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The Food Zone

Fine-tuning your cooking and dining areas pays off in more ways than just saving resources. As in other functional zones, their success starts with awareness: Where exactly does your food come from? Where exactly does your trash go after you haul it to the curb? Playing an active role in your family’s food cycle can be eye-opening, and it often helps spark an interest in improving other house zones.

sustainable, home, how to

The Food Zone

Fine-tuning your cooking and dining areas pays off in more ways than just saving resources. As in other functional zones, their success starts with awareness: Where exactly does your food come from? Where exactly does your trash go after you haul it to the curb? Playing an active role in your family’s food cycle can be eye-opening, and it often helps spark an interest in improving other house zones.

Get cooking.
Embrace your inner caveman and avoid delivery pizza: Make a true effort to engage in the process of preparing and eating meals. Leave your car in the garage and cook seasonally1 and simply at home. Buy locally—–and buy in bulk, if possible, to help eliminate packaging waste.

Recycle.
As a goal, limit yourself to one trash bag a week for your household.2 Between comprehensive recycling and composting, you can get there.

Retool.
Take a hard look at your kitchen. If your appliances are over the hill, replace them with Energy Star appliances.3

Still drinking bottled water?
Shame on you, Earth-hater. Install an undersink or faucet-mounted water filtration system and drink up.

  1. Avoid roasting a pig in August, for instance.
  2. While we’re talking about bags, be sure to get reusable shopping bags. When a cashier asks if you want paper or plastic, look at them quizzically.
  3. And, by the way, do you really need an in-sink garbage disposal? Really? Even the word sounds unsustainable. Try composting the food waste instead.

  • Living green might seem like hard work, but it's still easier than bow hunting for your dinner. Architect Dan Maginn offers simple pointers for designing sustainability into your domestic domain.

    At Home in the Zone

    Sustainability doesn’t have to mean monasticism and darkness—with this zone-by-zone guide to the domestic world you know best, going green can be both more efficient and fun.

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