extreme heat in the city. It comes down to: Plant a tree! Make a palThose are actually not bad ideas. 

The $106 million package — dubbed Cool Neighborhoods NYC, which, yikes — will largely go to tree-planting across more heatwave-endangered communities in the South Bronx, Northern Manhattan, and Central Brooklyn. Funding will also further develop the unpronounceable NYC °CoolRoofs program, which aims to cover 2.7 million square feet of city roofs with foliage.

But, to me, the more noteworthy component of the plan is Be A Buddy NYC — again, yikes — which “promotes community cohesion” as a means of climate resilience.

“A heat emergency is not the time to identify vulnerable residents,” explains the Mayor’s Office’s report. “Rather, it is important to build social networks that can help share life-saving information prior to such an emergency, and can reach out to at-risk neighbors during an extreme heat event.”

The new policy supports the argument that this whole community engagement thing is a crucial tactic in the fight against climate change.

See original: 

Amazon is buying Whole Foods. Are grocery stores the new warehouses?

Posted in alo, Anchor, FF, G & F, GE, LAI, ONA, organic, PUR, Ringer, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Amazon is buying Whole Foods. Are grocery stores the new warehouses?