3 Ways You Can Make Your Commute Eco-Friendly in 2016
It’s no surprise that the way we choose to travel can have an effect on the health of our environment. We know that transportation has an immense carbon footprint, impacting climate as well as air, water, and soil quality.
If making your commute a little greener is a resolution of yours in the coming year, there are simple but valuable ways to make an impact! Shake up your routine with these three tips for a happy planet and an eco-friendly commute:
1. Change up your mode of transportation
One way to make your commute greener is to switch up the way you get around. Biking or walking have the smallest impact, so going by foot for shorter distances is a friendlier alternative with some serious health benefits, too.
Public transit, while it can be tedious in some ways, has fewer consequences for the planet and induces minimal road rage. You’ll also steal some time for yourself to catch up on that novel your friends have been talking about, or mindlessly scroll through your social media (because you don’t already spend enough hours on your phone, right?).
Researching what public shuttles are available in your city or through your workplace is also a great option.
And if the car is a must and you live in a city that has a metro or subway, driving to the nearest station and using public transit for the remainder of your commute is a friendlier option that will also save you some gas money, too.
2. Make your commute smarter
A smarter commute is good for the planet and great for your bottom-line, too.
Stopping at the store on your way home from work, for example, combines trips and reduces your footprint. Combining your commute with your errands, while it may take extra time, will ultimately save you money on gas and reduce your emissions.
Carpooling is another eco-friendly alternative. Reach out to coworkers and see if any live nearby and would be willing to commute together, or if your partner or roommates work in the same city, see if you can combine your commutes.
Car maintenance is also essential for a green commute. Making sure your oil is changed, your filters are new, your car is in good shape, and you don’t keep anything too heavy in your trunk can all help keep your car running efficiently. This ensures that your engine isn’t overworking and increasing your emissions.
Being smarter about your commute can drastically change how much money you spend on gas. A greener commute ultimately means more green in your wallet. That’s a win-win in our book.
3. Don’t commute at all!
Telecommuting is becoming increasingly popular for many occupations and is a great alternative to the traditional commute if it’s available to you. Advocating for telecommuting – even if it’s just once per week – can cut your emissions drastically over the course of a year.
Keeping more cars off the road has the added benefit of incentivizing other green modes of transportation. When traffic is lighter, people are more inclined to ride their bikes or take the bus. If more people opted for telecommuting, it could encourage others to opt for greener forms of transportation as well.
If you’re looking to be greener in 2016, look no further than the way you get around. The simplest actions can make a big impact.