Sustainable practices, as defined by the UN World Commission on Environment and Development, are actions that meet the needs of the current generation, without decreasing the ability of future generations to meet theirs. This includes investing in building materials and practices that support the health of people, wildlife, and the planet.
The Importance of Sustainable Practices for Outdoor Kitchens
By releasing chemicals and creating waste, outdoor kitchens can impact the health of the environment as much as indoor ones. However, there are several ways to mitigate these risks.
Take steps to recreate a more sustainable version of your kitchen by switching out your appliances, furniture, and water-use and waste habits for more eco-friendly ones. You don’t need to do it all at once if you already have an outdoor kitchen. However, as items break or wear down, try replacing them with well-researched alternatives.
Incorporating Sustainable Practices
Begin by considering more energy-efficient appliances. Electric, gas, and solar barbecue grills produce less pollution than charcoal ones. You can also avoid costly replacements and waste by buying higher-quality items, to begin with. While it may seem expensive up-front, it may end up costing less in the end.
Energy-efficient dishwashers and refrigerators are also great choices. Try looking up an appliance’s energy rating before replacing it. Plus, reports show that dishwashers actually tend to use much less water than hand washing, so you can save both time and waste less water by using one!
Recycling and reusing items to make your outdoor kitchen green is another great option. Try searching from resale shops and websites before purchasing new items. Not only will you save money, but you can also lessen your environmental impact.
You should also consider actively recycling and composting your waste. Leave out recycling bins for guests and a place to compost food scraps, which can actually help your garden flourish.
When replacing or installing lights, aim for eco-friendly options like LED or solar lights. And while the light is necessary for late-night cook-outs, try to encourage your loved ones to turn them off when they are finished. Otherwise, you can install motion-activated lights to avoid high bills and wasteful energy consumption.
Maintaining Sustainable Practices
Once you’ve done the work to make your outdoor kitchen more green, it’s time to think about keeping up with the changes you’ve made. Ensure your care for the items you have with proper cleaning, inspections, and repairs. This will help avoid unnecessary waste and overconsumption.
Another idea is to make a log of your water and light use. How many nights per week did you remember to turn off the lights? How long do you spend washing your fruits and vegetables? Are there ways to use less? Have you been compositing after every meal? By keeping track, you can stay motivated to help maintain your good habits.
Plus, you don’t have to go it alone! Involve your friends and family in your efforts and reward each other for staying on top of it. You may even inspire some of them to replicate the same habits in their own households.