10 small changes you can make to help the planet
Following the recent news on the devastating effects of single-use plastic, and how climate change has quickly become a topic for global action, living an eco-friendly lifestyle has never been so important.
Making a few simple adjustments can really go a long way to help futureproof the planet and ensure our coastlines and marine life are kept healthy. These small changes don’t have to be overwhelming and can fit into your day-to-day life seamlessly.
We’ve pulled together a list of tips that can go a long way to reducing your carbon footprint, helping generations to come and can even save you money!
- Reduce water waste: You can live eco-friendly by using less water and reducing the number of plastic bottles of water you purchase. You can also reduce water waste by shortening your morning shower and using a low-flow showerhead, this will also help to reduce your water bill. You can cut back on buying bottled water by picking up a water filter instead, this will help purify your water and cut out the need for single-use plastics used for bottling.
- Turn if off: Turning off machinery, rather than leaving it on stand-by can really make a difference. Energy conservation is one of the most important ways to reduce your carbon footprint and ensure that electrical items aren’t needlessly using up energy. Making this small change will also help to improve your energy bills, which means more money in your pocket!
- Don’t waste food: The mountains of food that ends up in landfill contributes towards CO2 emissions. There’s over 7.3 million tons of food just from the UK! You can help reduce your food wastage by making sure that you use up leftovers the next day and only buying what you will use.
- Try to cut out plastic: We all saw the devastating effects of single-use plastic on David Attenborough’s, Blue Planet 2, seeing just how the misuse of plastic can directly affect our marine life. Cutting out plastic has become simpler, with all big four supermarkets now offering a Bag for Life over plastic carrier bags. We have also seen movement on some brands not providing plastic straws, and others even introducing recycled plastic into their manufacturing (including us! See our Eco Mattress). These small changes make a huge difference and you can easily introduce these tweaks at home, and when making choices on the high street.
- Cook from scratch: You’d be surprised how many resources eating out or ordering a takeaway uses. Cooking from scratch not only saves you money, it reduces food wastage and means there’s some for the next day, too! Eating out or ordering in means food is often coming from a distance, uses wrap-up plastic and cardboard packaging and it’s transported to your local supermarket, which uses up lots of energy.
- Eat less meat: Eating meat can be pricey and the production of livestock has dramatic effects on the environment. 70% of the Amazon rainforest was cut down to make room for raising cows and livestock – harvesting meat results in more carbon emissions than any other protein. Cutting meat out of a few of your meals a week, will help to reduce these emissions and will also introduce more variety into your diet, as you work your way through different vegetarian dishes!
- Change your light bulbs: We’re not suggesting you go out and buy all new light bulbs immediately and replace those in your home… but choosing CFL (compact fluorescent light) bulbs means your energy usage will drop dramatically. When you do pick them up, you do pay slightly more up front, however, they use a quarter of the energy of normal bulbs and last ten times longer. Lighting takes up around 13% of your energy bill, so this up front investment will help cut this down and reduce your energy usage.
- Turn the hot water down: It’s fair to say most households have their hot water on full, on their boiler, with the standard setting averaging at 140 degrees Fahrenheit. When you’re taking a shower, washing your hands or even doing the washing up, you’d never just use the hot tap, it’s always mixed with cold water. Try turning the tap down and watch those energy bills go down, too!
- Use a clothes line: Chances are your clothes dryer is the highest energy draining appliance in your home! Try using a clothesline or maiden to dry clothes, using them in a well-aired area, in a high position to make sure they dry.
- Have a go at making your own cleaning products! No surprise that household cleaning products are full of harmful chemicals, these chemicals work their way into waterways through the sewer system, and ultimately end up in the food chain of animals. Try using DIY cleaning products with natural cleaning agents, such as lemon juice, vinegar and baking soda – they’re all available at the supermarket and they’re very cheap!