As a species we are slowly coming to a dawning realisation… We only have one planet and it’s up to us to take care of it before we do irrevocable damage. It isn’t for nothing that the late Stephen Hawking hypothesised that unless we do something to change our wanton disregard for the planet in the name of progress that we will render the planet uninhabitable within 100 years. Many of us are now looking at ways in which we can make changes to our lifestyle to become more ethical in our buying and living habits.
The good news is that this needn’t be hard work or expensive. No matter what you do for a living, how busy you are at work or what sort of household budget you’re working there are a plethora of changes that you can start to make right now!
Weigh up the ethical cost of your food
We all want to keep our families happy, well fed and well nourished, but that need not come at the expense of our environment. One of the most meaningful ways to make a difference may be by weighing the environmental cost of the food in your fridge. Many of us will be switching to a plant based diet this Veganuary not only because of animal advocacy (although that’s a pretty compelling reason) but because its proven that switching to a vegan diet is “the single biggest” way in which you can reduce the impact your lifestyle has on the environment. Needless to say, using fewer pre-packaged foods and eschewing single use, non-recyclable plastics goes a long way, too!
Make recycling your last line of defence
We tend to think of recycling as the most environmentally friendly way to deal with our waste. However the truth is that recycling is still a fairly inefficient and environmentally damaging way to deal with waste. Recycling is a highly energy intensive process and it’s estimated that nearly 80% of recycling finds its way into landfill anyway.Consider composting and refusing packaging and use recycling as your last line of defence.
Switch to a sustainable energy provider
We all need energy to keep the lights on and the indoor gas heater burning, especially in the colder, darker months. Still, that doesn’t mean that we need to contribute to environmentally damaging energy generation when there are so many sustainable alternatives available to us. You should change your energy supplier regularly anyway to make sure that you’re always getting the best deals. Why not try switching to a sustainable energy provider this year? There are more out there than ever before and they are often no more expensive than their fossil fuel burning counterparts.
Ditch the cleaning products under the sink
We all want a clean and tidy home that’s the envy of friends, neighbours and visitors, but the cleaning products that we use to achieve it can do real damage to our local environment when flushed into our water waste. Consider using biodegradable, environmentally friendly alternatives. Or, better yet, make your own cleaning products. There are a number of natural ways you can make your bathroom sparkle and your kitchen shine.
If you want to make a difference and make your home more ethical, who says you should wait until January to do it?
In what ways do you like to make your home more ethical?