Earth Day is celebrated on 22nd April and this year, there is an extra special twist because this is its 50th Anniversary year. Like many people, you will to do your bit, no matter how big or small, to contribute. This year, the theme is climate change an issue that we are yet to truly take action to slow and reverse. So what changes can you make at home to help the earth?
- Environmentally friendly, non-toxic products
Take a look at the cleaning fluids and product you use and, just for a moment, appreciate the number of chemicals that are used in one bottle. Ditch your usual products, opting for those that are known to be environmentally friendly or, better still, consider how some everyday natural ingredients can create just as an effective clean in your home.
- Swap to LED bulbs
If you still have the traditional bulb in some light fittings, now is the time to make the change to long-lasting eco-friendly ones. LEDs are also an option. As well as reducing your carbon footprint, you’ll save money on energy too.
- Use cloth towels for cleaning
Wave goodbye to paper kitchen towel and wipes and replace with cloths that you can wash and reuse time and again. When they are no longer fit for use, recycle them as they can be made into insulation and all manner of other things.
- Buy local
Small, independent shops need your custom more than ever, but you will find that some of these delicatessens, butchers and grocers will source their products from local producers. That means a lot fewer food miles, so you're not just supporting your community, but helping that footprint be just a little bit smaller!
- Fix it, not throw it!
With the birth of rampant consumerism, came the ‘throwaway culture’. Too often we hear from manufacturers that something ‘isn’t worth fixing’ and we're all guilty of the same habit. This is being challenged and so rather than throwing something away when it malfunctions, fix it or upcycle it.
- Buy reclaimed wood furniture
The epitome of upcycling, reclaimed wood furniture is made from hardwoods that have been salvaged from buildings and other areas, such as railway lines, old industrial buildings, barns and so on. Beautifully and lovingly crafted, reclaimed wood furniture is growing in popularity. From reclaimed wood dining table or rustic coffee table to an industrial dining table made from reclaimed wood or kitchen sideboard, aged wood repurposed for today's way of life adds character and warmth to a home.
- Compost food scraps
Minimise food wastage by buying only what you need but when you do have kitchen scraps, compost them in the garden. The heat from the breaking down process makes it into a rich fertiliser for the garden. If you have a glut of it, why not share it with your neighbours?
- Turn off electronic gadgets
From TVs on your rustic TV stand left on standby to gadgets being plugged in for longer than they need to be, tempering our use of electricity will have a major impact on the environment. It will also save you money. If we all did this, the earth would thank us for it!
Bonus tip: plant a tree!
Your garden, patio or yard is a great tool to offset your carbon footprint and to also help the earth. Plant a native tree – great for soaking up carbon dioxide but also great for local and native wildlife too.
Happy Earth Day everyone!