The kitchen is one of the busiest rooms in the average house, and the tasks that we do in the kitchen put a lot of strain on the environment. If you want to reduce the amount of energy you use, and the amount of waste that you produce, then improving your kitchen habits is a great place to start. Here’s a quick look at some great green habits that you might want to cultivate.
Instead of buying bottled water, with all of the manufacturing, transport, and waste disposal issues that the bottle brings, invest in a water filter and drink filtered, chilled tap water instead.
Washing Dishes the Green Way
If you have a dishwasher, don’t use it unless you’re washing a full load. If you wash dishes in the sink by hand, don’t leave the tap running while you’re doing the dishes – instead, fill the sink with soapy water, and use a second tub for rinsing. You’ll use less water that way.
Ditch the Harsh Detergents
The chlorine and phosphates contained in many detergents can do a lot of damage to the environment. Instead of using harsh detergents, look for eco-friendly alternatives such as the ones produced by Ecover and Shaklee.
Recycle As Much As Possible
Recycling isn’t something that should be confined to plastic bottles and cardboard boxes. Think carefully about all aspects of your waste disposal. Re-use biscuit tins and glass jars for storage around the house, and consider turning your scrap food into compost.
If you have a condenser dryer, use the water that you collect to water plants in the garden.
Buy in Bulk
It may seem counter intuitive to bulk-buy when you’re trying to cut down on waste, but in many cases you can cut down on a lot of packaging waste this way. If you’re buying long-life items, try to pick them up in large catering containers instead of individual servings. Consider buying meat and vegetables in bulk too, and freezing what you don’t use.
Choose Glass Over Plastic
Plastic containers can be re-used, and can be recycled when they start to show their age, but they still come from a non-renewable resource. Glass lasts far longer than plastic, and is far more durable too. When the time comes to replace your existing tubs and containers, look for glass versions. They may be more expensive in the short term, but they’ll last a lot longer so the expense will be worth it.
Only Boil What You Need
If you’re only making one cup of tea, don’t waste energy by filling the kettle all the way to the top.
Look for Energy Efficient Appliances
The financial savings you can enjoy by picking up an “A” rated energy efficient appliance are huge. It’s probably not worth rushing out and buying a new fridge, freezer or washing machine right now just to go from a “C” rated appliance to an “A” rated one, but if you do need to replace an appliance in your kitchen, make sure you buy the best energy rating you can afford.
This article was written by James Harper on behalf of Kitchen Appliance Centre, retailers of waste disposal solutions such as insinkerators.