Let’s dive straight in. We’re in no messing, no faff mode.
- SINGLE USE PLASTICS: ‘Single-use’ was named word of the year by the Oxford Dictionary last year. Plastic is ending up in our oceans thus destroying wildlife, eco-systems and actually ending up being digested again by humans. Avoid single-use plastics: bring your own re-usable water bottle to your fitness class, buy a bag for life (and use it!) and you can now even refill your own bottles/jars with seeds, cereals, grains, shampoo, washing up liquid, toothpaste etc. It’s worth doing research into your own area, but locally here in Teddington we have refill-larder.co.uk..
- BEESWAX COVERS : cuts out the need for clingfilm. Search for them, lots of choice on Etsy.com
- RECYCLE : Not as straightforward as it sounds. There’s a number of things you actually can’t recycle such as crisp packets, envelopes with windows, greasy pizza boxes (my daughter’s obv), food containers that haven’t been rinsed and more. Good article about it here: article in the guardian
- THE CAR : If you don’t need to drive, don’t. Get public transport, or better still walk, cycle. Run, even. Sorry for preaching tone. Not intentional.:)
- RED MEAT : Cut down on your meat consumption, swap in plant-based food a couple of days a week. Meat production has a huge environmental impact due to the farming practices that include deforestation, fossil fuel usage, animal methane, water and land consumption. Producing 1kg of beef requires 25kg of grain and 15,000 litres of water. Start with researching plant-based recipes (you can create your own methane that way :)) and add Meat Free Mondays to your family routine. (And get that app which enables you to locate your children’s phones…..so you can find out why their seats are empty at the table…they’re at McDonalds).
- BEAUTY AND COSMETICS: There are many companies now who are helping us to become much more aware. Bybi.com uses totally recyclable packaging and believes in a very low carbon footprint in the production of their goods. There is of course the Mooncup for collecting the blood from your periods (“gross” according to one daughter, but she’s giving it a go).
- SWITCH IT OFF : Lights, the television, the phone, the laptop. Old school but still rings true. Get the family away from I’m A Celebrity and in front of the Scrabble board. Padlock the tumble dryer and put up with wet washing hanging over the bannisters. It’ll take you back to your student days.
- SAVE WATER : The world’s fresh water supply is diminishing due to pollution and drought. Try not to leave the tap running, have short sharp showers, collect rainwater for washing hair (amazingly effective for shine, apparently) and use the washing machine minimally, with large loads.