Adopting one of these green new year resolutions or as many of them as possible, will help the environment and your wallet. Just making these changes could save you £1167 a year, read on.
Every step you take will help the environment and the sustainability of human life on planet earth, now and for future generations. You and your family will live a healthier life and save money. What more could anyone want!
You might say “what difference can I make, when the global picture is so gloomy, the problem is so big whatever I do won’t make a difference…”. However if we all adopt that attitude we won’t make a difference, but if everyone take some steps, however small, we WILL make a difference!
Either just decide which of these resolutions you will carry out from now on or print the list (on recycled paper) and tick as many off as possible…….
1. Switch to energy saving light bulbs they use 75% less energy than traditional bulbs and they last ten times longer. Not only will you reduce your electricity consumption and greenhouse gas emission by switching to energy saving bulbs, you’ll also save 30% on your energy bill.
2. Turn down the thermostat and put on extra layers of clothing. Let us reinvent the vest!
3. Turn off electrical devices at the wall, if they are plugged in, in particular if they have a digital display, they are using energy.
4. Fill up any cracks where the drafts come in, use your curtains/blinds to keep the warmth in and the cold out.
5. Only boil enough water in the kettle for the drink you are about to make. Once the kettle has boiled use to straight away rather than 5 minutes later boiling it again!
6. Have a shower rather than a bath, this uses less water and less energy to heat the water. If you are showering already then take a shorter shower, you will save water, energy and money.
7. Start using natural cleaning products. They can be safer for our health as well as the environment. Unnatural products often contain petroleum based chemicals which will be absorbed into the skin – not just through cleaning products, but also through laundry detergents as they leave a residue on everything we wash with them.
8. Keep your car well maintained by changing oil and air filters on a regular basis and be sure your tires are properly inflated. This will dramatically improve fuel efficiency. Or maybe stop driving to work and instead; cycle, carpool, walk or take public transport!
9. Start holidaying closer to home and avoid flying if you can. Driving in a relatively fuel-efficient car (25-30 miles per gallon) usually generates fewer greenhouse-gas emissions than flying.
10. Wash clothes on a cooler setting than normal and hang them out to dry in the great outdoors. This saves electricity, makes them last longer, helping to reduce fade and shrinkage.
11. Consider buying reconditioned/second hand/recycled products/toys. The manufacture of new products requires an enormous amount of energy to both produce and ship. When purchasing an item, whether it is a settee, a toy, bicycle or a computer, buy used. In addition to its environmental benefits, this also saves a significant amount of money. Use charity shops, E-bay, Amazon, car boot sales, Freegle, Freecycle, bring and buy sales, local Facebook sales pages.
12. Start cherishing, repairing and making your possessions last longer, like they used to do in the good old days.
13. Only buy what you really need, stop being drawn in by commercialisation.
14. Buy local food whenever you can; use farm shops and farmer’s markets avoiding imported products. Transportation of food to and from far away places causes greenhouse gas emissions. Or even better grow your own!
15. Select fruit and vegetables which are in season (it’s cheaper and it tastes better too). Or even better grow your own.
16. Choose products that have minimal or no packaging. For example when buying fruit and vegetables; take your own bags and buy loose whenever possible.
17. Where there is a choice – select produce packed in recycled packaging or that can be recycled.
18. Think before you throw, think about ways in which you can reuse what can’t be recycled, for example use yoghurt pots as plant pots, or collect them for our Sussex Greener Living recycling campaign.
19. Use all your food leftovers rather than throwing them in the bin. There are loads of great ideas here http://www.lovefoodhatewaste.com/recipes.
20. Don’t just bin junk mail, return it to sender and ask them to unsubscribe and recycle. Sign up to www.mpsonline.org.uk and the ‘Royal Mail Door to Door Opt Out.’ www.royalmail.com/you-home/controlling-your-mail
21. Save paper, print on both sides and only print what you really need. Always buy recycled paper.
22. Once you have finished with your paper either put it in the recycling bin or cut or shred it and put it in your compost bin.
23. Start making compost. Compost for the garden can be made in 6 – 12 months, this will save you having to buy compost from the garden center and stops kitchen waste going in a landfill site and contributing to the greenhouse gases.
24. Never ever accept a plastic bag in a shop, become a plastic bag free household. Use your “bag for life”.
25. If you buy fast drinks while out and about, take your own mug instead of using the plastic ‘mouth to bin” type. Use a ‘mug for life.’
These saying come from the 1940s and 1950s, lets turn back the clocks to their more sustainable way of living…. Make do or mend. A stitch in time saves nine. Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.
Think global, act local.
So if not for ourselves, for the sake of our children and future generations make at least some of these simple changes now.
The Nature of Business. Written by Giles Hatchins
What has Nature Ever Done for Us? Written by Tony Juniper
How to reduce your carbon footprint. Written by Joanna Yarrow
Eco Logical! Written by Joanna Yarrow
1001 Ways you can save the planet. Written by Joanna Yarrow
More information about the green living tips here.
Infographic courtesy of Wooden Blinds Direct.
Come on lets all go green for 2014.