“The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.” – Robert Swann.
In our day-to-day lives, living sustainably consists of being conscious of what we consume, buy, use, how we commute, and our habits in general. To live more sustainably, the key is to learn how to reduce our carbon footprint. Our carbon footprint is the total greenhouse emissions, including carbon dioxide and methane, that we produce as individuals. By working to lower our carbon emissions individually, we can help prevent global warming and climate change. So, here are some day-to-day tips on how to reduce your carbon footprint. These are some simple ways to help lessen our impact without costing the earth.
How to Reduce Carbon Footprint
Eat Less Meat
By replacing meat with plant-based alternatives, think lentils, beans, and plants, you can help save the planet by helping reduce carbon and greenhouse gas emissions. According to the Vegetarian Society, the farming production process actually “totals 30% of all global greenhouse gas emissions.” Fortunately, there are also further benefits to a plant-based diet beyond sustainability purposes.
Avoid Palm Oil
In terms of sustainability, palm oil is a huge no-no. This is a result of the large-scale devastation of forests that the process of palm oil extraction entails. It’s the cause of widespread habitat loss for endangered species including rhinos, elephants, and orangutans. When shopping, check the label for palm oil or research and support brands that don’t use palm oil.
Carpooling and Cycling
Carpooling is a great way to get to the office with colleagues who also share a similar route to you. Instead of making several simultaneous journeys, why not get together and organise the commute collectively in one vehicle? In terms of travel in Europe, there is also a great carpooling service called BlaBlaCar. This French company operates in several countries in Europe including Spain, Portugal, and Turkey. Car sharing facilitates travel and reduces our collective carbon footprint.
For short journeys, having a bike is a great way to travel sustainably. What’s more, having a bike is so much cheaper than going by car, forget paying for petrol expenses. Not only does cycling have zero emissions, but it also means you will be more active and get moving.
Cook with the Lid on
Cooking with the lid on your pots and pans or even using a steam cooker is a great way to conserve energy. Covering your pots requires less cooking time and, in turn, less energy to cook. Not only will it help cook your food quicker, but it will also help save energy. It’s a win-win!
Just 1 litre of oil poured down the kitchen sink can contaminate up to 1 million litres of the Earth’s water. By recycling cooking oil, we can help prevent severe environmental damage as well as that dreaded drain blockage. Recycled oil can actually be used to produce fuel or even fertilizer, so making that trip to the oil recycling point is definitely worthwhile.
Did you know that a plastic bottle takes around 450 years to decompose? For this reason, it’s worth investing in a reusable drinking bottle. It will save you money on buying bottled water, while it also prevents one-use-only plastic purchases.
Although turned off at the switch, all plugged-in devices actually consume some energy known as “standby” energy loss. So, do not be deceived by the fact that your device is turned off, it can still sneakily keep drawing power.
Support Green Businesses
Whether it be beauty brands, food-related, or even a local business, what better way to invest your money than knowing that you are helping protect the planet? Look for sustainable brands and search for any eco-friendly businesses in your local area to get collaborating. Plus, this way you might avoid spending spree guilt!
I hope these simple ways to lead a more sustainable life have been of use to you. These are just some of the many ways of how to reduce your carbon footprint. Comment below and let me know your latest low impact lifestyle change or choice.