7 Ways to be Greener – little tweaks go a long way
We all know our earth is precious and it needs our help to be sustained as long as possible. Humans have made such an impact on the environment, it’s scary to think in what state it will be in 50 or 100 years time. It makes me a little sad sometimes to think about how much we take, and how little we put back. But the important thing is being conscious of it and making a few small lifestyle changes to collectively make a difference. Here are 7 ways to be greener each day and do your bit.
BYO Coffee Cup
I was actually shocked to find out that disposable coffee cups are not actually recyclable! Maybe I didn’t get the memo, but I always assumed that because they are made of cardboard, that they are recyclable. It’s the plastic coating or lining that makes them not so. Billions of cups of coffee are consumed from these cups around the world each day, and although the paper part will break down, the plastic hangs around for a long time. Bring your own takeaway coffee cup next time you pick up your cuppa, and some businesses will even offer you a discount.
Bring your bags
Billions of plastic shopping bags are used around the world each year and although they can be convenient, they have a massive impact on the environment. They hang around in landfill, oceans and everywhere else for thousands of years. When I had my youngest bub, I got right into online food shopping and I couldn’t believe how many bags would come with my delivery. There were bags around one item that already had packaging! Now I choose to go to the supermarket with my re-usable shopping bags and produce bags for fruit and veg. I just have to remember to get them out of the car when I get there!
Only buy what you need
It takes a whole lot of energy to get the food we eat to our home for consumption. Let alone the cost! The last thing you want to do is throw stuff out. This is a real pet hate of mine…I just don’t like to waste food! Try to only buy what you need and if things are getting long in the tooth, think of creative ways to use them up. Think frozen bananas for smoothies, frozen strawberries for a batch of muffins or freeze your herbs with a little olive oil in ice-cube trays for use later on.
Grow your own
A great way to make less of an impact on the earth is to grow your own fresh produce. It takes out so many of the steps in the middle and you will get amazing nutrition from plants pulled fresh from your own garden. It might just give you a sense of pride too. There is no limit to your imagination here (depending on what space you have) but a good place to start is by growing your herbs. They are so fresh and last a lot longer than those you buy in a plastic container from the supermarket.
Instead of putting all your fruit and vegetable scraps into the bin, get yourself a compost bin. It’s a simple way to reduce the amount of food scraps going to land-fill and you can use the nutrient-rich compost for your garden. Win-win!
Make a conscious choice to say no to plastic disposable water bottles, drinking straws and disposable cutlery. These single-use nasties have a huge impact on the environment. We are offered so many of them on a daily basis that we become oblivious to it. Try using these re-usable drinking straws and drink bottles instead.
Bucket your shower
Back when my sister and I were teenagers, our Dad used to put the bucket in the shower so the water run-off could be used for the garden when the rainwater tanks were low. It was amazing how much water actually made it into the bucket that would have otherwise gone down the drain. Although I don’t think my teenage self loved the idea at the time, it really is a simple way to save water around the house.
It might sound corny, but together we can make a difference to our earth if we all make a few small changes. And at least be comfortable with the idea that we tried!