Winter changes how many individuals approach sustainability, walking instead of driving doesn’t seem quite as appealing when it’s bucketing with rain and it can be very tempting to turn on all the heaters in your home to combat the cold. We understand that it is hard so we've put together some eco-friendly tips that you can use at home this winter.
It’s well known that meat and other animal products are responsible for emitting substantial greenhouse gasses, one serving of meat can emit up to 20 times more greenhouse gasses than a serving of vegetables but we’re not here to lecture you about completely upheaving your diet if you eat animal products. Still enjoy eating meat every now and again is OK but think about how you can incorporate more delicious, meat-free meals into your diet this winter too. Think vegetarian nachos, vegetable soups with warm bread, pasta bakes, vegetarian curries or a vegetable lasagna. Why not try out a different vegetarian meal each week?
A lot of us are ordering takeaway from local businesses so consider trying out new vegetarian options from different local restaurants, and remember to ask the restaurant to skip giving you cutlery or other utensils as you can use reusable ones at home.
We have all been indoors a lot more recently and this has made online shopping even more accessible and tempting than ever. There’s nothing wrong with treating yourself but before you impulsively purchase six new hoodies, consider if you need it and the impact this will have on our planet. Did you know that 1kg of fabric can generate up to 23kg of greenhouse gasses? A great way to shop more sustainably online is to look at second-hand stores. You don’t necessarily have to search through racks of old clothing, you can buy unique secondhand clothing, often for very reasonable prices on apps such as Depop or Carousell. Alternatively, shop with more sustainable brands - they often call this out on their website. You can consider where clothing is manufactured, from what materials and whether they have been ethically certified (for example Fairtrade certified). After all, green is becoming the new black!
It can be tempting to turn on all the heaters in your home to their highest capacity but there are cheaper and more eco friendly ways you can stay toasty warm. Instead of first resorting to the heater, put on a dressing gown or some comfy jumpers with warm socks. Don’t forget to keep doors closed to retain heat in rooms and consider closing blinds or curtains to retain warmth. Cuddle up in blankets and drink some warm tea or coffee, try to only use a heater on low heat when truly necessary. The planet (and your bank account) will thank you.
There's no doubt making others happy can make you happy too, and when its cold and dreary outside, anything to lighten your mood is more than welcome! This year, instead of giving gifts wrapped in paper that will be thrown away as soon as it’s received, consider wrapping gifts in a scarf with a ribbon or repurpose and redecorate some newspaper or magazine pages. This can be a fun, creative activity whilst at home. Plus, if you’re stuck for any birthday or celebratory gift ideas, you can always consider giving a trace subscription to help offset a loved one’s carbon footprint this winter.