Global temperatures are rising at a level which is not sustainable for the environment to survive and the science is clear that human activity is to blame. However, change can be difficult and after decades of growth that have depended on oil, plastics, and ever increasing production, where do you even start?
Here are five ways everyone can reduce their environmental footprint today:
1. Turn it off
Energy conservation is one of the most important things you can do to reduce your carbon footprint. Leaving your lights or heating on when you don’t need them wastes energy and money, so be sure to turn everything off when you leave the room. Even leaving electricals on standby rather than switching them off can waste a significant amount of energy over the life of a gadget, so hit the off switch you you may see some noticeable changes to your energy bills.
2. Switch to renewables
It is easy to switch energy supplier, and green and renewable energy suppliers often have some of the best value tariffs, so you can save money whilst knowing you are supporting the economic case for lower carbon energy production, such as via wind, solar, or tidal power.
2. Avoid fast fashion
Everybody needs clothes, but think before you buy – are you definitely going to wear this item more than three times? If not, don’t buy it. You can always buy items second hand, and there are a wealth of new companies upcycling older clothes to new styles or renting out clothes so you don’t need to buy new every time. And if you do need to buy new, then make sure you buy clothes that are well-made designed to last more than one season.
3. Buy biodegradable and compostable
The problem with most plastics is that they can take a very, very long time to break down and can sometimes release toxic chemicals when they do, so for items that cannot be recycled, such as nappies, it is important to buy products that will break down more quickly and safely. Currently, these products may be a little more expensive, but it is worth waiting for Amazon to run a sale or digging up some Boots discount codes to buy the more environmentally friendly option if you can.
4. Recycle, recycle, recycle
It is easier than ever to recycle almost anything today, form batteries to plastic bags, so before you decide to throw something in the bin first try Googling for how you can recycle the item so that less ends up in the landfill.
5. Eat less meat
It is no secret that meat production has a significant environmental impact, with intensive techniques bad for animal welfare and bad for the planet. Some people choose to be vegetarian or vegan, but most of us should reduce the amount of meat we eat each week. Why not try a vegetarian curry rather than that lamb biryani this week or try swapping out chicken for tofu in your fajitas?