Sustainability and protecting the planet is a complex issue, but it’s important to understand the basics and do what you can. By becoming more informed about sustainability and each of us taking steps to do better, we can all play a role in preserving our planet and ensuring a better future for the Earth and generations to come.
We should all be mindful about what happens to our waste. By being savvy we can avoid buying things that we won’t use, however, even if you’re careful, chances are you will have at least some waste to dispose of. The problem is that every time we throw items in the bin, it ends up either in landfill or incinerators, which are harmful to the environment.
By separating things like recyclable materials, general rubbish, and food waste we can reduce what needs to be destroyed in this way. Recyclable materials like cardboard, glass, and some plastics will be reused.
Food waste can be composted (chances are you can do this even in your own back garden). Many household recycling centres have recycling machines and various skips that allow you to separate things by type so make it part of your routine to go and dispose of items regularly.
Reduce your plastic waste
We’re in the midst of a plastic epidemic. It’s destroying the oceans, harming animals, it’s ending up in our own food chain. Microplastics have even been found in the placentas of newborn babies; these issues will have disasterous effects on ourselves and our environment. Our oceans alone have become home to five trillion pieces of plastic litter.
We need to act now, something we can do as consumers is to reduce the amount of plastics we use. This means purchasing and then using reusable bags each time we go shopping. It means switching from plastic bags and clingfilm to things like beeswax wraps for storing food. It means choosing more sustainable options when they’re available.
At this point, we are limited as consumers and do often have to purchase single use plastics when there are no other options, but the more demand we create for sustainable brands, shops and products, the more they will continue to grow.
Reduce Your Energy Usage
We all know the extent of the energy crisis which is going on at the moment. Energy prices have increased at least 50% since April 2022 which is the biggest leap in prices in our living memory. So not only will reducing your usage be good for the environment but for many, it’s now essential just to be able to afford our bills.
There are several ways you can minimize your energy usage to help reduce your carbon footprint, from choosing energy efficient appliances to switching off lights and electricals when they’re not being used. Utilising smart technology can help, as this allows you to set appliances, lights and lamps according to a timer or even switch them off when you’re not at home.
Problems like climate change, biodiversity loss, and water scarcity all present huge issues in the modern world. If we don’t take action to address these issues, they will only get worse. The simple changes above can help to make a difference if we all do our bit.