As parents, we put more than our potential to raise kids, apply our minds as much as we can and love them with our whole heart, to give them the best of parenthood, yet we forget that mother earth is contributing indirectly in parenting children as well.
Everyone wants to do his/her bit in saving mother earth, and parenting the green way is one such bit. It does not take much effort to raise a green baby or a child. We just have to take care that our day to day activities do not pollute the environment, and that we raise environment friendly kids. A greener world would be a healthier, and a more beautiful place to grow for children.
Its not just about saving earth, but us, or family and everyone from harmful chemicals, pollutants, pesticides and toxins.
Some awareness about our daily activities and products is given here:
Chemicals: There should be increased awareness and demand for homemade or organic products that can be used to replace toxic or chemical products in the laundry, toiletries and kitchen cleaners. Chemical cleaners and detergents pollute the water sources and environment, as they are mostly sold in plastic bags, and are harmful for the people who come in contact with them.
Fumes: Fumes from chemical cleaners, paints and gasoline are harmful for kids as well as parents. But most vulnerable to these are pregnant women, and they should keep distance from such places. Air fresheners and most aerosol sprays contain harmful compounds.
Plastics: Depending on the need, parents and kids can design their own cloth shopping bags. Using less paper and plastic and segregating recyclable and biodegradable waste at home is also a great help. Involving children in this practice ensures that kids will stick to this practice.
Energy: Using energy efficient appliances and lighting sources (CFL and even more efficient LED) is an earth friendly choice. Home and office interiors should be designed for good natural ventilation, and doors and windows should be designed to get the natural light in the entire day. Going for lighter colored walls also keeps a room bright, and there would be less need to switch on a light during daytime. Solar and wind energy is one good alternative. Turning off appliances not in use conserves energy. Overstuffing the refrigerator also accounts for more cooling and energy consumption. Keeping only what is required inside the fridge and regular consumption keeps things fresh.
Water: Using front loading washing machines saves a lot of water and energy. The pressure of water in the taps should be reduced to a comfortable level, so that less water goes to the drain while in use. Water heaters also pollute the environment by emitting carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxide and other pollutants, besides consuming a lot of energy. An alternative is solar water heaters.
These are few of the many small steps and habits that can go a long way in saving this beautiful planet.
Raising Baby Green, The Earth-Friendly Guide to Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Baby Care by Alan Greene, M.D. with Jeanette Pavini and Theresa Foy Digeronimo