It's tax time again. If you don't owe Uncle Sam and you can claim credits too, this is a happy time for you. With some extra cash at your disposale, you have an opportunity to ramp up sustainability in your lifestyle. Here are a few of my top picks on how to spend Tax Refunds to Green your life:
Buy a share of Community Supported Agriculture! A new farming season is upon us, and it's the best time to purchase a food subscription of from a local farm. I've mentioned Community Supported Agriculture a few times in this blog, so you probably already know that I'm a big fan.
What is Community Supported Agriculture? It is a way for you and me (the folks who don't farm) to buy a share of a whole year of produce from a local farmer upfront. When growing season is at it's peak (usually late April through October), you will get a weekly or monthly basket of fresh farm goods including produce and often even milk, eggs, cheese, meat or flowers, depending on the farm.
Prices vary and from my experience a share can cost anywhere from around $100 for a small weekly vegetable basket to up to $500 or more for organic meats. To find a CSA farm, visit LocalHarvest.
Get a Bike! Remember how fun an afternoon bike ride used to be when you were a kid? It can still be fun...if you take it slow and build your stamina up again.
Bikes are the most efficient form of transportation in exisentence and a safe, low-impact way to exercise. Plus, with the cost of gas prices steadily up to $3/gallon or more, using a bike for small trips here and there will save you some big bucks in the long run.
Buy a Moped! Okay, so the bike thing didn't turn you on. If you're too lazy to bike (like I am these days), a moped is a nice alternative.
First of all, it will save you tons of money if you use it for most of the trips you would normally use an automobile for. Most mopeds get around 120 miles to the gallon! That is crazy wonderful for saving gas money and lowering your environmental footprint. Just as nice: in most states you don't have to buy auto insurance to drive a moped, so no more insurance payments.
The price for a new moped starts around $700. To be even more eco-friendly (and frugal), look for a used one in a local classifieds ad or on Ebay.