Help me be better at low impact living!
There is this common misconception that a low impact life requires you to be an off-grid strict vegan who makes everything from scratch. Not true. You too can start making some really easy changes to your world, which all adds up to making it a better place (or at least stopping it from getting worse!) I have been researching online and scrolling the accounts of sustainable eco-warriors to try and find where my place is going to be - achievably- as I really want to be on the lower impact side of life!
Have you felt eco-anxiety too? its where one falls into a form of depression at the thought of the doom our planet is facing, if we don't do something soon - but feeling so small at the base of this monstrous dilemma. Symptoms include:
- anger or frustration, particularly toward people who don’t acknowledge climate change or older generations for not making more progress
- fatalistic thinking
- existential dread
- guilt or shame related to your own carbon footprint
- post-traumatic stress after experiencing effects of climate change
- feelings of depression, anxiety, or panic
- grief and sadness over the loss of natural environments or wildlife populations
- obsessive thoughts about the climate
But hey, guys, we can make a difference, and you can't fail.
First of all, consider where you actions exist on the spectrum of how negatively (or positively) affect the environment. The low impact lifestyle is built with each and everyone of us making a helpful change. Whether that's composting food waste, buying sustainable-made clothing or switching off the lights and burning a candle! Ditching plastic bags and turning off the air conditioning and opening a window instead, may seem small in the grand scheme of things, but its these little sustainable choices you make that add up quickly.
Creating your own house hold where everyone works together to make eco decisions is the best way to scale your efforts.
Here's some excellent achievable tips you can start with today.
- DONT BUY plastic food storage bags and containers instead bring or buy reusable silicone, glass or biodegradable bamboo.
- Use refillable containers for your soap, spice, grains, coffee, think creatively how you can make something refillable.
- Make your own cleaning products etc.
- compost food waste or bokashi bin
- Think twice before turning on air con, or heater - how else can you regulate your temps first?
- Turn off the tap! Stop running the tap while cleaning teeth, dishes etc. WATER IS PRECIOUS.
- Avoid anything prepackaged like mini chippies for school lunches, instead make a batch of salty popcorn for them in their reusable container.
- Cook using fresh seasonal ingredients (local is best)
- Car pool - one car house hold - work a way to use them less.
A major one that I am all for of obviously is SHOP LOCAL.
It takes an enormous amount of energy and resources to transport products around the world. Global shipping is a significant driver of climate change due to black carbon emissions, refrigerants, poor fuel efficiency.
Choosing to shop local not only helps the environment, but helps support your own communities and small businesses (like ORA!). Next time you are about to buy something from (you arent even sure where) stop and think, can I source this item in my own country? or - find it second hand somewhere (even better).
This applies to food too, get as much food as you can locally, go to your local farmers market, co-op shop, share a shop of bulk with your neighbours or a friend.
Be a conscious consumer.
Marketers have latched on to the eco-friendly trend, but not in a good way in some cases there are greenwashing out there. Using words like 'green; 'organic' , 'sustainably sourced' have been showing up everywhere, make sure you look at the details, read the ingredients, look at peoples ' about' page and make a decision if you can trust that brand. When you buy locally, you often can feel its easier to trust the brand and often you will begin to build a relationship with the seller (like I hope to think of all my customers as friends who know me). But above all else, make sure you are buying things that you need, or bring you value. Ask yourself, is this a reusable item when it is gone, can I refill, is this made sustainable, will I wear this more than 2-3 times, and finally, remember the three R's, which starts with REDUCE. Reuse, recycle (at the very last).
Quick reference of terms:
Eco friendly - is the broad term that mean not harmful to the environment. It's applied to everything from cleaning products to clothing.
Sustainable - describes a system of balance, where today's behaviors don't negatively affect the future quality of life. Sustainable farming, tourism and other things ensure we preserve natural resources for years to come.
Low impact - means reducing the impact on the environment, similar to eco-friendly, but with bigger emphasis on cutting down the use of natures resources.
Zero waste- is all about creating as little rubbish as possible. The ultimate goal is having zero waste, but as you may find, the current economy and capabilities makes this one damn hard.
References & notes from www.lowimpactlove.com , also find 20 items that should be on your 2021 list: