Delivering On Sustainability!

Delivering On Sustainability!

Recent high temperatures have seen us all take a massive gasp as we contemplate, with very visual affects, the footprint we are making upon our planet. We all of us flapped about wildly trying to keep cool as we repeated the same conversations the country over: “We just aren’t used to it”, “This country isn’t geared up for it”, “It’s ok in naturally warmer climates when you’ve got a pool…” and as we take stock that potentially this will be the future, because of the way we have lived, we are realising that things have to change. We may very well have to get more geared up for it being hotter in the UK, but we also have a duty, now more than ever, to listen to the planet that isn’t taking kindly to the way we disposably live.

We have the world in our hands!

There is no excuse for not moving on this. There never has been but with a lacking of education and representation of our behaviour’s consequence I think we’ve all found it a little hard to understand over the years. We have to wake up to that now and know that the things we do, the things we use, the lives we lead are changing the world and now we have to make sure it isn’t polluted anymore.

Prince Charles, and trust me, it pains me to agree with anything the monarchy say, has been banging this drum for years while being labelled a crack pot and it turns out he’s always been on the money for decades while we blithely ignored him. Sustainable living is the way forward and we must all take note.

And it doesn’t take much, not really. I’m not saying we have to be all things to all people and do everything, with all the sacrifices, because often wise there’s a choice to be made. There is always going to be some damage done simply by us being and it’s not about making our lives harder all the time but choosing the things which can have a big impact for us and an even bigger one for our environment. I, for instance, don’t use cloth nappies. I possibly should but I run a big household with a lot of washing anyway and I’ve weighed up the amount my washing machine is on and how many more cloth nappies I’d use than I do eco disposables and I’ve decided that the footprint I leave from using my shop bought nappies is far smaller by using fewer nappies but less washing machine time. It is a balance and that’s the one I’ve drawn. I make big compromises in other areas and am always thinking how I can change more!

Small and subtle changes in our lives can make the most massive differences.

I’ve tried to think about our lives and what we as a family can be more conscious of. We have all received packages, for instance, where we’ve opened up a parcel with a tiny item inside yet the box has been huge. A lot more cardboard than necessary and very often, a lot of plastic too. Not to mention the space these huge boxes take up in vehicles when out for delivery. I’m very mindful of this when posting anything myself and like to choose companies who are thoughtful about packaging themselves. Bespoke ecommerce packaging is available to all retailers so buying from brands who have thought this through, and use a company who are all about eradicating single use plastics is such a great way to make a start!

Thinking about packaging is so important. It’s lifecycle before it gets to you, and after, something we throw away without concern but we must invest in doing things better!

When it comes to shopping it’s now common place to have your own bags – just a few years ago this wasn’t the case but since supermarkets began charging for bags we have all had to tow the line, had to think about it and been forced into doing so. This is a good thing and proves we can all do it but using our own minds to make these changes before we are told we have to is easy to do with a little preparation and thought too. Another great way to make eco savings when doing the shopping is to walk rather than drive. If you have a supermarket within reasonable walking distance then bin the bags entirely and invest in a shopping trolley to kill two birds with one stone and get a little exercise while saving the planet to boot!

Water waste is another big thing and something which as a family of 6 we are trying to be more mindful of. It’s very easy to shower for a lengthy period while you literally wash water down the drain. I’ve implemented a timed shower concept in our house and if you want to spend hours lathering up before you rinse then we have taught the children to turn the shower off in between washing and washing away. Simple, easy steps which become second nature and now we use less water which is also helpful for the old water meter! Another great water and energy saving tip is to only fill the kettle with the water you need!

Trying to save the planet also saves your pocket!

Any kind of energy costs money and environmental damage too. We now shut all the plugs off from stand by and are teaching ourselves this to become standard. For the most part it works and with learned behaviour it will stick. In the winter we are, for our own purse as well as everything else, wearing more layers instead of pumping out the heat and lighting the fire when we can too.

We car share for football, take the bus or ride bikes where possible. We have insulated our loft to retain heat and when I buy veg and fruit I buy non packaged if I can as well as trying to choose things which are in season and haven’t travelled. Everything has a footprint from the meat that we consume to the shoes that we wear and toys that the kiddos play with. Growing up I was in a very disposable world that I don’t want my children to continue so it’s about teaching them how to do things differently as a matter of course.

Always hard, often compromising and never perfect as I’ve demonstrated with my use of nappies however, I buy bars of soap and shampoo and am trying, trying, trying. To begin with the journey of anything from its manufacture to how it gets to you via delivery is always a good start I reckon and I’m here for any advice so if you have any more good ideas for families and reducing, re-using, recycling then they are greatly welcomed, I’m always up for trying to do things better!


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