Your guide to sustainable living
There are lots of ways that every single one of us can become more sustainable. Even small changes can make a difference to the planet. Here are some ideas to get you on the path to sustainable living.
Sustainability is a general term and can refer to many things. It relates to making life choices that reduce a negative impact on the environment. As well as being in harmony with nature, sustainability also involves maintaining a lifestyle that reduces the environmental threat for future generations.
Grow your own
Sustainability often goes hand in hand with self-sufficiency, since you are making and producing things yourself that do not rely on consuming resources that may have been transported across land or sea. One of the simplest ways to become more self-sufficient is to grow your own fruit or vegetables. Most of us might not have the time or space to become completely self-sufficient, but even growing just a few edible plants can be rewarding and positive for the environment. Even if you have not got a garden, plant a few pots of herbs on the windowsill.
A surprising number of things can be added to a compost bin, including fruit and vegetable peelings, garden waste, coffee grounds, paper, cardboard and even the contents of your vacuum cleaner. Avoid sending these items to the landfill and make your own garden compost instead.
Get some chickens
If space allows, keeping chickens can be a really rewarding experience that sets you on the path to sustainable living. There is no better feeling than being able to eat freshly laid eggs from your own flock. Even if keeping hens is not an option, buy free-range, organic eggs from the local farm shop, as you can guarantee the chickens have not been reared in unfavourable conditions.
Before you throw something in the bin, get into the habit of thinking how you might be able to reuse it or refashion the item into something with a completely different purpose. Plastic containers can make good storage cartons, wooden pallets can be transformed into a table or chair, and an old jumper could be rehashed into a pillowcase, for example. Let your imagination run free and save on waste at the same time.
An important part of living sustainably is about making strong connections with others, so that you can share a common purpose for the good of the local community and environment. This could be as simple as getting to know your neighbours, taking part in local support groups or community projects, or taking on an allotment plot.
Get a bike
Living sustainably involves thinking about ways you can reduce your impact or carbon footprint on the environment, and there are tons of things you can do. One easy and accessible option is to cycle more instead of using the car. Cycling is not only fun, it is loaded with health benefits and, most of all, does not require filling up with petrol!