It has been predicted that by 2050, more than 70% of the world’s population will be living in cities.
Though this can be seen as a positive occurrence, given that developments in cities are usually more advanced and abundant compared to the provinces, it tends to pose a threat to the environment and human health because of air pollution.
Fortunately, many countries, including the Philippines, are beginning to strive in making their cities more sustainable.
Makati City was even named a “role model city” by the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, due to their implementation of green initiatives. Leadingland developers in the Philippines are also after promoting green living in hopes to reduce pollution that leads to devastating floods.
Even so, city governments and the private sector can only do so much to save the planet. As residents, it remains our own duty to make their green initiatives more effective. Here’s everything we can do to live sustainably in an urban area:
#1 Conserve Energy
Anywhere you live, it’s important to conserve energy. Reduce usage of air conditioners if the weather permits it.
Get cool air from the outside instead of opening the windows. Turn off appliances and lights when not in use.
If you need to dry your laundry, hang them outside instead of using your dryer unless it’s the rainy season.
#2 Limit the Use of Disposable Products
Plastic bottles, single-use straws, and other disposable products are some of the most common pollutants.
Therefore, think twice before buying those products, or repurpose them so they won’t end up in the trash. Invest in reusable containers, straws, utensils, and bottles as well.
#3 Choose Products with Environmental Benefits
If you want to buy a new car, select among the most fuel-efficient models. Or better yet, use eco-friendly public transport like e-jeepneys if your city has it, like what Makati does.
Likewise, choose energy-efficient appliances (those with the Energy Star mark), and if budget allows, consider going solar.
#4 Stick to Sustainable Brands
Check out if the brands you usually buy from practice sustainable business. If they don’t, it’s best to ditch them for good in favor of sustainable brands, which include organic food and other fair trade products.
The downside is that they’re pricier, but when the demand for them surges exponentially, their prices might be lowered, a reason become a part of their growing market.
#5 Grow Your Own Produce
Save money and the environment by growing your own produce in your backyard. If you live in a condo, a window box can do for herbs.
Doing this may encourage you to eat healthier, but on top of that, you’d be steering clear of products that have been possibly exposed to pesticides.
#6 Conserve Water
Like appliances, there are also a water-efficient bathroom and kitchen fixtures, as well as washer and dryers, so make them your only options as you shop for household necessities
. If you can’t replace your water fixtures yet, simply make it a habit to turn off the tap when it isn’t in use, and to avoid taking showers too long.
If you have a garden, consider drought-resistant plants and ensure that your soil is conditioned to raise them, otherwise, they’d need excessive watering. A sprinkler may also save more water than a hose, especially on vast landscape gardens.
#7 Vote Wisely
Consider not just a politician’s background and competence, but also their stance on environmental issues, and whether they have environmental platforms or not.
If your city has already been practicing sustainability, empower and vote for politicians who will certainly maintain it.
You can influence your entire nation to be sustainable with your commitment and activeness in protecting the planet.