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The concept of going green means that an individual is pursuing a more environmentally friendly lifestyle by making ecologically responsible decisions, using eco-friendly products and more.

People who “go green” typically make alternative decisions with regard to the food they eat, the products they utilize and the transportation they use. The mission of going green is to reduce one’s carbon footprint and provide a better environment for generations to come.

Kitchens are a major source of harm for the environment. Often times, it is a place where food is wasted, water is used in abundance and energy is used in excess. Thus, when attempting to make changes to go green, it is important to evaluate the practices one is using in your kitchen and make applicable changes. Below are some ideas for becoming more ecologically responsible in the kitchen:

  1. Wash dishes the smart way: Washing dishes, whether by hand or in a dishwasher, can waste gallons of water. Washing dishes in a dishwasher uses approximately 37 percent less water than washing dishes by hand. However, individuals can save water if they wash dishes by hand the eco-friendly way. The best way to do this is to fill one side of the sink with soapy water and use the other side of the sink to simply rinse the dishes. If you decide to wash dishes using the dishwasher, make sure you have a full load in before starting the cycle. Also, if your dishwasher has an “economy” cycle, make sure to put that on in order to save water and energy.
  2. Don’t leave the fridge open: Opening your refrigerator and leaving it open for long periods of time is a waste. Make quick decisions when you have your fridge open in order to save energy and keep your fridge running smoothly.
  3. Don’t waste bags: This rule applies to the kitchen, but is actually something to think about while grocery shopping. Always bring your own reusable bags to the grocery store so you don’t have to waste plastic and paper bags at the checkout line.
  4. Think about product packaging: Many products you buy for the kitchen will have tons of unnecessary packaging. Try to opt for products with the least amount of packaging. A good way to do this is to buy large sizes of products instead of individually wrapped ones. These solutions are easy to put into place, but end up making a major difference when it comes to the health of the planet.