Monday, 13 May 2013

Day 13 - Go Green

Day 13 of rosalilium’s 'blog every day in May' challenge
Go Green
(Talk about being green, eco-friendly or ethical. What do you do to make a difference?)


We do always try and be "green" in whatever connotation that means. I know full well that the small things me and Andrew do may not change the world, but we can only try and do our little bit.

Flowering apple tree blossom
Nothing to do with recycling, we're just amazed that the blossom on our apple tree has finally flowered!


Anyway, these are some of the things we do to try and make a difference:

Shopping and Stuff
- we try not to buy too much in the first place
- with the exception of food, the majority of what we do buy is second hand
- a lot of our stuff is inherited
- 90% of the clothes in our wardrobe are second hand
- I mend clothes when they need fixing (although, I've never actually darned a sock...)
- things we don't need anymore either get charity shopped, freecycled or recycled
- through our local council we recycle: all plastic (except black plastic), tins, glass, batteries, foil, paper, cardboard and tetra-paks
- clothes that have no wearable use get made into rags for Andrew to clean the lorry
- we're avid supporters of our local library


Travel
- we only have one car between us
- we use public transport when we can
- we don't own Passports and therefore, don't fly anywhere
- our car has low emissions
 - we car share to work (there's usually 3 of us)


Food and Drink
- we try and grow our own vegetables
- we make the most of our apple tree in our back garden
- we try to buy local and British where we can and support our local farm shop
- food scraps go in our compost bin and non-compostable scraps (such as bones) go in our Council collected food waste bins
- we have our bulk food shopping delivered
- all our meals are planned two weeks in advance so we shop online with a list
- we only cook as much as we actually need
- we only boil as much water as we actually need
- we take our own lunch to work
- we always take our canvas bags to the supermarket

It was only a matter of time before my favourite musical comedian, Tim Minchin, found his way onto my blog...


Energy and Technology
- we have an energy monitor to keep a check on usage
- unless something breaks it doesn't get replaced, and even then only if it can't be fixed
- although we do have a tumble dryer, it's only used when absolutely necessary (which is not very often) and clothes are usually air-dried
- we have a "turn the lights off when you leave a room" policy in our house
- everything gets switched off and nothing is left on standby
- mobile phones and print cartridges are sent off for recycling
- computer discs are sent off for recycling
- we don't have a bath in our house, so only use a shower for a few minutes at a time
- everything gets washed in the washing machine at 30 °C
- the heating only gets switched on in November andf switched off again in March, the rest of the year round if it's cold, we use extra jumpers and blankets
- where possible all our light bulbs are energy saving
- our house is double glazed and insulated all over (you can tell whether a house is well insulated or not by watching how fast snow melts on their roof!)
- we have an 'A' rated energy efficient boiler


Paperwork
- we're on the Mailing Preference List so we receive less junk mail
- we only print where necessary and refill our print cartridges by hand
- stamps are donated to Guide Dogs for the Blind
- where possible, bills, bank statements, electoral roll registration, TV licence and other utility services are accessed and delivered online


Special Occasions
- a lot of our Christmas and Birthday presents are either handmade or vouchers for experiences
- bubble wrap, packaging, wrapping paper and ribbons are all saved for reuse
- my wedding dress was a catwalk designer dress from the Oxfam Bridal Boutique


There is probably a lot more we could do, but whatever we are doing is a start.



And just for good measure, here's a couple of recommended reads about our unsustainable consumer culture...

Enough by John Naish
Enough by John Naish
 
A fascinating read all about how to break free from the consumer culture - how to realise when we just simply have enough.
 
 
The Declaration by Gemma Malley
The Declaration by Gemma Malley
 
The first in a trilogy where Earth is over-populated, the life vividly depicted rings scarily true - unfortunately the storyline doesn't actually seem that far-fetched!
 
 
Both excellent reads!
 
 
Any other tips for 'going green'?
 



 

4 comments:

  1. This is really good and resourceful! I think everyone should try to start going more green, not only for the Earth but for their own self, too. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Absolutely - we should be doing it for ourselves as well as the planet. And it usually saves money! :-) x

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  2. P.S** I don't have too many tips but cutting out meat and dairy helps in so many ways people have no idea about.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you very much for all your lovely comments; I do have every intention of replying but sometimes life with a baby gets in the way...

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