Do you want to be a little bit more environmentally friendly, without putting too much effort in? I’ve put together five easy environmentally friendly tips for everyone.
Here are five quick changes that you can easily make at home or work. As one of the big supermarkets have coined the phrase – “every little helps” when it comes to looking after our planet and its resources.
Re-use carrier bags
Plastic, paper and fabric bags can all be re-used. Of course, fabric bags are the most durable, but plastic bags are the cheapest (in terms of money and environmental credentials). Plastic bags are also the easiest to recycle – if you know how (see point 2)
TIP – as soon as you have emptied your bags after shopping, put them straight back into your car or handbag, so that you don’t forget them next time.
2) Recycle end-of-life bags
Most people do not realise that plastic bags can be easily recycled. They CANNOT be put into your recycling bin (unless your council allow it – but most do not). However, they can be recycled at most large supermarkets.
It’s true that sometimes you have to hunt out the bag recycling facilities but there are bins or cages inmost stores. For example, where I live the one in Morrison’s is near the toilets and at Tesco it is at the far end of the tills. These cages or bins accept carrier bags. They also accept food bags, such as bread and vegetable bags, other bags that you may get from shops and in the post with the recycling logo. Look for the letters LDPE. Supermarkets have their own recycling facilities at the back end of the store so I believe that they just get added to that recycling stream.
TIP – Fill one larger bag with bags and once in a blue moon take them with you when you do your shopping
3) Recycle batteries
Batteries are – as you can imagine – full of chemicals, hazardous materials and toxins. If they are not disposed of properly all of these hazards leach out. By recycling batteries properly, the metal is reclaimed and recycled and hazardous waste is disposed of safely.
Did you know that, legally, any shop must offer free collection of used batteries if they sell or supply 32kg or more of portable batteries per year. (One pack of 4 AA batteries per day equals about 32kg per year.) Again – shops do not always make their facilities easy to find, but as it is a legal obligation, the facility will be there somewhere!
TIP – stick an old envelope out of the way somewhere. Any time you have a dead battery drop it in there. When the envelope is full and you’re heading to the shops pop it in to any shop that sells batteries.
4) Take your recyclable waste home
We all know that “tourists” are renowned for leaving rubbish behind a beauty hot-spots. If you’ve ever looked at what people leave behind . This is because the rubbish is predominately from picnics or drinks. Unfortunately, most places do not have recycling facilities. Therefore, if you go out for a picnic, make a point of taking your recyclables home and putting them in your recycling bin.
TIP – take an empty bag on picnics, to put all of the single use plastic, paper, cardboard, glass and can waste in to take home and recycle.
5) Use more plastic
No – I haven’t gone mad!
Plastic is a great product. It is durable, lightweight and often space saving. Since I started making much more of an effort, I hardly ever use cling film. (Cling film is a nightmare product as it is very difficult to recycle domestically). If I have left over food it goes in an old take away tub; sandwiches also go in plastic tubs (or, of course, if it’s the end of the loaf, straight back into the bread bag); open a packet of something but won’t use it all – guess what – stick it in a tub; if I’m taking a bar of soap away (yes I try to avoid pump soap in bottles) then it too goes into a tub.
The point that I’m trying to make is that plastic is a material that can be re-used over and again. Even “single use” plastics! E.g. drinks bottles can be used as water bottles afterwards. And when plastic has reached its end of life, well then, it’s just perfect for recycling back into more plastic products.
TIP – wash out take away food pots and use them for all manner of things.
I hope that you have found these little environmentally friendly tips helpful. These are just things that I do in my everyday life and take very little effort. The photos are (as you can probably tell) not staged. I just whizzed around my home to take pictures to show how I do these things in every day life.
If you have read this blog with these environmentally friendly tips (yes that is my focus keyphrase, if you know SEO, lol) a little 👍🏻 on the page would be wonderful and encourage me to do more like it. Thanks for reading.