We all know that the environment is in trouble. We didn’t need Greta Thunberg to tell us what we already knew (but thank you for doing so so eloquently). The question becomes, what can we do to help? There are so many things we as consumers can do to lessen our carbon footprint and lessen our effect on the environment. Here are our top tips for you that are achievable by everyone.
Since single use plastic bags were banned, we’ve been told what’s next and it looks like the humble plastic straw could follow. They are made from oil and have a detrimental effect on the environment, especially marine life. Plastic straws are no go. What are the alternatives? Glass, bamboo and metal. Out of the alternatives, metal are the most sturdiest and they are easy to clean. They are easy to transport and can last years. Adopt a metal straw, say no to plastic.
Hire your clothes
Every year in Australia, each person sends 23kg of clothing waste to landfill in Australia. That’s a huge amount of waste that doesn’t breakdown. This is horrible for the environment, especially synthetic fabrics. The rise of fast fashion has seen the rise of disposable fashion. How do we combat this? By renting clothes. As a borrower, you get access to the latest trends for a fraction of the retail price and you can mix up your wardrobe as much as you like without worrying its going to sit at the back of your wardrobe unused. As a lender, you are ensuring that your clothes don’t go to landfill and earn some money in the process. What’s not to love? Make money and help the environment.
Walk, cycle or use public transport
We know that walking and cycling is good for us, but it’s great for the environment too. It reduces carbon emissions pure and simple. When this isn’t possible, take public transport. It all helps to reduce carbon emissions and frees up your time to do things like read.
Switch imported for Australian made
When you buy products from overseas, you’ve got to think about the pollution caused by the travel of those products. Just as flights for us cause huge carbon emissions, the same goes for products from overseas. Buying locally made reduces the amount of pollution and is better for the environment.
Go paper free
With bills galore and paper receipts that we never bother to look at, a lot of paper just gets wasted. Think of all the trees that are getting chopped down for no good reason. The solution? Sign up to paperless bills and view statements online. What’s even better is that a lot of stores will email you receipts so again you are saving trees.
Use reusable cups
With 50,000 coffees being consumed every hour in Australia, that’s a lot of coffee cups. If these cups were recyclable, the situation wouldn’t be so bad. But sadly, these cups aren’t recyclable. Plus they are made from new materials, not recycled paper. To help solve this dilemma, get a keep cup that you re-use over and over again.
Recycling is all well and good and can do a lot to help the environment. But there are so many things that can’t be recycled or are just wasteful. Think endless plastic water bottles and sandwich bags/lunch wrapping. Avoid using things that can’t be recycled. Instead, use things that can be re-used such as water bottles, lunch boxes, cutlery and shopping bags, not just for groceries.
Reduce Food waste
Every year in Australia, $3,800 worth of groceries per household end up in the bin. Over 5 million tonnes of food ends up landfill. That’s a huge amount of food, not to mention money, that is wasted. When food breaks down in landfill, it can create methane which is both bad for us and the environment. But how to stop waste? Always write a shopping list, meal plan, proper storage and don’t shop when you are hungry.
Switch to LED lights
LED light bulbs are not only more efficient, but better for the environment. By switching over, the light bulbs last longer than your traditional globe. In addition, they use less power per unit which reduces greenhouse emissions from power plants. Also, LED light bulbs do not contain hazardous materials like mercury which are difficult to dispose of safely.