Saving the world sounds like a monumental task right? But you don’t have to be a superhero to make a difference to the health of our planet. Here are 14 simple ways you can go green and do your bit to help save the place we all call home. If everyone does just a few of these, collectively we can make a big difference; and you could save a few quid in the process!
Please follow government COVID-19 guidelines.
1. Get On Your Bike!
During 2020 we saw a boom in the sales of bikes as more of you are swapping four wheels for two. Cycling to work is a brilliant way to the traffic jams, cut your car emissions and go green on your commute! The Government is also investing heavily in cycle routes and infrastructure to make cycling safer and more enjoyable for all. Worried about the weather? There is a great selection of cycling jackets, baselayers and bike lights to keep you protected from the rain and remain warm when the temperatures drop.
2. Switch Off and Unplug
Your devices still use a small amount of electricity even when they are on standby or plugged in. Shocking right? Turning off and even unplugging computers, TVs and other electrical items at night or when not in use, will help to reduce your energy usage and lower your monthly bill. It might not save a lot but every small action contributes to the bigger picture.
3. Support Local
Give your community a boost by buying local where possible. Staying on your local patch will reduce pollution and your carbon footprint as you cut the miles travelled. We’re confident you’ll find it convenient, enjoyable and the planet with thank you for it.
4. Invest in a Travel Mug
Re-boiling the kettle takes up a lot of energy and water. Travel mugs and flasks keep your preferred hot drink hot for longer, making them the perfect cosy companion for commuters and adventurers alike. Knowing you’re doing your bit to help the planet will surely make that brew taste even sweeter.
5. Turn Off the Tap When Brushing
Around 70% of our planet is covered with water, however only 1% of it is available for human consumption. That makes it a precious commodity. Turning off the tap while you brush your teeth could save approximately 12 litres of water every time. Look after your teeth and the environment every morning and night with this simple routine change.
6. Get Creative When Gift Wrapping
Christmas, birthdays and other celebrations are brilliant! But they also can have an impact on our environment. We recommend getting creative and re-purposing things so you can enjoy the party without feeling guilty. Why not use last year’s gift wrapping, recycle old magazines or maps to create your own design, and re-gift or go homemade rather than buying new where possible.
7. Go Veggie Once a Week
Don’t worry, you don’t have to give up meat forever! But why not commit to one meat-free day each week? The Vegetarian Society states that ‘The whole food production process of farm-to-plate totals 30% of all global greenhouse gas emissions’. Meat production also takes up a large amount of land and water so simply by switching one meal a week you’d be reducing your impact on the earth. Going veggie will also help to reduce overfishing in our seas. Let’s change how we eat to beat climate change!
8. Lightbulb Moment!
Switching to energy-efficient lightbulbs is a simple way to reduce the amount of power you use. They’re great for the planet and great for your bank balance too! According to the Energy Saving Trust, ‘lighting makes up 20% of the average UK household electricity’ so switching your lightbulbs will not only lower your home’s wasted energy but will also save you money without affecting the quality of light in your home.
9. Recycle, Recycle, Recycle
To quote the well-known English Proverb, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” The world’s natural resources are finite and we’re using them up fast! So recycling what we already have is a golden opportunity to live sustainably. If every household recycles responsibly we’ll cut our waste, find new solutions for our rubbish and reduce the amount that goes to landfill.
10. Choose Matches Over Lighters
Approximately 1.5 billion lighters end up in landfills every year. Yes, you heard that right! Plastic lighters filled with butane simply can’t be recycled and so are not an environmentally friendly option. Switch to matches and if you can, buy the paper ones which are made from recycled material.
11. Don't Use Plastic Bags
Plastic bags do not biodegrade and are not recyclable, meaning that they end up in landfills, pollute the oceans and can even affect our food sources. Thankfully some actions have been taken. Reports state that plastic bag usage in supermarkets is down 90 per cent since the introduction of the 5p charge in 2015. This means the average shopper in England now uses approx. 10 bags a year, compared to 140 before the levy was introduced. When you next pop to the shops remember to take your daysack or any reusable bag; you’ll save yourself a few pennies and help to end our throwaway culture.
12. Your Vote Matters!
There are so many great ways to reduce your carbon footprint. However, we also need to change the larger system. Voting is your way of having the biggest impact on UK and global environmental policy. The last few years have shown an outcry for change, particularly from our younger generations who worry about the planet they will inherit. Make your voice heard, make your vote count and between elections contact your local MP or attend constituency meetings to keep the environment front and centre.
13. Buy Sustainable
As consumers, we’re seeking out greener, more sustainable products. Outdoor gear in particular has always been ‘built to last’. Yet big name brands including Berghaus, Jack Wolfskin, Montane and Mountain Equipment to name just a few, believe that they have a responsibility to do more to protect our environment. They are producing sustainable products that are kinder to the planet, changing operations to reduce their carbon emissions and ensuring that their supply chains remain ethical. Outdoor brands are working hard to protect our great outdoors and give you more sustainable choice when you need to replace your old waterproof or walking boots.
14. Spend More Time Outdoors
We’re certainly biased but we believe whole heartedly that the best way to understand the importance and beauty of our natural world is to spend time in it. Sometimes we can get wrapped up in our high-rise gated cities, turning our back on green spaces in search of the latest smartphone upgrade or social media trend. It’s time to hit pause on the rat race, rub your eyes and step out into precious green spaces to experience the sounds, sights and sensations of the living ecosystem around us. It’s in those moments of outdoor adventure that you start to really connect with the world we all share.