We are all concerned about protecting the earth, but what can we do to improve our environment, whether at home, work, or in the local community?
We’ve got some helpful hints and tips below for small changes you can make.
What is happening in the environment?
We are bombarded day in day out with messages of rising pollution levels and that time is running out. With such a ‘lack of time’ to take steps towards making a real impact on the outcome of global warming in the environment, what are we supposed to do? Whilst the shock tactic might be seen as the only way to promote positive change, it can also be one of the reasons that many feel their contribution is too small to help.
If a ship is taking on water and almost guaranteed to sink, would choosing to pail make much of a difference? If everyone on board the ship took action, then it is possible.
It is devastatingly true, that air and water pollution are still issues in newly industrialised and developing countries, and that over a million sea birds and mammals are killed due to plastic pollution each year. What can be said is that these issues are not going unnoticed and by taking progressive steps saving and improving lives, and respecting the environment on earth, is fully achievable.
What has contributed or caused pollution and damage to the environment?
Have you ever heard of root cause analysis? Looking at the initial issue that caused a bigger problem at the end?
For air and water pollution, the obvious root cause is human activity and the decisions we have made, but by breaking that down into specific activities, small changes can be identified leading to us making a big difference.
How we dispose of our waste; whether it is human, chemical, or animal. Finding simple yet effective means of reducing our emissions; transportation emissions from travel, our choice of energy supply, or even the types of toiletries and cleaning supplies we use.
Governments implement legislation, businesses carry out analyses and CSR initiatives, but your contribution doesn’t have to be as grand to make a positive impact.
Small everyday changes you can make to improve your environment and reduce pollution.
Whether it is potted plants in a shared courtyard, an urban jungle of wildflowers at the end of the garden, or a window box on your 12th story apartment, there are always possibilities when it comes to going green, literally.
Plants are extremely beneficial for you and your environment.
Studies have shown that having plants inside the home or office increases oxygen levels resulting in better concentration and reduced levels of stress, with office workers even taking fewer sick days and having a greater sense of well-being.
Aside from their health benefits for us, both interior and exterior plants have some considerable health benefits for the environment on earth. Trees and potted plants both contribute to better air quality by helping to remove gases and airborne particle pollution through their leaves.
Are you buzzing about the benefits of plants? Alright, forgive the pun. In all seriousness though, choosing the right plants to help with bee conservation is an important factor to saving and improving the environment. Honeybees are the world’s most important pollinator of many of the crops that we rely on, that avocado on toast you enjoy so much wouldn’t be so readily available if it wasn’t for the humble bumblebee.
Talking of bees, have you ever thought about having your own bee hive? Providing a home for these little critters is a sure fire way to help keep their numbers steady and improve your local environment. There are numerous sites offering handy hints and tips on how to get started and aside from the obvious benefits, who doesn’t love fresh honey?
One word. Plastic.
The materials needed to create it, the thousands of years it will take to decompose, the risks it poses to the health of environment and wildlife… there really isn’t a good point in relation to our dependency on plastic.
Luckily, many individuals seems to be waking up to the crying need for sustainability and are choosing to replace their plastic straws, carrier bags and bottles for ecologically friendly items. A small investment of time and money can go a long way to reducing our single use plastic consumption.
We know that almost 70% of what you buy from mainstream supermarkets more often than not comes in plastic packaging, so if you can’t choose an unwrapped alternative then make sure you are recycling your plastic items properly and please, please always cut the rings holders off canned drinks and plastic rings from bottles.
Marine life and our coastal environments need us to do our best in ensuring its health, so why not look for a local beach clean event near to you and make a day of it with the family? As well as helping to remove waste from the local environment, it is a great way to get out for some fresh air and get moving! Health benefits for you and the environment.
There is a way to recycle almost anything these days, so it is one of the easiest steps to improving the environment and reducing waste pollution. The first obvious recycling is that of everyday household wastes such as plastics, glass and paper; just make sure to pop it in your recycling bin!
Suitable leftover food and non-perishable items can be donated to shelters and other local charities, just type a quick search into your search engine and it will locate the nearest drop point, or if the food is not suitable for donation then why not start a small compost box in your back garden? Composting can enrich your garden soil and reduce your carbon footprint in one small action!
There are many other recycling options, such as old books to your local library or community centre, unwanted clothes to a charity shop or charity clothes bin, and even old tools!
We’ve left this one until last as it has been drilled into many of us from a young age, but it is absolutely still worth mentioning. Reducing our water and energy consumption will drastically reduce carbon footprint and improve the earth’s environment.
It really is a simple as choosing energy saving light-bulbs and electrical appliances, switching appliances off at the wall instead of leaving them on standby, choosing a quick shower over a bath a couple of times a month, and not running the tap when cleaning your teeth or washing the dishes.
We could write an entire essay on all the small steps that lead to a big difference in reducing pollution levels, but we hope that some of these have given you good food for thought.
Until next time,
The V-TUF Family.