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8 sustainable habits to adopt

10/03/2022

Easy ways to be more sustainable at home.

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It can be hard to know where to start with making a difference to the environmental issues we currently face, but it doesn’t need to be overly complicated. The more that we start changing our individual behaviour, the greater flow on effect it will have towards creating large scale change.

Here are 8 things you can do right now to move towards being more sustainable at home and in your life generally.

1. Overhaul your kitchen

Food prep, cooking and storage offer some of the biggest opportunities for going green. Next time you need to stock up on utensils or storage items, opt for a bamboo or wooden chopping board over plastic, ditch clingwrap for beeswax and invest in different-sized reusable ziplock bags instead of disposable ones. For food storage, opt for silicon, glass or metal containers rather than plastic.

2. Save all your glass jars

Stop slinging them into the recycling. Jars have so many incredible uses you might not have considered. Use them as glasses or for preserving and canning, to pack upside-down salads for work, to freeze food or to cart to a bulk store to fill up and save on packaging. Clean jars can also be used to store things like toothbrushes and pens, as a rustic vase for flowers, or to store snacks in the pantry. And keep a pile of jars on hand for food gifts (no one ever said no to a jar of homemade rocky road with a big bow around it, right?)

3. Grow an edible garden

Even the tiniest outdoor space can be used to grow food. At the very least, start with a herb garden so you’ve always got fresh herbs to snip rather than buying plastic-wrapped supermarket versions. To go one step further, a small compost pile or worm farm can take all your biodegradable kitchen scraps – and the liquid gold it makes can fertilise your plants.

4. Create new grocery habits

Re-using shopping bags is something we should all be doing, but why not get into the habit of ordering fresh to further minimise packaging and food waste? There are heaps of small businesses out there fighting food waste and supporting local farmers with gorgeous produce boxes often delivered right to your door.

5. Become a sustainable shopper

Food aside – how else can you tweak your spending habits to help the planet? Obviously swapping to more ethical brands when buying clothes is a good start, but you could also buy less, buy more second-hand and get as much use out of your items as possible. If you are tempted by online purchases, make a rule to leave items ‘in the cart’ for a few days, which gives you breathing space to figure out if you really need to buy it.

6. Change how you clean

Switching to environmentally-friendly cleaning products that are made from recycled, refillable containers is a good first step and there are so many companies in this space now making life easier and healthier for us at home. Sub out cleaning products for essential oils or pantry staples such as vinegar, baking soda and lemon. Using an energy and water efficient dishwasher for full loads can also save more water than washing your dishes in the sink, and visiting an eco-friendly car wash can also help reduce your environmental impact. 

7. Go digital

Contact your provider to swap out your paper bills for emails to cut down on paper waste, including your banking statements. Use your app instead to view your statements online, track where your money is going and keep up to date with where you’re at with any loan repayments.

8. Keep educating yourself

Even if we think we’re doing enough, we can always do more – and there are so many initiatives out there to learn from. Check out podcasts, books and documentaries for some inspiration and start conversations in your local neighbourhood. If you don’t have access to a garden or compost, chances are there’s a community garden or even a school initiative you could get on board with.

This article is intended to provide general information of an educational nature only. Information in this article is current as at the date of publication.

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