5 Ways to Save Money and the Environment

Saving money and the environment might not be such a prescient issue for a majority of you college students just starting out in your college careers. However, these few tips could save you some money! Schools offering Energy Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

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Be Green and Save Green

Being environmentally conscious is often associated with spending more money. Hybrid cars or energy-efficient light bulbs generally cost more than their less green counterparts and it can be easy to think that you're just too broke to help the Earth. But that doesn't need to be the case! You can actually save money while you help save the planet ... if you follow these five tips listed below.

Many students want to do their part to help the environment, but it isn't always so easy on a student budget. Organic foods can be costly, recycling is not always available and there's not much left-over cash in a student's bank account to donate to environmentally friendly causes. However, there are some simple steps that a student can follow to help the environment, and even save money in the process!

1. Use Alternative Modes of Transportation

It may be a status symbol on some campuses to have your own car, but it's actually cheaper not to drive it. Gas costs continually add up. Also, the wear and tear on a car from constant use can eventually lead to costly repairs and tune ups. And what about the effects on the environment? The emissions from cars pollute our air, producing bad ozone that can cause lung infections or cause health complications for those with asthma. By choosing to walk, ride a bike, take public transportation or carpool with friends instead of driving, students will be keeping the air cleaner and their wallet fuller.

2. Buy a Water Bottle

'Buy' may not sound like a good way to save money, but it pays off in the long run. Buying a reusable water bottle, rather than buying bottled water, can save money and keep more plastic waste from entering our ecosystems. The price difference is noticeable, with bottled water sometimes costing 2,000 times more than tap water! But the advantages don't stop there. Some water bottles now come with filters built in, so you can have fresh clean water straight from the tap. If you need the water for sporting events, companies make specific bottles for athletes that are more convenient and easier to open.

3. Embrace Technology in the Classroom and Out

Not all teachers will allow computers in the classroom, but classes are steadily moving in that direction. Bringing a computer to class for note-taking means that you don't have to spend money on pencils and pens, paper-wasting notebooks or binders. Furthermore, using an e-textbook is often less expensive than buying a hard copy, even free on occasion, and creating them does not kill trees to create paper.

4. Buy Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

It may be easier to pop some frozen veggies into the microwave, but buying fresh is less expensive and adds zero plastic or paper waste to the environment. In addition to there being no box and no plastic wrapping, you can usually get a greater number of vegetables or fruit for less than you'd pay for their frozen or canned counterparts. It may take a little more work to prepare, but it will keep more money in your pocket, better food in your stomach and cut down on waste.

5. Use Cloth Shopping Bags

It's true that picking paper over plastic could be considered green, but the way to actually save money while helping the environment is to invest in a few cloth shopping bags. This produces no extra waste each shopping trip, since the bags are used over and over again with nothing left to recycle or throw away. Not to mention they are stronger and easier to carry than bags provided by the supermarket. How does this save money, you ask? Well, many grocery stores, such as Target, Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, and Kroger, will give small discounts or rewards if you bring your own bags. Because any cloth bag will do, you can pay less than a dollar a bag and get back the difference in only a few grocery trips. After that, you're just reaping the benefits and being earth-friendly.

Looking for another way to save money? Find out how eBay can help you save and make money.

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