Moving doesn’t give you an excuse to harm the environment, even if you move all the way across the country.
Whether you move to a new city, a new state or just to the other side of your current city, you’ll likely worry about the role your move has on the environment. The fuel that you waste on your trip and the toxins you put out into the air can all wreak havoc on the environment. You also need to think about the packing materials that you use and what will happen to those materials when you reach your new destination. Before planning your move, look at four simple things you can do to reduce the impact you have on the environment.
Choose the Right Truck or Van
When it comes to moving vehicles, many people assume that bigger is always better. You would rather have a larger truck with lots of excess space inside than a smaller van that cannot accommodate all of your belongings. When you work with a professional moving company, you can request an estimate. The company will send out reps who check on the overall size of your home to determine the type of vehicle you need. If you plan on moving with the help of family and friends, consider the number of boxes you need and the size of your furniture. Picking a truck or van that is the right size for your move will reduce some of the emissions that you put out on your trip.
Reduce Your Fuel Consumption
The more fuel that you use on your move, the more emissions you release. This can also increase the cost of your move. U-Haul suggests that you find the quickest route to your new home and that you stay on the highway as much as possible. This company, which rents moving vans, also recommends checking your tire pressure and dispersing the way you pack. As you pack a moving truck, look for ways to lighten your load. Moving boxes of clothing to your personal vehicle or carrying the items that you will need right after your move in your own car can reduce the weight of the truck, which will help you get better fuel mileage and release fewer emissions.
Weed Through Your Belongings
Weeding through your stuff before you start packing can also help you go green on your next move. Now is a great time to give back to your community and help those in need. Instead of just throwing away those clothes that no longer fit and the toys that your kids stopped playing with, you can pass along those items to others. Consider holding a yard sale or moving sale a few weeks before you move. Take everything that doesn’t sell and everything you find later that you don’t want to a charity or thrift shop in your town. You can even recycle old electronics that you don’t use anymore.
Change Your Packing Materials
Cardboard boxes and packing peanuts are among the more commonly used packing materials. You may not realize though that those peanuts do not break down and that the peanuts can actually damage the environment and kill wild animals that eat those little pellets. Companies make biodegradable packing peanuts from corn starch, which breaks down when exposed to water. You can also look for boxes and paper for wrapping delicate items made from recycled materials. After you finish unpacking, you can recycle all those materials.
Moving doesn’t give you an excuse to harm the environment, even if you move all the way across the country. You can still do your part to protect and preserve the environment with the right truck, better packing materials, knowing how to reduce fuel consumption on the road and weeding through your belongings.
Kara Masterson, the author of this article is a freelance writer from Utah.
She enjoys tennis and spending time with her family.
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