While world leaders meet at Cop26 to decide the big steps needed towards reducing climate change, a lot of us at home are thinking about the little things that we can all do. It can feel quite overwhelming seeing the climate crisis in the media everywhere we turn. For those of us that are already on board with the fact that we need to act, the news can be quite panicking.
Maybe it’s too late; maybe we’re all doomed…!
But I think the dramatic picture being presented is there to help convince those who are not already taking steps to lessen their impact on the planet. The shock tactic is needed, perhaps, but that doesn’t stop the already-climate-conscious of us from breaking out in a cold sweat 😊
So what can we do? How can we feel less helpless?
I think the answer to this is that we can all take some action. We can’t all be Greta Thunberg. On our own we can’t make our leaders invest in green energy or ditch plastic wrapping, but we can take back control by making small changes at home. You might even find that greener living is a slippery slope. Actions and items that seemed bonkers when you started out might seem pretty normal a year down the line. Today you might start with simply washing and squashing your recycling… tomorrow you might be all about hemp trousers and sheep wool house insulation! But before you get to that stage, here are a few simple ideas and quick changes that can help lower your carbon footprint or decrease waste output.
Why not pick one thing and give it a go?
- Use a mug to fill your kettle. Extra water uses more energy to heat. This one is good for both the planet and your pocket.
- Switch to tins or trays instead of pouches for your pet food. Tins are easy to rinse out and recycle whereas pouches are made from soft plastic; are harder to rinse properly; and harder still to recycle.
- Think about the packaging when you choose food products. Are you going to eat the yogurt at home? If so, why not buy a large pot and eat from a bowl rather than six small plastic pots? If enough people avoid the heavily packaged versions, the buyers will get the message and choose less-packaged products for their shelves.
- Ditch the wipes… Seriously. They do not need to exist. Face wipes? Use a flannel! Baby wipes? Take some wet flannels or fabric cut into squares in a wet bag or small container (and another for the dirty ones). If you want them to smell nice, try dampening them with chamomile tea. Kitchen wipes… Use a cloth! All these can be just washed in your machine and used again.
- Consider a compost bin… Composting food waste at home is a great way to significantly impact your household’s waste output and lower your carbon footprint – and a great bonus is you can use the compost to nourish your garden – for free! Remember if you compost dog or cat poop to use the compost just on your flowers and not your veg.
- Switch your poo bags! If you’re here, then you probably already have 😊 But remember to tell your friends too! Green Poop Bags are made from sugar and cornstarch blend. They are certified home compostable and make a fantastic planet-friendly alternative to plastic or worse, oxodegradable plastic poo bags!
Photo by Margot RICHARD