1) Eat less meat and dairy
If you can hack the sudden change to a full vegan diet then go for it, otherwise, find a balance that works for you. Any reduction of meat and dairy consumption is a positive step forward for the planet and you’re far more likely to have a lasting impact if you change your diet with small and achievable goals.
2) Monitor your water use
- Turn off the tap whilst brushing your teeth
- Drink tap water instead of bottled water
- Wash your clothes on a colder setting & don’t do half loads
- Take quick showers instead of baths
- Don’t pre-rinse the dishes
3) Monitor your electricity use
- Turn off lights and plugs when you’re not using them
- Put a jumper on instead of your central heating
- Get rid of your tumble dryer and use a washing line
- Don’t pre-heat your oven unless truly necessary
4) Walk, bike or take public transport
Car pollution is one of the biggest causes of global warming because vehicles emit carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that trap heat in the atmosphere causing the world’s temperature to rise. So opting for a car-less commute or minimising the use of your car when possible is an excellent way to help the planet.
5) Recycle & compost
As a species, we sure do make a lot of waste and seem to have very little consideration for what is going to happen to all that waste in the long run. It’s time everyone pulls their weight by learning the ins and outs of recycling and composting to minimise your household’s contribution to the impending landfill crisis.
6) Make your home energy efficient
- Change to compact fluorescent light bulbs
- Get a programmable thermostat
- Choose energy-efficient appliances when you replace them
- Insulate your home, cavity wall insulation can cut heat loss through the wall by up to 60%
7) Use recyclable or reusable wrapping paper
Brown paper or fabric and ribbon can be just as pretty, if not prettier for decorating your presents with and showing your loved ones you care.
8) Use rechargeable batteries
Batteries are extremely harmful to the environment, the chemicals can leak into the soil and contaminate water supplies which endangers the wildlife and us. Yes, rechargeable batteries are a little more pricey than single-use ones but ultimately you’ll save a lot of money by opting for ones that can be used time and time again.
9) Use cotton buds with a paper spindle
A simple change of your cotton buds from plastic spindles to paper ones can make them 100% recyclable.
10) Cancel all unnecessary post
Let’s face it, all that unnecessary post is a huge waste of paper, super annoying and you can probably access all that information online anyway. C
11) Buy matches instead of lighters
Be extra eco-friendly and get some cardboard matches which are made from recycled material.
12) Slow your speed
Driving at 50mph uses 25% less fuel than 70mph so what’s the hurry?
13) Regularly maintain your car
Simple things like checking the filters are clean and the tyres are correctly inflated can save money on fuel and reduce pollution.
14) Join a library
This is a two in one good deed, you can help save the local library and also save the trees by not buying books.
15) Use low-phosphate washing-up liquid
Phosphates stimulate algal growth in the water supply and algal lowers oxygen levels which kills plants and fish.
16) Buy more local food or grow your own
Supporting your local farmers market is so important, especially in this supermarket dominated era. Buying local means your food is fresher, it has travelled far less which equals less CO2 emissions and your money is going to a family business instead of lining the pockets of the multi-millionaire supermarket owners.
Additionally, if you have the space and an interest in gardening then try growing your own food to save a lot of money!
17) Refuse or reuse plastic carrier bags
The 5p bag charge has been a really great step towards making the whole country think about their plastic use. If you keep plastic bags on you then you’ll never be caught off guard and need to pay for another 5p bag again. Or go away from plastic altogether and get yourself some nice cotton bags.
18) Donate your unwanted stuff
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Instead of binning all the things you don’t want in your next clear out, why not take it to a charity shop instead. It’s far better than your old stuff just ending up in a landfill somewhere.
19) Buy second hand
Same principle as above really. Shop around for second hand items first before going straight to brand new. You can save a lot of money, find some real treasures and you’ll be helping the planet out!
20) Paint your walls a pale colour
A lighter colour on your walls means you’ll use less artificial light. It’s a simple trick that is actually very effective, plus lighter colours make you feel happier and calmer.
21) ‘If it’s yellow that’s mellow, if it’s brown flush it down’
The old Australian proverb with a lot of eco-friendly merit to it!
22) Use big curtains, to keep more heat in the winter
Say no to blinds, it’s all about curtains! You’ll lose far less heat in the winter if you switch to curtains and in turn, that’ll mean you won’t need to spend as much – win, win!
23) Cut up the plastic rings from packs of beer and cider
In the water this piece of plastic appears invisible and as a result wildlife can get stuck or even choke to death because of these rings.
24) Invest in a travel mug
Nowadays, most coffee shops will even knock a bit off the price if you bring in your own reusable cup so really there is no reason not to get a travel mug of your own.
25) Keep a metal straw in your bag
It’s such a handy little thing to keep on you at all times, and it means you’ll never need to use a plastic straw again.
26) Go paperless at work if you can
Does anything really need to be printed nowadays? If it can be sent in an email, then send it in an email.
27) Plant trees in your garden
Add a little extra oxygen into the air, create a nice bit of shade for summer and make your garden a pretty little paradise of nature.
28) Only buy from eco-friendly companies
Do your research to make sure the brands you’re investing your hard earned money into are worthy of your loyalty. At the end of the day, these big corporations are significantly more responsible for the destruction and devastation that our planet is facing than one single person.
Despite how big they are, you are not voiceless and you do have a say in how much damage they can do. If you stop putting your money into their company then at least they won’t be destroying this world on your behalf. The more people who realise that, the more these
29) Use your voice
Don’t stop with big corporations, the real change needs to come from our governments and the rules and regulations they have the power to enforce. Write to your MP, tell them your concerns about the way the environment is being looked after.
Additionally, do your part to create change even in just your little part of the world – for example, you could organise community litter picking in the local parks.
30) Donate to worthwhile causes if you can
Of course, this one is dependent on your financial situation. If you can spare some money, then consider contributing to good causes that are having a really positive impact on the environment.
Here are a few charities that are worth checking out: Earth Day Network, Greenpeace Fund and Friends of the Earth. There are endless charities trying to right the wrongs of this corporate world, just remember to always do your research to find out which one aligns with your views and ambitions for the world.