It is no secret that without swift and decisive action, we will have caused irreparable damage to our planet. Whilst governments around the world contemplate what actions they can take to change the course of climate change, the rest of us can still play our part. Sustainable living is something we can all implement in our day to day lives and around our homes.
In this guide we will tell you how to be more environmentally friendly in four different aspects of your life, and outline some of the best practices in living sustainably.
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Your home’s energy output will not be as straining on the environment as most businesses, but there are still a lot of options to bring your own carbon emissions down.
There are three principle eco-friendly ways to heat up your home:
To be more eco-friendly in your household, you could invest in solar panels. Solar panels use the sun’s energy and turn it into electricity through photovoltaics. Solar panels are much more sustainable than energy derived from burning fossil fuels.
Insulating your roof and loft, cavity and solid walls and even your floor and radiators are all sure-fire ways to reduce heat loss and in turn make your home more environmentally friendly. Insulation isn’t just for keeping that heat in, homes that are clad with insulation are much better at keeping you cool in those summer months too.
We spend most of our time at work these days, so ensuring you carry over your eco-friendly activities to the workplace is very important.
Taking your car to work is usually the easier option. But it is also one of the more harmful to the planet. You could reduce your carbon footprint and be more eco-friendly by taking advantage of a cycle to work scheme, or even getting the train or bus would be more environmentally friendly.
Printing paper goes hand in hand with office work. To be more environmentally friendly at work, take a second to decide whether printing a hard copy is absolutely vital. More eco-friendly options include sending and signing it digitally using an e-signature, or consider sending it in an email.
Think of your workspace as no different from your home. Every workspace should have recycling bins for paper, plastic and soft drink cans and you must respect this. To be more eco-conscious at work you should use the three well-known principles of waste management.
Some forms of transport are more harmful to the environment than others. The aviation industry is responsible for around 2% of carbon dioxide emissions, with that figure rising more every year. In the UK, travelling by plane can even be cheaper than a train fare, but being aware of sustainable travel and how to do your part has never been more important.
To travel abroad sustainably look out for Green Key Certified Accommodation. These are proprietors who are sustainable in everything they do. To qualify they must satisfy 13 criteria, find out more here.
To be environmentally friendly, you should consider your mode of transport’s carbon footprint. A flight from New York to Los Angeles emits 20% of the CO2 emissions a car emits in a year. Check out local transport links and opt for more sustainable holidays when you can.
Before your holiday, ensure your appliances and devices are unplugged at the mains. This will save electricity and save you money. Each UK household spends around £50 – £86 a year to power appliances left in standby mode or not in use.
Developing eco-friendly habits in your everyday life is one of the most important steps you can take. If you follow these steps below and turn them into habits then you will be on your to living sustainably.
One plastic bottle takes 1000 years to decompose naturally. Using a reusable water bottle replaces all the plastics that you would have used and thereby reduces both your carbon footprint and helps reduce the plastic burden on landfills, oceans, streams and other places that plastic waste ends up.
Diesel and petrol cars are the main culprits of CO2 emissions. You can be more eco-friendly by opting for electric and hybrid cars. This is mainly due to the fact that electric cars run on batteries, rather than a combusting fuel source.
Meat and dairy are responsible for the majority of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the agricultural industry. Emissions occur from the stage of production, to processing, packaging, and to finally being served. Farming releases two powerful greenhouse gases: Methane and Nitrous Oxide.
While some people opt to become completely vegan, it is proven that simply reducing your meat intake can have a huge impact.