What Is Sustainable Living?

March 11th, 2022 |  Categories Blog
Group of volunteers picking up trash in park

Sustainability may seem like a buzzword, but it’s a critical concept for protecting our planet. Sustainable living means understanding how our choices affect the world around us and taking steps to reduce waste and protect environmental resources for future generations. It promotes making conscious decisions that reduce our individual and collective impact on the environment. While each of these changes might seem minimal, we can make a big difference when we practice sustainable living collectively on a broader scale. Learn more in this guide from SeQuential.

Tips for Living More Sustainably

While most of us know to recycle and pick up litter, there are many other environmentally friendly habits that we can implement in our daily lives. Try out these sustainable living practices:

Shop Smarter

United Nations Environment Programme estimates that the clothing industry is responsible for up to 10% of global carbon dioxide output and 20% of the 300 million tons of plastic produced each year. Instead of buying new clothes each year or season, shop slowly and with intention. Only replace items when necessary and choose higher-quality pieces that will last for years. Shopping secondhand at thrift or consignment stores is a great way to buy more sustainably, and you’ll often pay below retail price.

Conserve Water

Whether you rent or own, there are lots of things you can do at home to use less water. Don’t leave the water running when scrubbing the dishes or brushing your teeth. Opt for low-flow showerheads and toilets. If you garden, use a rain barrel to capture water. As an added benefit, these steps can help lower your utility bill.

Switch to Eco-Friendly Lighting

Another great way to go green at home: change your light bulbs. If you use compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs) or light-emitting diodes (LEDs) instead of traditional incandescent bulbs, you’ll use less energy, and the bulbs will last longer. And of course, always turn off all the lights before you leave home.

Ditch Single-Use Items

Many businesses have already embraced sustainability practices, such as removing plastic bags and straws or using washable cloth napkins instead of paper ones. Some cities and states throughout the United States have even passed bans on plastic bags to reduce waste. You can help support these efforts, too. When you shop, bring reusable bags with you, and buy in bulk when possible to reduce packaging waste.

Recycle Cooking Oil

Restaurants can go one step further in making their businesses eco-friendly by recycling their used cooking oil, which can be repurposed into biodiesel. If you’re a restaurant owner, look for a biofuels partner like SeQuential, and if you’re a customer, encourage your favorite eateries to look into this free recycling program.

Support Renewable Fuel Sources

Whenever possible, support companies that fuel their fleets with renewal energy like biodiesel. A clean-burning alternative to diesel fuel, biodiesel is safe, non-toxic, and has a significantly smaller carbon footprint than petroleum diesel. Diesel engine vehicles and equipment can all accept biodiesel, including trucks, cars, farm equipment, and generators.

Reduce Your Food Miles

Today, we’re used to eating different foods from all over the world. Just walk through the produce section of your local supermarket, and you’ll find plenty of foods shipped in from other countries. These “food miles” can add up to a lot of fossil fuel emissions. When possible, buy local. Shop at your farmers market or sign up for a community-supported agriculture (CSA) program for healthy food in season and grown closer to home.

Of course, individual changes need to be coupled with eco-friendly policies. Familiarize yourself with your local, state, and federal representatives, and push them to support legislation that conserves our natural resources and protects the communities most affected by climate change.

Partner with SeQuential to Reduce Your Environmental Impact

At SeQuential, we offer eco-friendly solutions for foodservice establishments throughout the West Coast. Our team provides a no-cost cooking oil recycling program as well as grease trap services and maintenance. SeQuential partners with businesses in the Pacific Northwest as well as in the Los Angeles, California, metro area.

SeQuential helps restaurants stay efficient and environmentally friendly by safely recycling and repurposing used cooking oil that would otherwise end up in the waste stream. Contact us today to learn more about how SeQuential can help your business go green.