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10 easy ways to adopt a climate friendly lifestyle

A roundup of 10 environmentally conscious steps you can take today
April 22, 2022


As climate change continues to be an increasingly pressing issue, we often get stuck on what we can do on an individual level to make things better. Oftentimes, information on climate change can be daunting— with overwhelming facts and figures leaving us uninspired to make changes in our daily lives.

It’s been proven that individual action towards climate change can lead to greater collective impact in the future — and there’s a world of tools and resources dedicated to help you get there. 

We’ve rounded up ten easy but meaningful steps you can take to build a more sustainable lifestyle. Whether you’re a passionate environmentalist or new to the realm of sustainability, we’ve curated something inspiring for everyone. 

Dive in and discover what you can do today to build a better world for tomorrow.

1. Watch

Climate change affects all of us. One key way to understand our interconnectedness is to learn from global perspectives. 

Looking for a place to start? Watch Rise: From One Island To Another, a short poem and video by indigenous poets and activists Aka Niviana and Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner. As Greenland’s glaciers thaw, Aka’s traditional way of life in the northern coast of Greenland melts away. The melting glaciers are causing sea levels to rise in Kathy’s homeland — the Marshall Islands of the Pacific — destroying homes and livelihoods. Learn more about our interconnectedness through this inspiring journey of resilience as the two women close the distance of space and time to tell the world it’s time to act. 

Looking for your next good TED Talk? In How to transform apocalypse fatigue into action on global warming, professor, speaker, and writer, Per Espen Stoknes answers a question many of us are asking: how do we get people engaged in solving global warming? Stoknes teaches the five inner defenses that stop people from engaging and offers ways to break down walls for meaningful conversations about climate change. If you’re struggling to communicate feelings and facts around global warming to family and friends, this TED Talk is for you.

2. Read

Looking for a book that draws on the intersection of leadership, humanity, and the planet? 

Check out Manifesto for a Moral Revolution by Acumen Founder and CEO Jacqueline Novogratz, where she reveals 12 leadership practices for anyone looking to build a better world. Jacqueline shares stories from her work with social entrepreneurs around the globe, and illuminates how we can tackle the world’s toughest challenges while keeping people and planet at the center. 

Hoping to dive a level deeper after finishing her book? You’ll gain free access to Acumen Academy’s course, The Path of Moral Leadership, which explores these 12 practices and teaches how the power of moral imagination can create a more just, inclusive, and sustainable world.

We're at a point in history where the current institutions that we have counted on have run their course, but we've not yet reimagined what they need to become. We talk about stakeholder capitalism; we talk about building fully inclusive and sustainable societies; we need the models for that… Those models have to be invented.

Jacqueline Novogratz
— Manifesto for a Moral Revolution

If you’re looking to add a daily read to your routine, check out Covering Climate Now — “the world’s largest media collaborative, helping newsrooms tell the whole climate story — from heartbreaking dangers to common-sense solutions.” You can also read ClimateWorks Foundation’s blog for updates on the latest climate research.

When it comes to taking climate action, nothing is more powerful than building knowledge and staying informed on tough-to-understand topics. The more you know, the more you can think, say, and do.

3. Listen

Looking for your next podcast? Mix up your library with some climate-focused content. 

Check out Green Living Chats Podcast hosted by David Ewusi-Mensah, Co-Founder of the Ghanian sustainable services company, Eco Amet Solutions

Together with his co-host, Daniel Fiifi Hagan, David dives into emerging environmental issues worldwide and discusses practical solutions from different perspectives. Telling inspiring stories, he offers ways to promote a more environmentally sustainable agenda across the globe.

If you like your shows up-beat, don’t miss Gimlet’s cheeky podcast, How to Save a Planet  — “a show about climate change that leaves you feeling…energized.” Together with a group of “climate nerds,” host and journalist Alex Blumberg shares stories about our “climate mess,” and what we can do to get ourselves out of it. Each episode concludes with an energizing call to action, inspiring listeners to do something proactive for climate change after every listen.

4. Join a community

Joining a community of like-minded individuals is among the most meaningful actions you can take this Earth Day. This is why Acumen Academy opened its virtual doors and hosted the 2-day Build Climate Resilience Conference 2022 created for, and inspired by, the power of community - to surface solutions that inspire hope and teach tools so that anyone, anywhere, can make a dent in the climate crisis. 

Catch the replays to grow your individual and collective role in addressing climate resilience, together with our community of social innovators and busy builders. You'll experience the hard-edged skills, strategies, and tactics leveraged by a half-million strong community building a more just, inclusive, and sustainable world.

5. Make a pledge

Ever tried committing to something new — like a workout routine, meditation practice, or study schedule — but found it’s easier to commit when you have someone else to do it with? 

Make a pledge to do something different for climate change together with a group of friends, family, or wider community. Whether it’s planting trees in your neighborhood, upping your recycling, or carpooling to lower your gas emissions, small commitments can lead to gradually larger impacts. 

According to the UN Campaign for Individual Action, “Around two-thirds of global greenhouse gas emissions are linked to private households…From the electricity we use, to the food we eat and the way we travel, we can make a difference.”

Check out the campaign’s ten impactful actions for inspiration on starting a pledge, and download the app to track your progress. 

You can also consider starting a pledge within your organization using We Are Do Nation’s handy pledge platform. With a list of climate actions to choose from, and tips to help you stay on track, adopting a pledge on your own or with a group of co-workers has never been easier.

6. Measure your climate friendliness

From the coffee you drink to the clothes you wear, thinking about how your daily choices affect the climate can be one small step you take — and it doesn’t need to be hard. Here are a few easy-to-use apps and tools we recommend checking out. 

  1. Good on You helps you discover ethical retail brands and see how your favorites rate in ethics and sustainability. Download their app or explore their blog, and get inspired to “wear the change you want to see.”

  2. Buycott is an app that empowers you to vote with your wallet, allowing you to scan a product and discover how it rates in sustainability. The app helps you find sustainable alternatives and offers crowd-sourced campaigns to support the causes you care about. 

  3. Consider tracking your real time carbon footprint with CoGo: an app that connects to your bank and helps you match your spending with your climate goals so you can make better real time decisions for people and the planet. 

  4. If you rather track your actions at a more global level, then check out the One Save/Day app, which helps you take one small action, every day, for a more responsible lifestyle. The app tracks your impact across a global community of users, helping you feel your impact on a world-wide scale. 

For more ways to measure your climate footprint, check out Climate Action 101 — a community-based airtable created by climate activist Piotr Drozd. The database offers numerous resources to get you started on your climate journey, whether you’re an individual, business, job seeker, or just a concerned human being.


7. Participate in an organization

One great way to contribute to climate change efforts is to join and support those who are already making an impact. While there are various degrees of getting involved, the key is to find what works best for you. Here are a few ideas. 

  1. If you’re looking for an international platform, check out Global Assembly — a global citizens’ organization where anyone on the planet can have a seat at the table to discuss, deliberate, and decide on issues relating to the climate crisis.

  2. If you’re bold enough to run your own deliberations, Global Assembly offers anyone the chance to start their own Community Assembly, providing a step-by-step toolkit to help get started.

  3. If you’ve been toying with the idea of making climate change your job, there’s no better time to start. ClimateBase is an online platform that can help you discover meaningful jobs at leading environmental companies and nonprofits so you can start your career in climate.

  4. Looking for ways to share your skills? Earth Hero is a nonprofit created by a global group of volunteers who came together to address the climate emergency. The organization looks for individuals who can volunteer skills ranging from UX design to translation abilities to help manage their app and grow their network of climate activists. 

If you’re really not sure how or where you want to place your efforts, check out You Change Earth — an organization dedicated to helping everyone find their role in the climate solution by asking you a few short questions and drawing up a list of actions and communities that are most suited for you.

8. Plan purposeful travel

With COVID restrictions dropping, many of us are revisiting canceled travel plans or preparing for trips to somewhere new. But in a nearly post-pandemic world, how can we get back to doing the things we love, while keeping humanity and the planet at the center? Start by building sustainability into your next travel itinerary with these eco-friendly tools. 

Book your trip using the travel search engine, Glooby, which helps you find and compare prices on airplane tickets and lodging, while flagging the most fuel-efficient flights and eco-friendly hotels. 

If you’re traveling by car or bus, consider using the community-based travel network, BlaBlaCar. Their app leverages technology to fill empty seats on the road, connecting you to carpool or bus transportation that’s affordable and eco-friendly — saving 1.6M tons of CO2 every year. 

As you research your destination, search the web while reforesting the planet using Ecosia: a search engine that uses the ad revenue from your searches to plant trees in places where they’re needed the most and empowering communities in these areas to build a better future for themselves. 

But don’t stop there! While on your trip, download Giki Zero to calculate, track, and reduce your carbon footprint. The app lets you build a personalized plan to reach Net Zero in a fun, easy-to-use way that’s backed by science. 

The Climate Action 101 database offers more ways to make lifestyle changes and build in purposeful travel.

9. Design, or re-design, your own business

Businesses, including your own, can be a force for addressing environmental challenges. If you’re creating a business, have a side project or an idea focused on solving environmental challenges, consider taking the next step in your entrepreneurial journey. 

Acumen Academy’s Designing for Environmental Sustainability and Social Impact course is a great place to start where you can bring your challenge and leave with a solution. The project-based course explores the intersection of environment and poverty, helping you develop entrepreneurial solutions for business challenges concerning people and the planet. 

If you work within an organization, or simply want a fresh new way of looking at the climate crisis, then consider enrolling in our Human Centered Design or Systems Practice courses. You'll learn how to gain clarity on complex issues and use creative design to find solutions that drive change.  

10. Accelerate your climate-focused social enterprise

Already have a climate-focused social enterprise and are looking to scale your business, grow your network, and generate greater impact? 

Acumen Academy offers a number of climate-focused accelerator programs helping social entrepreneurs gain transformative skills to think more critically about climate resilience. 

While each program has a unique geographic or sector focus, our overarching accelerator curriculum helps you: 

  • Refine your climate-focused solutions
  • Build a profitable and scalable business model
  • Improve your pitching skills to investors and stakeholders
  • Grow your network of like-minded peers and supporters
  • Develop the hard-edged leadership skills necessary to build better, truly inclusive, sustainable solutions

Explore all our accelerators and sign up for our newsletter at the bottom of this page to receive updates on program start dates and application deadlines!