We realize that life during COVID-19 is unpredictable and has required much adjustment by all. However you’re keeping safe during these times, remember to continue to live sustainably! We’ve done some digging and rounded up the best tips and tricks on how to stay green despite the ongoing pandemic.
Sanitation is understandably a high priority for everyone right now, and many cleaning products have been difficult to find on the shelves. Never fear—you can make your own CDC-approved products at home to reduce plastic waste and save money.
Click here to learn how to make homemade disinfectant wipes. This article includes both bleach-based and alcohol-based recipes. We recommend using reusable cloth in lieu of paper towels to limit waste even further. You can also make your own hand sanitizer and store it in reusable containers.
Brevard County waste collection has not been interrupted due to COVID-19, which means you can still recycle as normal. We recommend staying up to date with changes by visiting their website or following them on Facebook.
Did you know that most cleaning supply containers can be recycled? Click here to verify what you can and cannot recycle in Brevard County.
For the safety of others, if you or someone in your household has tested positive for COVID-19, it is best practice to place your recyclables in a secure bag and discard them in your trash container.
You’re likely well aware of the suggested 20-second hand-washing time, but do you turn the tap off after you’ve wet your hands? Twenty seconds might not seem like a lot of time to keep the water running, but if you wash your hands at least 10 times a day for the full 20 seconds, you could waste between two and five gallons of water each day. Use your elbows to turn the tap back on when you’re ready to rinse the soap off.
While it is always good practice to regularly wash your reusable shopping bags, it is particularly important to do so now. Bags made of cloth should be washed with the warmest appropriate water setting and dried to completion at a high temperature, and bags made of vinyl or similar plastic material should be wiped down soap and water followed by a disinfectant.
We know that it may be impossible to avoid single-use plastic bags, especially if you’re using pickup or delivery programs. If you must use them, be sure to save the bags to pick up pet waste, use as liners for small trash cans or as packing material. You can also recycle them at your nearest plastic film recycling site.
If possible, swap out single-use masks for reusable masks or face coverings to reduce your environmental footprint. You can take it even further by making your own masks from old clothes.
The CDC recommends washing cloth face masks after each use. If using a washing machine, you can throw your mask in with your normal laundry. Make sure to use regular laundry detergent and the warmest appropriate water setting for the material of your mask. Reusable masks can also be handwashed with a bleach solution.
Shop locally as much as you can. Studies show that each dollar spent at a local business returns around three times more money to the local economy in comparison to a dollar spent at a chain store.
When you see creative ways that local businesses are being sustainable and safe during this time—such as using digital menus instead of paper—don’t forget to say “thank you!”
While most businesses were shut down during the stay-at-home order, many people spent more time outdoors. Continuing to enjoy nature fosters respect for the environment and provides a safe place to social distance.
During this challenging time, be sure to look out for your neighbors, and encourage them to stay safe—and sustainable—during the pandemic!