As a Collective we love to collaborate and work with others on the common goal of living more sustainably and reducing waste to landfill. This blog was written by Life Before Plastic, a Manchester based plastic free shop that works with over 100 independent UK brands. Sisters Trina and Charlie started LB4P out of their own mission to create a more ethical and sustainable way to shop.
Switch up your routine and join the sustainable living movement.
Being more sustainable doesn’t have to be a difficult, life changing experience. Reducing your impact on the planet can be done in a few simple steps that you can implement into your everyday life.
In this guide, we’re sharing all the details of how you can reduce your impact and make your lifestyle that little bit greener.
1. Shop Second Hand Fashion
Fashion uses a high level of energy to produce, with the fashion industry producing around a 10th of the world’s carbon emissions. Alongside the carbon pollution, fast fashion is also responsible for polluting waterways through the dyeing process that contaminates fresh water.
We all need to wear clothes, and a simple way to keep consuming clothes is to be considerate when purchasing, and thinking about the 30 wear test. This test is only purchasing where you honestly think that you will wear the item at least 30 times. An even more sustainable way to wear fashion is to not buy anything new. Second hand fashion is much more sustainable as it is in the circular system for much longer, is often repaired and loved by multiple owners.
2. Quit Plastic
While we often talk of plastic pollution, we still see single-use plastic being used where it shouldn’t be. It’s estimated that there are around 51 trillion pieces of micro plastic within our ocean and with less than half of the plastic we use being recycled in the UK, it’s not difficult to see that plastic is a problem.
Reducing the amount of plastic you’re using no longer has to be difficult. There are plenty of eco, plastic-free shops that sell everyday items without plastic at affordable prices where you don’t even have to leave the comfort of your house to make a sustainable change.
3. Take Shorter Showers
Even in the UK, the climate crisis ensures that water shortage will soon be an issue. The 2022 South West drought is one example of what is to come. Combined with population growth and our excessive use of water, we may soon struggle to have enough fresh water.
To be more sustainable for our future use of water, you can reduce the amount of water you use. One easy way to do this is to reduce the amount of showers you have per week, limit the time you are showering for and even better still, collect the water that you don’t use when the shower is warming up. You can fill a bucket and reuse this water to flush the toilet or water your plants.
4. Shop Independent
With the current economic crisis, shopping locally is more important than ever. Monopolies and large companies can damage the economy as they control the price of products and the methods of which a product is made. In general, large companies are driven more by profits than small local businesses who are more likely to look to do good in their community.
By supporting small, local businesses, every pound that is spent feeds back into the local economy. Local businesses lead to more job prospects in the area, and an increase in the value of the area. It’s even simple to shop locally as both you and the products don’t need to travel far, reducing your carbon footprint.
5. Eat Less Meat
The production of meat for human consumption causes degradation to the environment as pressure is put on the land for space for animals and for food for these animals to consume. A large amount of water is required to rear these animals, it takes 2,500 gallons of water to produce 500g of meat while production of 500g of wheat uses only 25 gallons of water.
A simple way to cut down on your meat consumption is to start with meatless Mondays, setting a specific day or few days when you don’t consume meat. This concept allows you to slowly build up a collection of vegetarian or vegan recipes. Even decreasing your consumption by one day a week will reduce the demand on meat production and start to change our food production systems.