The idea of ‘becoming more sustainable’ can sound daunting. What’s the first thing you think of when the word ‘sustainability’ is mentioned? Reducing carbon emissions? Balancing ecosystems? Collecting rainwater maybe?
Whilst these concepts do fall under the broad idea of sustainability, being sustainable is a lot closer to home. Simply put, being sustainable is all about limiting the resources we use and finding a way to make things work for longer by causing minimum damage to the environment.
You don’t need to have game-changing ideas to become sustainable. Every small and conscious action makes a difference and the best part, you could start becoming more sustainable as soon as you’re done with this article!
Here are seven ways you can become more sustainable today:
Be Conscious of Energy Use
This is something you can start doing right away. You know what they say; “when you know your problem, you’re in a better position to fix it”. Start looking into what your usage is and whether you can make any changes. Have you thought about turning down your thermostat? How about washing clothes once a week and at a lower temperature? Are you using more water than you need to? Limiting the use of these things can seriously make you a more sustainable person. What’s more, you’ll probably see a difference in your next energy bill!
Change Your Shopping Habits
It might be a good idea to look through your cupboards and shopping bags to see what you buy. Are they packaged using single-use plastic? Are they disposable? If they are, consider switching to items that can be reused or items that have no packaging. Take your own bags and use them when buying loose items. Alternatively, use the paper bags provided in supermarkets instead of buying items packaged in plastic.
Try Recycling What You Don’t Need
Every item you put in the bin, be it small or big, ends up in a landfill. The more you throw away, the more the landfill is populated. Next time you’re about to throw something away, ask yourself if it can be recycled. It may even be the case that it can be sold. Whatever the case, think twice about throwing everything away. A lot of the time items that we throw away cannot be recycled, so it just adds to the pollution of the environment.
Ditch The Car (When Possible!)
Why take the car when you can walk to your local post office? Choosing to cycle or walk to nearby locations can make a massive difference, not only to the environment but to your wallet too. With fuel prices increasing, it might be a good idea to get some exercise in and give the car a rest.
Become a Semi Vegetarian/Vegan
Reducing your consumption of meat and chicken is one of the best things you can do for your body and the environment. Foods such as whole grains, lentils, nuts, oils and fruits are all extremely beneficial for the body and they also tend to have a lower carbon footprint. To reduce your carbon footprint, buy a mix of meat and plant-based foods so that your body is getting the nutrients it needs.
Get Rid of Plastic Water Bottles
Did you know that it takes hundreds of years for one plastic water bottle to fully decompose? What’s more, the majority of plastic water bottles we see today are not even recycled! With plastic water bottles contributing to sea pollution and general litter around the UK, it’s time to start thinking of alternatives such as reusable water bottles or folding water bottles.
Reuse What You Can
There’s so much around the house that can be reused. From glass jars to towels, and newspapers to plastic bags, you’ll be surprised when you start putting them to use. Glass jars can be used for saving money, storing food items, as a pen holder and much more! The best part is they look great! Toothbrushes can also be reused to scrub those hard-to-reach areas within the bathroom. If there’s a table you’re about to throw away, try breaking it down and using part of it as a shelf! The ideas are endless!
Main image – Appolinary Kalashnikova, Unsplash