[Sustainable Development]

Fast Ways To Green Your Spring Cleaning

By: Avery Jolin

Are you one of those people who dreads spring cleaning? If you need motivation to clean your home this spring, consider how it can actually make a positive impact on the planet. Try these quick, easy ideas that can reduce your carbon footprint—so you have more time to spend outside enjoying the spring weather—and shorten the time you spend on chores.

1. Switch to e-bills.

Sit down at the computer and log in to all your accounts—like electricity, cellular, cable, gas, insurance, and banking—and opt to get bills emailed instead of mailed. It’ll save paper, delivery, and save you the inconvenience of a pile of mail to sort through.

Estimated time: 3 minutes per bill.

2. Spring clean your household’s energy source.

Many electricity and gas providers, like National Grid’s GreenUp program, let you choose to have all or part of your electricity generated from renewable resources without changing energy providers. Contact your regional provider to find out if they offer renewable options. It’ll likely increase your bill $7-10 a month, but it’ll make a priceless impact on your household’s carbon emissions.

Estimated time: 5 minutes.

3. Recycle worn clothes.

For 85% of Americans, cleaning out the closet means those unwanted clothes end up landfills. Find good use for those old socks and stained t-shirts and donate them to an organization like Planet Aid, which supplies used clothes to people in need and recycles old textiles, or a local quilting club.

Estimated time: 1o minutes per bag of clothes.

4. Donate these surprising household items.

Kiddie pools, exercise equipment, music instruments—they can all be donated instead of tossed. Find more uncommon items that are probably collecting dust around your house and learn how you can give them a second life.

Estimated time: 10 minutes per item, plus drive time to the donation center.

5. Pledge to use eco-friendly cleaning products.

Go on ThatHelps’ app to find eco-friendly spring cleaning products and join the challenge. Then invite your networks to green their spring clean, too!

Estimated time: 5 minutes to buy online.

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