Sustainable living means more than tossing your pop cans into the recycling bin.
In our lifetime, we have witnessed increased flooding, rising seas, changing temperatures and a reduction of resources that will eventually threaten the existence of humans and is already changing the Earth’s vegetation and wildlife. The damage done by our ever increasing carbon footprint is changing the environment at an overwhelming pace.
Unfortunately, despite this knowledge, many people seem to think it is more convenient to continue living as they have been, than taking small steps to influence change. But the thing about this situation that many fail to realise is that EACH AND EVERY ONE OF US CAN CHANGE THE WORLD. What an amazing thought. YOU have the capacity to change the world. We have all changed things in our lives at some point – moving flats or jobs, dropping a few kilos – so why should this be any different?
By paying more attention to the products you’re using, the food you’re eating and living more consciously, you can make a huge difference. Here are some places to start…
This seems really simple, but so many of us have made a habit of buying things the minute we want them without taking stock of what we have. Try to make it a habit of only buying things you NEED.
Carry a reusable grocery bag
Plastic bags take anywhere from 20 to 1000 years to decompose ( ABC Feature ) and are a danger to wildlife. Use a reusable tote each time you shop and decrease the number of bags that end up in landfills and oceans.
If you see waste, pick it up. It may not be yours and yeah, it can be gross, but it is such a small act that will directly impact your surroundings for the better.
Reconsider your transportation
Consider public transport for your commutes. Or better yet, walking or biking reduces your carbon footprint while keeping you healthy.
Use reusable containers
Ban plastic bags and bottled water. Stop purchasing single yoghurt containers and juice boxes. There are so many alternatives that are cute, convenient and cause much less of an impact on the environment.
Prepare meals at home or dine-in
Many of us fail to recognise how much waste is involved in an average takeaway meal; from plastic salad containers, cutlery, to a paper envelope to hold your morning’s banana bread - it all adds up. Try to make it a habit of making your food at home in reusable containers or dining in.
That empty jam jar can double perfectly as an airtight container for your morning’s yoghurt and muesli. Your too-tight jeans can be ripped up and used as rags for cleaning. Think about what you can do with what you have.
Eat organic and local
It can be a little bit more expensive, but it is much better for you and the environment – organic eliminates the use of pesticides and local eliminates the need for transportation emissions.
I have started using a reusable coffee cup this year and now my barista expects it. Some places even give you a discount for using your own.
Saving the world isn’t a job to be left to Superman; it needs to start with you!