On this, the first day of 2020, I wanted to repost my favourite article from last year. This post lists simple and practical ways to help save our planet. Environmental issues are the responsibility of all of us as we head into a new decade. If we can all try and do our bit, we can make a difference. If you like it, please share this post whenever and wherever you can…. Thank you. ❤️
Like many of us, I realise that I have been burying my head in the sand for far too long about the state of our planet. Recently, with the help of some young people I know, I have been trying to educate myself on this subject, not only so that I can understand what is happening, but also so that I personally can do something about it. And that is the key. I’m just one person, but if everyone took up the ideas listed below, it would make all the difference that is needed.
Within the next thirty years our planet will have changed, not only in ways unimaginable now, but also irretrievably. If we continue to use energy and resources at the rate we are now, and population growth follows expected trends, we will not be able to sustain ourselves by 2050. Not in thirty million years, not thirty thousand, but thirty short years. This means that society as we know it, could start to collapse as soon as 2050 if serious action isn’t taken in the next decade. Are you scared? I certainly am. But there are things we can do today. Have a read of the following list and see what changes you can make. Because if you and I don’t… who will?
“We are the first generation to know we are destroying our planet and the last one that can do anything about. We need urgent action from our leaders and a new global deal for nature and people that kick starts a global programme of recovery.” Tanya Steele, Chief Executive WWF.
- Take a re-useable cup to coffee shops if you are getting a takeaway.
- Keep plastic carrier bags in the car and in your handbag, so that if you find yourself in a grocery store picking up a few bits, you don’t have to get yet another bag.
- Compost as much food waste as you can. That’s lots of guidance on this on the internet and compost bins are very cheap.
- Recyle all your glass bottles. See if your council offers a collection. If not take them to the nearest bottle bank.
- Do not print things if you can help it. For example, use mobile tickets for trains, cinema, theatre etc.
- Take household electricals off standby mode – if they are not being used, turn them off completely.
- Flush the toilet only when you need to!
- Swap baths for showers.
- Cycle, or walk where possible, rather than using your car.
- Use public transport where you can’t cycle or walk.
- Get savvy with expiration dates on food, don’t forget there is a lot of difference between ‘sell by’ and ‘use by.’ We throw away far to much perfectly edible food.
- Buy cereal, rice and pasta in bigger quantities, so that you are reducing the amount of packaging used.
- Try and buy food items with no packing where possible.
- Try and reuse things or find a new use. For example, bubble wrap can be used to insulate plants in winter, and I make lamps out of old gin bottles!
- Don’t not buy or use plastic straws.
- Do not use plastic knives and forks – you have fingers!
- Read packaging carefully when buying fruit and veg. Buy only local produce, not things that have been shipped in from across the world.
- Avoid cleaning wipes – they are a nightmare for the planet as they don’t break down. If you must use throwaway wipes, use biodegradable ones.
- Visit local pubs and restaunarnts rather than those a car ride away.
- Avoid bleach. Bleach household cleaning products are among a number of pollutants that can hurt the environment as well as human health.
- Buy biodegradable tampons. Most tampons have poisonous chemicals in them and are not biodegradable.
- Buy used furniture, books and clothes where you can. Upcycling is where its at!
- Don’t buy bottled water – all those plastic bottles are ending up in oceans.
- Buy energy saving white goods for your kitchen.
- Invest time into understanding what ingredients the products you are buying are using, and how those ingredients are being sourced. For example, Palm Oil is used in so much of our daily products, but it can be very harmful for the environment and our wildlife when unsustainably sourced. Look for products that state their Palm Oil comes from a sustainable source. Apps such as Giki are great for this – all you have to do is scan the product and it tells you all you need to know!
- Eat less diary and meat. A plant based diet is the best, but if you are a meat eater, try and cut down.
- Get seasonal savvy. Buy only foods that are in season. This will send a message to supermarkets to source local produce.
- If you are in the market for a new car, think about electric. They are cheaper to run and maintain, and so much better for the environment.
- Organise/ get involved with a beach cleanup.
- Think about going vegan one day a week, it’s not as difficult as you may think.
- Look into your local council recycling policies, if they are failing or could do better, let them know!
- Throwing away plastic bags is a big issue. Re use them for future grocery shopping, line small household bins with them or even make yarn out of them and use them for crafting.
- Educate yourself about the problems we are facing, do research, get involved and sign petitions. Write to your local MP and pressure the government to take action.
- Use bamboo toothbrushes and razors instead of plastic.
- Fast fashion buying/ discarding is a disaster for the environment. Instead, buy second hand or buy from local sustainable companies. Don’t throw clothes away, give unwanted items to charity shops.
- Turn the heating down.
- Don’t use clothes dryers.
- Try and cut down on how many times you fly each year.
- Make sure if you eat fish, it’s sustainable and ocean wise.
- Think about our bee population. Buy BeeBombs to create your own wildflower meadow, and bring back the bees. http://www.beebombs.com
- Get refills wherever you can. The Body Shop have restarted their pioneering recycling scheme first available in the 1990’s. This allows people to get money off their next purchase in return for recycling their empties. For every 5 bottles/tubs/tubes returned, you’ll be rewarded with a £5 voucher. Let’s hope other stores follow their lead.
- Grow your on veg. We grew tomatoes, potatoes, parsnips and beetroot last year.
- When removing makeup at the end of the day, use reusable, washable organic remover pads. Ligla do eco friendly ones that look like cotton, but are made of bamboo.
- Talk to your workplace about ways to cut down on carbon emissions For example, organise Skype and conference calls instead of driving distances to meetings. Work from home where possible.
- Donate unwanted food to food banks or shelters.
- If you are buying paper products, notebooks etc, make sure the manufacturers are using sustainable methods, protecting against global warming and the destruction of wildlife.
- Go paperless with bank statements and utility bills.
- Use rechargeable batteries.
- Think about alternative energy/ power. Consider installing solar panels on your roof.
- TALK ABOUT IT! Let’s get real conversations going and stop burying our heads in the sand…. We need to start doing something NOW. ❤️
“The only conditions modern humans have ever known are changing and changing fast, It is tempting and understandable to ignore the evidence and carry on as usual or to be filled with doom and gloom. … We need to move beyond guilt or blame and get on with the practical tasks at hand.” David Attenborough
Very important post! Just a couple of additions:
2. Use hemp or fibre bags
7 and 8. Pee in the shower!
20 / 41. Some organic or wholefood stores sell many cleaning items as refills – my local one sells laundry liquid, toilet cleaner (non bleach), washing up liquid, shampoo and many more. Take your own bottle.
22. Discover (in UK) Freecycle – give away ( or get ) unwanted goods that others might find useful.
Hmmmm I’m not convinced about peeing in the shower… 😂😂😂😂 but I’m with you on everything else!
It’s one toilet flush less each time!
Ok you have convinced me…. I think… 😂
Go on – you know it makes sense!
there are a number of things that I’m doing now.
I’m loving my rechargeable batteries and can’t believe the number of gadgets that I have that use AA batteries.
an electric car is a great idea but they’re awfully pricey and charging stations are hard to find where I work.
I really hate those plastic bags that you get at the market or at the store and wish they would ban them. they’re a significant pollution problem here.
I’ve been putting some research into solar panels for my home. maybe I can buy a starter system that I can add to when I can afford more panels.
Fantastic! I think it’s about us all doing what we can and taking responsibility- anything is better than nothing!
I think that if each one of us just did one thing to help the planet then that alone would make a huge impact.
You have just opened my eyes to so many things I did not know or realized what I was doing . Great post.Thank you.
Thank you so much! ❤️
Really wow dear.Keep sharing and stay blessed.
Thank you! 🙏
Also plant trees 😊 and if you make it a fruit tree it will feed you. Trees sequester CO2 by turning it into sugars and help regulate rainfall by stabilizing the water cycle. As they transpire water into the atmosphere they draw up special soil bacteria that gives the water vapor something to condense onto and form a cloud. Transportation of water vapor into the atmosphere literally cools the ground by 5k kilocalories per hour, per tree. ( if I remember correctly) 😊
Fantastic!! We have a big garden so I shall be researching this further!
If I can be cheeky and add one – write with a fountain pen and bottled ink. Improves your handwriting, ‘old skool’ can be more memorable if you have something special to say and it’s better than disposable pens for Mama Earth.
Just a little step, but if you take care of the pennies and wotnot…
Thank you! Great idea!
Great tips, and Happy 2020!
Thank you for your words on this important issue! It was a pleasure to read!
This is quite a list!
It is isn’t it! I could probably add another 50 now!