Since the 1960’s, air travel has been our number one choice when traveling, whether on business or for pleasure. It is by far the most time efficient way of traveling long distances, but is it really that true when it comes to short distances? Air travel is one of the worst sources of pollutants. Traveling by train, on the other hand, requires far less toxic fuels than airplanes and it gets you by faster than you think. Try a traincation for your next holiday.
2. Quality over price
Garment production requires huge amounts of water, energy, raw material and chemicals which all have a negative impact on the environment. When buying garments of poor quality based on the low price, take the price of destroying the environment into account. When buying clothes, consider the quality and durability of the garment. Quality products will save you money since they last longer.
3. Sell, swap and buy smart
If you’ve bought a product of good quality, it is likely that the product will outlive your interest. Over time your interest, style or need for certain things might change. Instead of keeping clothes, tools, sports equipment and other goods in storage, the products can be sold to another user on the secondhand market. Buying and selling secondhand will not only save emissions; it will also save you time and money.
4. Eat the season
All food that we find on the shelves in the supermarket has been transported from the place it was grown. A lot of food that we today find is grown in countries far across the world and is picked once still unripe in order to survive the long journey to the countries in which it is sold. Seasonal food grown in its natural habitat, needs fewer pesticides, artificial lighting, and watering. By buying locally produced and in season food, it not only tastes better, it has more nutritional value and the shorter transport has a far less negative impact on the environment.
5. Skip traffic by going public
In modern day society, cars are no longer a luxury. If you are in a big city, on a highway or stuck in traffic and look at cars passing by, you will be surprised of how many vehicles that only carry one passenger. No wonder we experience traffic jams. Additionally, cars are one of the biggest causes of pollutants in cities. Instead of getting stuck in traffic, choose public transport, it is a more environmentally friendly alternative and gets you by quicker and cheaper than by car.
Food waste is a growing problem and it is estimated that around one-third of all food that is produced is wasted. The main contributors are consumers who buy too much food and throw it away as soon as it’s passed its expiration date. Instead of relying on best-before or expiration dates, food should be smelled and tasted before decided on whether it’s gone bad. Instead of outliving our resources we should consume thoughtfully and think about our planet. Buy and throw away less food.
7. Reduce, reuse, and recycle
Every time we buy something new, raw material needs to be extracted and processed, goods need to be manufactured and the ready-made product needs to be packaged and shipped to a store where it’s available for purchase. Emissions and pollutants are generated during all stages of creating a new product. Goods that are no longer functional, in use or wanted should be recycled and not discarded. This will save raw material from being extracted and energy from goods not needing to be manufactured. By purchasing recycled goods, fewer emissions and toxins are produced and you contribute to saving our planet at the same time.
8. Go green!
Traditional sources of energy are huge contributors to climate change. We rely on electricity in our everyday life but we hardly think about the way it is produced or the emissions it creates. Renewable sources of energy produce electricity with far less environmental impact and without producing CO2. By switching to green energy, you will be supporting the use of our planet’s powers to create energy instead of draining its resources.
9. Earth-friendly products
Chemicals and substances in cleaning and hygiene products are effective for killing germs and bacteria. They are also harmful to the environment and difficult for water treatment plants to purify. If let out into nature or unable to purify, hazardous substances can pollute people and our surroundings. By choosing environmentally friendly alternatives, ecosystems, biodiversity, and acidification will be kept intact and you will reduce the negative effect cleaning products has on the environment.
10. Meat-free Monday and low carbon diet
Meat consumption, which is at its all time peak, plays a significant role in our actions to improve our climate. By changing our eating habits and excluding meat from our diet one time a week, we can substantially reduce greenhouse gases caused by livestock. By choosing a low carbon diet overall, you can easily reduce your environmental carbon footprint. To demonstrate the environmental impact of different foods we have compared three popular meals: Spaghetti bolognese, fish & chips and a vegetarian salad. The numbers are based on the amount of carbon emissions it takes to produce a portion of 500 grams. Food processing and transport are not included in the calculations.