Conversations around the environment and how the quality of air has deteriorated over the years have been on the rise. Right from the ozone layer depletion to pollution and global warming problems are on a rise and so are its harmful effects on the human body. Today consumers need to take simple steps to prevent falling ill and battle through daily life to keep themselves fit. Healthy habits every day are definitely the way to go these days!
Below are some healthy habits we can adopt.
We know smoking is bad for health but few understand the damage it does to the environment. Cigarette butts are toxic waste containing chemicals that contaminate waterways and harm wildlife. Often discarded cigarettes cause fires that destroy property and vegetation, not to mention the air pollution that leads to. If you’re a smoker, it’s time to quit.
Use energy-efficient electronics
Energy-efficient electronics are a simple way to reduce electricity use. Not only will this help the planet, but it’s also good for your bank balance. You can make a massive difference by replacing just one bulb with an LED. LEDs consume 80%-85% less electricity than conventional lighting and have much longer lifetimes (more than 50,000 hours). Unlike the preceding generation of lights, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and LEDs release no mercury toxicity into the environment. It is estimated that the global adoption of highly efficient LEDs can reduce the carbon footprint by up to 800 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent.
Kill germs with purifying solutions
Dust is a leading source of air pollution as it absorbs toxic gases, especially at home. Clean and vacuum your home regularly to capture most of the dust; it will keep the surroundings free of germs and infections. Indoor plants like bamboo palm, rubber plant, and Dracaena, among others, naturally cleanse the air.
The right products, the right way
Using the correct air-relevant products is a basic step towards safeguarding the health of the individual and the planet. For instance, reducing the use of harmful cleaning sprays is important because cleaning products that contain ammonia fumes can pose an immediate danger. Also, buying air cleaners that emit ozone can damage the lungs and worsen breathing conditions. Regularly clean and change the filters of your air purifiers. Preferably, switch to filters that can remove up to 99.97% of microparticles, such as fine dust (including PM2.5), pollen and mold spores.
Using recycled products will save money and energy. A non-recycled material can take up to a million years to decompose. Using recycled products go a long way in reducing water and air pollution. Producing new aluminum from old, including recycled cans and foil, uses 95% less energy than making it from scratch. For steel, it’s 70% energy saving. Making paper from pulped recycled paper uses 40% less energy than making it from virgin wood fibers.
Lastly, plastic straws can take hundreds of years to fully decompose, lasting for up to 200 years in a landfill. It’s much more likely that they will wind up in the ocean, where they break into smaller microplastics that are ingested by fish and other marine life. Unlike plastic, paper straws will decompose in two to six weeks.
(With inputs from Dr. Abhay Kumar. He is an Associate Vice-President and Chief Scientific Officer at Eureka Forbes Limited)
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