So you bring your own bag to the grocery store, you carpool to work and are cutting down on your meat consumption. Looking for something more to shrink your personal carbon footprint? Changing the way you manage your money can actually help make your lifestyle more sustainable. Here are eight ways to make your dollars greener.
- Switch banks: switching banks is a hassle, but looking into your financial institution’s environmental policies may prompt you to choose a greener option. Local credit unions, such as United Bank, usually embrace more eco-friendly policies.
- Make your current bank greener: consider going paperless or support movements urging banks to adopt greener practices.
- Get a socially responsible card: consider an affinity credit card or one that donates to a charity with every purchase. Need inspiration? Check out this list of socially responsible credit cards.
- Become a socially aware investor: new technology makes it easier than ever to put your money where your values are. Fossil Free Funds shows a breakdown of clean energy mutual funds, and modified index funds offer a variety of green investment options.
- Shop smart: spend those hard-earned dollars on products and stores that practice sustainability.
- Book travel responsibly: check out this list of 50 travel companies trying their hardest to reduce their carbon footprint to plan a greener vacation.
- Carpool: Yep, gas probably eats up a lot of your money, but apps like GoCarma, Waze Carpool, and Uber make it easier than ever to save money and make your commute more environmentally friendly.
- Donate: giving to a cause you firmly believe in is a rewarding use for your dollars. Find a charity whose mission you support, and you can even get a tax deduction for it!
Money is a powerful tool for change. Switching your money habits to support environmental causes you’re passionate about does more than just reinforce where your values lie; it also sends a message to financial systems that supporting the environment is the way of the future.