We're all in this together. Whether you believe that pollution and global warming are serious issues, I think we're all in agreement that waste is unnecessary and can be avoided. Here are ways that you can cut your carbon footprint by reducing waste and doing something great for you and your environment.
1. Turn off appliances and electronics that are not in use.
You may not have really thought about it before, but unless you're using a smart charger strip or you've turned off the outlet at the wall, your chargers or plugged in appliances are using energy. So called "vampire power" equates to around 5-10% of residential energy use. Coffee makers, washing machines, dishwashers, TVs on standby...these can all be unplugged or turned off at the socket. You might not cut your energy bills in half doing this, but collectively it's a big deal, and very easy to implement.
Think that throwing food scraps in the bin isn't such a big deal? Did you know that around 40% of what goes into landfill is compostable material? That's huge! Rather than having those valuable scraps rot in a landfill, why not prepare them to go back into the soil to make it rich with nutrients for growing all things green? You're also helping bees and wildlife as compost is a great natural fertiliser that doesn't contain chemicals that can be harmful to wildlife and get into our water. Get started here: http://www.homecomposting.org.uk/home-composting-mainmenu-26
3. Try Meat-Free Monday!
According to many sources, cutting down on meat consumption is one of the most effective ways to cut your carbon and do something good for the planet. According to www.earthday.org if you:
- Ate one less burger a week, it would be the equivalent of taking your car off the road for 320 miles.
- Skip meat and cheese one day a week with your family, it would be the equivalent of taking your car off the road for five weeks – or reducing everyone’s daily showers by 3 minutes.
- Skip steak once a week with your family, it would be the equivalent of taking your car off the road for nearly three months.
4. Walk, Cycle or Take Public Transport
Not only can cars can be a really slow way to get to work, but we worry about them constantly. The cost of owning one, theft, damage, rising fuel prices. Sharing a car with some friends, using a car club, or just giving being carless a try are great ways to reduce your carbon footprint. The best part is, you can save thousands of pounds per year! Here's a story about Anne who works here at BetterPoints who decided to give up her car. Why I Scoot the Commute.
5. Drink Tap Water from a Re-useable Bottle Every Day
According to researchers at The Environmental Technology Centre at the University of Nottingham, people in the UK consume over 3 billion litres of bottled water each year, which can cost up to 500 times more than tap water. Some of these bottles can contain dangerous chemicals that leech into the water and only around 1 out of three in the UK are making it into the recycle bin.