I guess first you have to decide what does being sustainable mean to you? I’ve just googled the word sustainable to see if I can get a definitive one liner to include here – I can’t.
For me being sustainable is about making sure I minimise the negative impact I have in my environment and making sure that I’m not wasteful – easy for me as it usually results in saving money which resonates with me!
Being sustainable makes you passionate (or is it obsessive) about doing what is best for “The Planet”. Some have called me nerdy – how very dare they!! You have to be careful as you can easily overplay your hand (get in people’s faces) which has the opposite of my intention, which is to open people’s eyes, raise awareness and hopefully change behaviour. You will often find me looking in the waste bins in the kitchen at work muttering that people have put recyclable packaging in the wrong bin and actually sorting it into the correct bin. You will also find me during an early morning walk with my dogs picking up discarded fast food packaging and empty soft drinks cans from the pavement that have been discarded from car windows as they drive up my street. I consider that I get double brownie points as not only am I looking after my environment but I then place the can in my blue recycle bin.
When I go out for a drink DON’T JUST PUT A STRAW IN MY GLASS which tends to happen in the places I frequent. You have to remember when ordering your drink to specify “no straw”– please.
When I go shopping
- if it’s in black plastic I don’t buy it as it can’t be recycled.
- If I can buy without packaging, I do (usually vegetables/fruit/salad)
- I don’t buy bottled water – all my family members have refillable water bottles
- Never pay for plastic shopping bags – I don’t mean steal them either but remember bring them from home (I keep them in the boot of my car so I don’t forget).
- Don’t leave the lights on when there no one in the room (my mum used to tell me off for that).
- Don’t leave the tap running while cleaning your teeth.
- Shower don’t bath.
- Consider do you need to flush every time you use the toilet.
- The toilet!! I heard on the radio the other day during a discussion about reducing the amount of water we consume each day, “if it’s yellow, let it mellow. If it’s brown flush it down” – I can do that. I know us Brits don’t like to discuss lavatorial matters so some of you may have squirmed reading that one!
- Don’t buy “throw away” clothes and when you are ready discard shoes/clothes recycle them at the supermarket clothes banks.
- Recycle everything your local council will allow you to.
If you are not as bonkers as me, you now think I am – it’s never too late to start!!!