5 Tips for a Sustainable Autumn

The foliage is beautifully displaying that autumn has arrived in upstate New York! While you enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells of the season, keep these tips in mind to maintain sustainability in your daily life.

  1. Leave the Leaves. The leaves seem to fall endlessly during this time of year. Instead of raking leaves and putting piles of them into the garden waste bin, consider leaving them on the lawn. Dead leaves are part of the natural cycle of plants. In fact, decomposed plants and leaves promote healthy microbial activity in the soil. If you do want to remove the leaves, consider composting them.
  2. Reusable Mugs/Tumblers. The drink menu for autumn is endless. From pumpkin spice lattes to hot apple cider, seasonal drinks are a must. Instead of pouring them into single-use cups that end up in landfills, opt for reusable mugs or travel tumblers.
  3. Purchase Local and Seasonal Foods. Experience the most autumn has to offer by using seasonal ingredients. Purchasing food that is growing and ripe during its natural season means your food doesn’t need to travel from a faraway place. This cuts down the use of fossil fuels and pollution generated by planes, trucks, and other modes of transportation. These benefits also apply when you choose to purchase locally. Another bonus is knowing that your food is as fresh as it can be.
  4. Clothing options. One of the best parts about autumn is the sweater weather. Instead of purchasing an entire new wardrobe, consider rewearing your old clothes or visiting a local thrift store. If you do buy new clothes, keep in mind that the material of your clothing is important in making sure it lasts a long time. Silk, cotton, linen, wool, and cashmere (organic only) are more durable than materials like polyester, nylon, and spandex, which are synthetic and tend to release microfibers that pollute our waterways. Natural fibers are better for your skin and the environment.
  5. Enjoy nature. Experience the beauty of the outdoors by going out for a walk and enjoying the falling leaves. There is nothing like having a picnic with family and throwing a frisbee around during fall festivities. You can also decorate your home with items found in nature or a local pumpkin patch.

Written by Emily Su, Class of 2022

Photo credits: https://wallpaperaccess.com/autumn-aesthetic-laptop