6 Ways To Improve Sustainability In The Kitchen
Having a sustainable kitchen is the key to having a sustainable home, in both its design and how you use it. If you’re renovating your kitchen or building a new home from the ground up, there’s plenty you can do to design and build an eco-friendly kitchen that lowers both the amount of waste you produce and your carbon footprint.
Plus, the best news of all is that doing so is much easier than you think. Keep reading for our 6 top tips to help you build and maintain a sustainable kitchen.
- Use sustainable building materials
The building process plays a substantial role in the earth’s carbon emissions, so by choosing sustainable materials you’ll greatly reduce the impact of your project. Sustainable materials tend to be of higher quality too, which means a longer life expectancy, less money spent on maintenance and a smaller likelihood of premature replacements.
Some materials you can use for your sustainable designer kitchen include:
- Solid timber, plywood or bamboo for your kitchen cabinets
- FSC timber, neolith or recycled glass countertops
- VOC-free paint
- Install low-flow faucets
Having low-flow faucets is the key to keeping your water consumption down throughout the years, using around 30-50% less water than traditional faucets. If you want, you can also add a low-flow aerator to your faucet to mix air into your water and add volume to it.
Along with low-flow toilets, low-flow shower heads and an energy-efficient dishwasher, you can greatly reduce your family’s water use and keep your water bills down for good with minimal disruption to your daily routines.
- Use sustainable appliances
Investing in energy-efficient appliances is one of the best decisions you can make, helping to keep your energy bills down and saving you thousands as the years pass by. Although these appliances often have a higher price point than their less sustainable counterparts, this is because they’re of higher quality, last longer and are cheaper to run.
Some sustainable appliances you should consider purchasing include:
- Induction hob stoves
- LED lighting
LED lights are the most efficient and environmentally friendly lighting option for your kitchen, being up to 90% more efficient than fluorescent, incandescent and compact fluorescent bulbs. They also have a much longer lifespan than other light sources, which means less money spent buying new bulbs, less non-biodegradable waste and less time spent changing your lights.
One of the best things about LED lights is that they emit very little heat. This makes them ideal for use throughout Australia thanks to our hot climate, especially as task lighting in your kitchen.
- Recycle and compost
Proper waste management is an extremely important component of managing a sustainable kitchen, and recycling and composting is the best way to achieve this. Between all the bottles, jars and cartons you use in the kitchen, that’s a lot of waste. Make sure you always recycle them to ensure they’re kept out of landfills and if your council has provided you with a purple-lid glass bin, make sure you place all your glass in there rather than your regular recycling bin.
Another type of waste you’ll produce a lot of in the kitchen is food waste. While many people think that their food waste will simply break down and return to the earth, it’s not able to do so when in a landfill. Compost is a way to keep your food scraps out of landfills and use them to help your garden flourish.
- Eco-friendly cleaning products
How you keep your kitchen clean is one of the most overlooked parts of sustainable living, with many popular cleaning products contributing to water pollution, air pollution and waste. Luckily, there’s an extensive variety of eco-friendly cleaning products that are effective, efficient and gentle on our planet.
Another step you can take towards sustainable living in the kitchen is to avoid any single-use cleaning products, such as using paper towels to wipe down your countertops. Instead, use a microfiber cloth that you can wash and reuse time and time again.