Here at Forever Green, we understand that the first steps to a sustainable lifestyle may be a little daunting. It is for this reason why we are today putting forth a five step challenge to get you started. These are not huge steps either but will certainly put you on the right track and we really believe that collectively this will make a huge difference.
1. Reduce, Reuse & Recycle
One way to reduce is by avoiding product unnecessarily wrapped in plastic, we cannot control how large companies package their food, but we can certainly control whether we buy it or not.
A change in our buying habits really does affect how companies with bad environmental practices behave, they look at the bottom figure and when sales are affected they pay attention. If you are looking for an example of what a poorly packaged product is, just look below, if only the peeled orange had some kind of natural protective layer.
The kind of packaged products to avoid
A great example of reusing is with plastic bags, you really do not need them, just stop. Get into the habit of taking a reusable shopping bag with you. A great benefit to this is that, at 10 cents per bag, it is not long before you start saving money whilst doing right by the planet.
Recycling is self-explanatory, separate your waste items and also look into composting, it's fantastic if you are into gardening and your plants absolutely love it.
2. Reduce Meat Consumption
This is a big one for many people, but we are not suggesting switching to vegetarianism. Just try to reduce your meat consumption, many are opting for a 'no meat Monday' which again collectively makes a huge difference.
This is because not only acres of trees are being cut down to make space for pasture land, but because the livestock is currently responsible for almost 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions, this is expected to go up to around 50% by 2050. This is an unsustainable trend that needs to be stemmed somehow.
3. Shop Locally
Shopping locally not only supports local jobs and businesses, but ensures that produce is not shipped from the other side of the world when it is produced in your own town. Another benefit to shopping locally is the produce is normally very fresh as it has not had a long journey to get to you.
Smaller businesses in today's age of consumerism don't have much of a fighting chance against large supermarkets, but they have much better business practices environmentally, so go ahead and support your local stores.
4. Reusable Bottle
It is good practice to never leave home without a reusable bottle, the use of plastic in general is already a looming crisis. It is entirely avoidable with a little forethought.
One of the largest contributors to plastic waste
A good bottle can last for years, with the average water bottle costing €1.50 each, think about the amount of money and plastic waste you can save just by making this small change.
5. Shop Smart
Excess consumerism is a key factor in unsustainability. Buying in excess increases the likelihood of your product doing going to waste. However, buying only what you need can save waste and money. With a little planning you will know exactly what you need for your weekly shop and be well on your way to a more sustainable lifestyle.
So start today, with this five step challenge, tell your friends and family about it and encourage them to do the same. Collectively we can make a huge impact.
Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together