Change starts with us.
It is what we do every single day that impacts the planet, for better or for worse. Making positive change doesn’t need to be drastic, minimalist or very extreme, In so many ways you won’t notice the difference, only the positive effects on your mood as you know that you’ve done something amazing! Here’s 5 things you can do to get started:
Reuse, Recycle, Return
Coffee cups, water bottles, cleaning cloths, glass bottles, beauty products… the list goes on. Our world has been using and disposing single-use plastics since we found out it was easier, cheaper and faster. But it’s awful for the planet, especially our gorgeous oceans that get polluted with plastic and waste, killing the sea life. But it’s super easy to make a real difference to this:
Bags. Buy long life bags instead of plastic bags and leave them where you know you’ll need them. (e.g. the boot of your car, a roll-up one in your handbag.)
Water bottles and coffee cups. There are SO many gorgeous designs out there to choose from. I recommend: KeepCup, Frank Green & Chilli Bottles.
Soap dispensers – don’t buy a whole new soap with a new plastic container! buy the refill packs that use 75% less plastic.
Paper, cardboard, fruit punnets, shampoo bottles, read up on the back of bottles if things are recyclable. If it isn’t, is there another item you could consider buying instead of the non-recyclable one that is? Check up on your local recycling before throwing anything in there, and if your local recycling doesn’t take it, is there a recycling bank nearby that does?
Beauty products. The Body Shop is one of the most well-known companies that actively try to be kinder to the planet. They have a return scheme where you can take your empties and they will either reuse them for new products, or dispose of them in an eco-friendly way. All you need to do is drop the products off in store!
Turn off the switch
It’s so easy. When you’re not using a device that requires power… a light, the TV, the coffee machine… turn off the switch! Don’t leave it on standby! It’s energy wasted on appliances that don’t need it. Millions across the globe, including myself, took part in Earth Hour this March. I turned off all the electricity in the house, sat under the stars, and actually took in the breath-taking scenes that we take for granted, every single day. It was a positive hour for the planet, and a global symbol for all those that want to co-exist with nature, and not live against it.
Eat less meat
It pollutes the planet, contributes to de-forestation and accounts for the same amount of carbon emissions as all the world’s cars, trucks and aeroplanes.* (So a crazy amount!) Just by reducing your meat intake by 50%, a drastically positive impact is made on the planet. Have a look at some veggie & plant-based recipes for inspiration, or try some substitute-meat: Oomph and Linda McCartneys are two of my favourites!
Sign up to charities
Sign petitions, take part, and/or donate. Charities such as WWF, Friends of the Earth and Green Peace all have petitions you can sign, events you can take part in and newsletters that allow you to get involved with the fight against climate change. These charities need our support. Of course, if you can donate, it is worth every single penny, but just by interacting with them helps them to make the difference.
Think about the companies you are buying from. It isn’t within our control to decide the ethical practises of comapanies, but we can help by second-guessing the every-day purchases we make. Take a moment to think about the company’s ethical and environmental practises before purchasing that cleaning product, makeup item, disposable toothbrush or pair of jeans. If you’re not sure about their ethics, have a look for the same products from companies that do talk about these things, and are striving (and thriving) to make a positive difference in their industry on the planet.
“No one is too small to make a difference.”Greta Thunberg