At the moment, it can be hard to make planet-conscious choices at the supermarket, given the various supply difficulties that Covid 19 has brought about. But there are still so many things we can do around the house to help keep our environmental impact low.
The actions detailed below shouldn’t cost anything (with the possible exception of number 4), and in most cases should actually save you money by reducing consumption of the item in question.
The ideas below aren’t listed in any particular order. In terms of impact though, switching your energy supplier is probably going to be the best single thing you can do.
- Squish your toilet rolls. It sounds daft, but if you change the shape of the inner tube, you make it less likely to turn too far on the dispenser, leaving you with too much loo roll on your hands. This is especially good when dealing with small children. It seems like it wouldn’t make a difference, but I honestly notice when I forget to squish the tube as I replace it!
- Mark your kettle so you only boil what you need. Take your favourite cups, fill them with water, and pour this into your empty kettle, one at a time. Use a permenant marker pen to note the point the water comes up to after each one. I know some kettles come with ‘cups’ marked on them, but in my experience, these don’t match up to the bucket-like vessels I drink my tea from. Also, marking the kettle myself made me more aware of over-filling so I tend to take the time to fill to my own mark now.
- Switch your search engine to Ecosia. This is something you only need to do once, but after it’s done, the ad revenue your searches generate will go towards planting trees. I’ve been using it for years now and have no issues with it, but some people report that as it’s based on the Bing engine and not Google, that searches aren’t as… accurate? thorough? good? as they might be. As I say, I’ve never had an issue, but you could always use Ecosia to search Google at the start of each session – then you’re getting the best of both worlds? You can read more about it on Wikipedia – here.
- Switch to a green energy supplier. Again, this is a simple, one off act that you can do now and then forget about. I use Cheap Energy Club to keep me updated on the lowest price green provider. The beauty of looking for energy prices this way is that you’ll get an email if a cheaper provider becomes available, so it takes the hard work out of keeping your costs down.
And that’s it! Four simple things which don’t necessitate buying zero-waste alternatives, four simple things which are either free or will save you money, and four simple things you can do from your house!
Which actions would make your list? I’d love to hear if there are any other obvious things I could be doing! As ever, contact me here or on Twitter.