Whichever way you cut it, moving is a stressful process. From selling unwanted furniture and equipment, signing leases and other paperwork to last minute packing, not to mention coordinating the logistics of the move itself, moving is never easy.
With all these things on your mind, do you really need to be worrying about the environment as well? The answer is yes: you should consider environmental factors when you move. However, it is not as difficult as you might have imagined.
The reality is that moving all your belongings and possessions within a state or across the country can be pretty rough on the environment. The fuel used up by your vehicle, the unwanted items you throw away, and even the materials used for packing all adds up and can take a toll on the environment. Take a look at our tips and recommendations for an eco-friendly move and also how to kick off new energy efficient and green habits in your new home.
Donate or Sell Unwanted Items
Most see moving as the perfect opportunity to get rid of old clothes, books, furniture and even electronics by throwing them away. However, throwing all that stuff in the trash could put pressure on landfills. Furniture, particularly, gets thrown out at record levels.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), furniture makes up an estimated 9.8 million tons of landfill waste! Rather than throwing these items away, you can either try to get a little money back by selling them on sites like Craigslist and eBay, or apps such as LetGo.
Or you could also try donating them to charitable organizations such as The Salvation Army, Goodwill and Habitat for Humanity. These organizations are more than willing to travel to your home to pick up large donations. Either way, selling these items or donating them ensures that they reach individuals and organizations that need them the most.
Contrary to what most believe, recycling is not solely just plastic items and cardboard boxes. However, there are quite a few items in a household that could be recycled, from old electronic gadgets to batteries. You shouldn’t throw these in a recycling bin. However, they should be taken to a specialized center where they would be properly recycled. Here are some of the most common household items that should be recycled.
Your old household appliances, such as refrigerators, TV’s, microwaves and others often contain harmful substances like lead. You should try taking them to your local Best Buy, where they would be recycled regardless of where it was purchased.
In case you were unaware, batteries contain toxic substances such as cadmium, lead and sulfuric acid which could potentially come in contact with nearby waterways. This could result in water pollution. Instead of throwing your batteries away, take them to places which usually have recycling centers for batteries, such as your local post office or library.
Your old computers and mobile phones don’t need to end up in the trash where they aren’t useful to anyone. Electronics and electrical cords can be recycled at local resource recovery centers. They can also be accepted by charities that would accept donations for these kinds of goods.
Utilize the Right Boxes or Bins When Packing
Some boxes can be more environmentally friendly to use than others. Whether you decide to buy new moving boxes or use old ones, take some time to consider the environment and explore some greener alternatives. If you plan to purchase a new box, ensure that you are only buying what you need.
Alternatively, you can find boxes that have been used but are still in great condition. Look behind your local retail and grocery stores for discarded boxes. Using a reputable eco-friendly moving service could make it easy to make an eco-friendly move, as they are well experienced in that domain.
Corrugated boxes are also an ideal alternative, as they are easy to recycle as opposed to the bubble wrap and tapes. You could help the environment and keep your household items intact by investing in a set of durable and reusable plastic bins.
You could also ask your mover if they offer reusable bins made out of recycled plastic. Reusable bins also make fantastic storage containers once you are done moving! If you don’t want all that plastic sitting around your house when you’re done moving, you can use a returnable box service that would allow you to return your bins once you are finished with them.
Establish New Habits in Your New Home
Once you are settled in your new home, this is the perfect time to establish new habits that would conserve energy, generate less waste and recycle more. Use your relocation as an opportunity to get rid of excess clutter by donating them, selling them or recycling them.
Take more time to consider your purchases, instead of regularly making impulse buys. By doing that, there’d be much less clutter next time you’re moving, which hopefully isn’t occurring anytime soon.
More comprehensive energy conservation efforts could also save you money and keep your living space in order. For example, replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent lights (CFLs), or even better, utilize LED’s (light-emitting diodes). CFL’s do not require as much energy as incandescent light bulbs, but LED’s are more efficient than CFL’s and do not contain mercury. Also, ensure that appliances and electronics, such as phone chargers, are turned off when not in use.
Knowledge is Power. Please share this Infographic:
<a href="https://ecogreenlove.com/2017/08/08/gogreen-move/"><img class="wp-image-9234 size-full" title="Going Green with your Move [Infographic] | ecogreenlove" src="https://ecogreenlove.files.wordpress.com/2017/08/08072017_greenmoving.png" alt="Going Green with your Move [Infographic] | ecogreenlove" width="760" height="1900" /></a> Making a big move doesn’t have to be damaging to the environment. Here are several ways you can make an eco-friendly move.
David Madden is an efficiency expert at Exchanger Hub. His passion and business is to save companies money through the use of used reusable and repurposed industrial packaging such as plastic and metal bulk containers, gaylord boxes, bulk bags, pallets, ibc totes, and industrial racks.
What other Green Tips do you recommend when moving?
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