We have all been told directly or otherwise that climate change poses a great risk to us and the generations to come. Yet I’m still not convinced that it is something that is taken completely seriously. There have been a number of indications of its severity with both the rising global temperatures and the number of natural disasters, but that still doesn’t seem to be enough.
When there is word of the pressing issues there are mass conversations about why we need to alter our routines and become more environmentally conscious, but as soon as the buzz dies, interest dwindles. The important thing to note here is that climate change does not cease to be real once we stop acknowledging it. Ignorance unfortunately is not bliss in this circumstance. That is why I have compiled a list of 7 ways to become more environmentally friendly – without going into financial deficit.
1) Get better lighting
Not only are energy efficient light bulbs good for the environment, but they are also longer lasting than their traditional counterparts with an average life cycle of 10 years. Also its key to mention that they are cheaper to run, thus saving you a lovely sum on your energy bill.
2) Switch over from plastic to tap water
Sometimes we want to treat ourselves to the finer things in life; such as bottled water. However it takes between 70- 450 years for a plastic bottle to decompose. If you traded your plastic bottles in for a GiveMeTap Bottle not only would you be saving money but your purchase would help fund water pumps in Africa. So far 5334 people now have access to clean water due to GiveMeTap and over 4.8 million fewer plastic bottles are taking up space in landfills.
3) Reduce use of paper
It gets pretty tedious having to store or dispose of the mounting bank statements we receive annually but fortunately most banks offer a going paperless service. As opposed to receiving your bank statements through the mail you would have them appear on your online bank account. Which is far more convenient for those of us whose postal excitement only stems from anticipated deliveries. Also stop printing as much. It’s the age of tech, make the most of it.
4) Cut down your use of napkins
Whenever we go to fast food chains or even restaurants we tend to overindulge in the amount of napkins we take, it is almost as if we subconsciously create a napkin contingency plan. Yet it often ends up being the case that over half go unused thus getting disposed of. From this point forth lets try and keep our napkin usage to a minimum.
5) Stop running the tap as you brush your teeth
This is somewhat of a compulsive habit; as though the sound of the water leaving the tap and descending into the drain somehow revitalises the senses. Over one third of the world face water shortages, so I think it’s fair to say that this habit can be spared. Also it only takes 21 days to pick up a routine, so if you start now, in the next 20 days you would have upped the efficiency of your tooth brushing and saved a substantial amount of water.
6) Invest in the second hand
It could be anything from clothes to toys to even furniture. Buying second hand products not only encourages our moments of beloved nostalgia, but the merchandise is usually considerably cheaper. All in all if we gave up all that we no longer wanted we’d both be reducing waste and allowing people to create new memories on top of our own. Also, if you call it vintage you’ve instantly bought yourself some highly coveted trendy points.
It’s a word that most of us have encountered on our daily commutes or simply whilst reading air freshener at home. Recycling really is one of the best ways to be environmentally friendly. Not only are we reducing the amount of waste that is dumped in landfills but we are giving people the power to exercise their creativity and produce social good products. An example of this being FEED Projects. FEED Projects is a social enterprise that sources environmentally friendly materials to create fashion merchandise that are produced under fair labour conditions. With the purchase of 1 Feed bag one school child is fed for the entire year. Since its conception in 2007 FEED Projects have provided over 88 million meals for school children from the US to Kenya.