8 Ways to Reduce Your Ecological Footprint | I Love A Clean San Diego (2023)

Ecological Footprint: The impact of a person or community on the environment, expressed as the amount of land required to sustain their use of natural resources

It’s estimated it would take 3.9 Earths to sustain the world population if everyone lived like we do in the US. When considering factors like food, water-use, waste and transportation, it’s clear there’s an urgent need for more sustainable daily actions. Luckily, you can start creating these habits today!

Check outthe Global Footprint Calculator from the Global Footprint Network to understand your ecological footprint. Then, incorporate these suggestionsto reduce your ecological footprint and make a positive impact!

  1. Reduce Your Use of Single-Use, Disposable Plastics. Did you know all the plastic we’ve ever made still exists? We use disposable plastic shopping bags for an average of 12 minutes before we discard them (and yes, there are still plastic shopping bags at clothing stores, hardware stores, and more). Other single-use plastics like straws, cups, and utensils aren’t used for much longer. Make the switch to reusable items, such as reusable water bottle, reusable shopping bag, and reusable cups. The best step is to start refusing plastic as much as you can every day.
  2. Switch to Renewable Energy. According to the EPA, the energy sector is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the US. If you have the budget and living situation to switch to solar, look into installation options. If you don’t, there are still many ways to reduce your use of nonrenewable energy. Look into renewable energy options through programs like SDG&E’s EcoChoice. The program allows you to switch 50-100% of your energy bill to renewable energy from clean sources. Best of all: it’s easy and affordable! Log in to your account for an estimate and reduce your ecological footprint in a click.8 Ways to Reduce Your Ecological Footprint | I Love A Clean San Diego (1)
  3. Eat Less Meat. The meat industry is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions, along with its other issues such as animal welfare, water-use, and land degradation. Reduce your ecological footprint by enjoying vegetarian-friendly meal days and supporting local meat sources.
  4. Reduce your Waste. Our landfills are quickly filling up. The Miramar landfill is expected to close in 2030 – then what will we do? Do your part by reducing your waste. Reduce packaging waste in the kitchen by buying in bulk, eating a veggie-based diet, and composting. Reduce your bathroom product waste by concocting your own formulas, buying reusables, and forgoing unnecessary products. Be sure to recycle plastic bottles, toilet paper rolls, and other recyclable bathroom materials. Learn more about zero waste here.
  5. Recycle Responsibly. Recycling helps conserve resources and reduces air and water pollution. It also saves space in our overcrowded landfills. Become a recycling rockstar by knowing the rules for your area and recycling as much as you can. For recycling locations along with repair, reuse and repurpose ideas, visit our recycling and zero waste database, WasteFreeSD.org.
  6. Drive Less. Our cars release many pollutants into the air and our oceans. When you’re able to travel without a car, take advantage! San Diegans can enjoy year-round walking and biking trips to the store, coffee shop, or farmer’s market. When you have to drive, consider grouping errands together or taking public transit. If you rely on your car, make the switch to an electric vehicle. Not only are they better for the environment, but you won’t have to buy gas ever again.
  7. Reduce Your Water Use. Water is precious. We only have to look at the last few years in California to understand why. More water is used in our yards than any other category for the average household. Transform your yard into a water-wise oasis to conserve water. Find ways to incorporate water savings techniques around your home, such as using rain barrels, washing clothes when you have a full load, and stopping unnecessary faucet use. More tips from Be Water Wise.
  8. Support Local. Our stuff travels more than we do. Whether it’s clothes, food or supplies, many items have a huge ecological footprint. Support local, transparent companies and farms to reduce your footprint. A great place to start? Shop your local farmer’s market.8 Ways to Reduce Your Ecological Footprint | I Love A Clean San Diego (2)

Have more tips to reduce your ecological footprint? Share them with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

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8 Ways to Reduce Your Ecological Footprint | I Love A Clean San Diego? ›

Reducing carbon emissions lessens the likelihood and severity of extreme weather events, improves air and water quality, maintains biodiversity, and supports a healthy food supply.

What are 10 things you can do to reduce your Ecological Footprint? ›

  • What can you do to reduce your Ecological Footprint? ...
  • Buy organic if you can, or locally-grown produce. ...
  • Make sure all lights are off when not in use. ...
  • Walk or ride your bike to school. ...
  • Buy products with the least amount of packaging possible (buy in bulk or in big boxes rather than in individually wrapped containers).

What are the two most important reasons to reduce our Ecological Footprint? ›

Reducing carbon emissions lessens the likelihood and severity of extreme weather events, improves air and water quality, maintains biodiversity, and supports a healthy food supply.

What is an example of reducing our ecological footprints quizlet? ›

Ecological footprints can be reduced by reducing the amounts of resources it uses; recycling resources; reusing resources; improving the efficiency of resource use; reducing the amount of pollution it produces; transporting waste to other countries to deal with; improving technology to increase carrying capacity; ...

Which should you eat to lessen your Ecological Footprint? ›

9 Nutrition Tips for Reducing Your Carbon Footprint
  • Stop wasting food. Food waste is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. ...
  • Ditch the plastic. ...
  • Eat less meat. ...
  • Try plant-based protein. ...
  • Cut back on dairy. ...
  • Eat more fiber-rich foods. ...
  • Grow your own produce. ...
  • Don't eat excess calories.
Jan 6, 2020

What are 5 examples of ecological footprint? ›

The Ecological Footprint tracks the use of productive surface areas. Typically these areas are: cropland, grazing land, fishing grounds, built-up land, forest area, and carbon demand on land.

What is one way to reduce your ecological footprint is to use more? ›

Reduce Your Use of Single-Use, Disposable Plastics.

Make the switch to reusable items, such as reusable water bottle, reusable shopping bag, and reusable cups.

What are 3 other factors that determine your ecological footprint? ›

Resource consumption such as electricity, oil or water higher a person's ecological footprint. Therefore, electricity consumption, oil consumption and water consumption are all factors that contribute to ecological footprint size.

What are four ways we can reduce our carbon footprints? ›

How to limit your carbon footprint?
  • Consume local and seasonal products (forget strawberries in winter)
  • Limit meat consumption, especially beef.
  • Select fish from sustainable fishing.
  • Bring reusable shopping bags and avoid products with excessive plastic packaging.
  • Make sure to buy only what you need, to avoid waste.
Sep 7, 2021

What is a simple example of ecological footprint? ›

An ecological footprint example is the demand of resources that an individual puts on their environment and the amount of waste that they require the environment's biogeochemical cycles to filter out. For example, the biocapacity of the earth is about 1.7 global hectares of productive land per person.

What can we do to reduce our negative impact on the environment? ›

Here's how you can help:
  • Tip 1 – Watch your energy consumption. ...
  • Tip 2 – Go vegetarian for a day. ...
  • Tip 3 – Recycle old technology. ...
  • Tip 4 – Conserve resources. ...
  • Tip 5 – Do some gardening. ...
  • Tip 6 – Buy in season and avoid packaging. ...
  • Tip 7 – Travel smart.
Nov 11, 2022

How can we reduce the ecological footprint of a shelter? ›

Here are some ways to lower yours:
  1. Make sure your house is properly insulated. ...
  2. If you have the money to do so, get solar panels or solar shingles for your house. ...
  3. Switching to more renewable heating and cooling like geothermal or a renewable natural gas lower your carbon emissions because you aren't burning fossil fuels.

Should we reduce our ecological footprint? ›

Everything we do makes a demand on nature. The food we eat, the clothes we buy, the way we travel, everything. Added together, the demands made by each and every one of us – humanity's Ecological Footprint – are far too much for our planet. 50% too much, in fact.

What are 6 ways to reduce your carbon footprint? ›

Here are 10 easy ways you can start making a difference:
  • Stop buying your water in plastic. ...
  • Incorporate walking or biking to some of your regular short-trip destinations. ...
  • Turn off lights and unplug devices when you're not using them. ...
  • Keep the tires on your car properly inflated and get regular tune-ups.

What are 4 ways to reduce your carbon footprint at home? ›

Recycle at least half of your household waste. Set thermostats 2°F lower in winter and 2°F higher in summer. Heating and cooling account for half of all home energy use. Wrap an insulation blanket around your water heater and set the unit's thermostat to no higher than 120°F.

What are 5 factors you can change in your life to reduce your carbon footprint? ›

How to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint at Home
  • Turn down your water heater to 120˚F. ...
  • Lower your thermostat in winter and raise it in summer. ...
  • Turn off lights and unplug appliances when not in use. ...
  • Change incandescent light bulbs. ...
  • Use a low-flow showerhead. ...
  • Look for an ENERGY STAR® symbol when buying new products.

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