The awareness for sustainable living has heightened especially during the long stay-at-home period. Singaporeans are starting to realise the importance of being self-sufficient at home just to minimise the risk of the pandemic. Besides government-initiated green projects such as solar panels and sensor-controlled LED lightings, homeowners can also take initiatives to create self-sufficiency at home.
Below are some very doable self-sufficient home ideas for sustainable living.
Grow Your Own Indoor Herb Garden
Planting your food is one of the most self-sufficient home ideas for green fingers. Of course, if you have land, it is possible to plant more crops. However, most urban dwellers live in high-rise buildings where space is a luxury.
Nonetheless, there are ways to plant your vegetables and herbs indoors. Locate a spot with plenty of sunlight and place your potted plants by the window.
You can choose to grow your edibles from cuttings, seeds or by purchasing a grown potted plant. Plants such as mint, spring onions, basil, rosemary, and screwpine leaves are great as garnishing and flavouring.
By growing your food, you can always ensure freshness and quality in your cooking ingredients.
Composting and Reusing Water for Plants
Organic matter such as vegetable scraps, fruit peel, and eggshells are great composting materials for your soil. By composting, you can reduce the amount of rubbish produced in the kitchen. There are many ways of composting your food remnants. One method is through bokashi composting.
Besides that, you can save water by reusing the rinsing water for your fruits, vegetables, and rice to water your plants. Rice water contains nutrients that are beneficial for your plants.
Make Fruit Peel Enzyme for Multipurpose Cleaning
Besides composting, another way to put your fruit peels to good use is to make garbage enzymes. Garbage enzyme is also known as eco-enzyme, a liquid produced by fermenting your vegetable and fruit scraps.
There are many uses for the liquid enzyme such as a floor cleaner, dishwashing liquid, and fertiliser. Best of all, it is all-natural and doesn’t contain any harmful synthetic chemicals.
Join Buy Nothing Communities
“Buy Nothing” is a relatively new movement that promotes gift economy through community networks. Members in the community can give, request, receive, borrow and share items and services for free.
As such, the community benefits both ways. The gifters have the chance to declutter their homes or offer help to the community. Whereas the requesters and recipients get to enjoy the item they need without spending unnecessarily. In the long run, this practice promotes sustainable living and zero waste.
Reduce Single-Use Products
Single-use items such as plastic shopping bags, disposable cutlery, packaging, and straws have been around for the longest time. Due to convenience, it is easy to take for granted how these items impact the environment in negative ways. While some of these items are recyclable, single-use plastics eventually end up in landfills and pollute the open waters.
While it is difficult to do away with single-use products such as food packaging (it is a necessity to prevent contamination), you can do your part to reduce reliance on other disposable items.
During food takeaways, bring your own containers and use your own cutleries. When you’re shopping for groceries, carry your own sturdy shopping bag. Small steps like these will reduce your consumption of single-use products.
Are you still receiving paper bills and statements? It is time to go paperless. Utility bills and banking statements are now available digitally. All you need to do is opt-in for e-statements. These are usually sent to your email or you can download them directly from the website or app.
This means lesser paper piles and filing headaches. Everything is stored digitally for easy retrieval. Also, lesser paper usage means more trees saved.
Buy Eco-Friendly Home Products
Make the conscious choice to choose eco-friendly products for your home. If you’re a new homeowner, consider installing fixtures and fittings made from green or environmental-friendly materials.
Did you know that quartz is one of the most eco-friendly materials for your kitchen and bathroom countertops? Quartz is a built to last, functional, and beautiful material that is versatile and stylish in many settings. Best of all, it is also a hygienic material, perfect for your food preps. It is one of the well-loved countertops for families with young children.
Self-Sufficient Home Ideas for Environmental and Community Sustainability
The concept of sustainability and green solutions are ongoing initiatives by the Singapore government via the HDB Greenprint. To encourage smart and sustainable solutions, the government has set up a HDB Greenprint Fund for citizens to share their ideas. With the collaborative efforts, the small steps you take will make Singapore a greener place for the future generation.
If you are looking for a sustainable and environmentally friendly product for your home and office, Aurastone offers quartz countertops with stunning designs, high functionality, and durability. In addition, we use recycled water during the manufacturing process. That’s extra green points for the planet! Investing in a greener product is one step towards building a better environment.