Hot Topic

Fifteen ways to cut your carbon footprint - how many of these could you start doing

Fifteen ways to cut your carbon footprint - how many of these could you start doing
  • Community Manager
  • 7079 replies

Did you know there are lots of ways we can cut our carbon footprint? 

There’s probably some you already do, and some are a bit trickier than others. But if we all took one or two more steps, how amazing would that be?

Read on!

So, ‘carbon footprint’ is of course a term used to describe the amount of greenhouse gasses, usually CO2, released into the atmosphere as a result of an individual’s, organisation’s, or nation’s actions, polluting the planet and causing climate change.

The biggest footprints are caused by companies dealing in dirty energy (the burning of fossil fuels); mass farming; land-use change (ie chopping down trees to make way for pastureland); industrial processes; waste.

But you and I can also play our part. 

None of us are perfect, so there’s no lectures or judgement here in the Pure Planet Community.:blush:

Here’s 15 ways suggested by Future Learn we can all make changes to reduce our personal carbon footprint. Give yourself one point for each one of the following you’ve already started doing. 

  1. Insulate your home. Insulating your loft and walls will retain heat during the winter, meaning you use less energy and so save money!  

  1. Switch to renewables like Pure Planet. I sure hope everyone gets a point here. Otherwise we need a talk. :wink:

  1. Buy energy efficient appliances. Things like LED light bulbs, and also look out for gadgets which use lots of power when on standby. Unplugging them when not in use is the simplest solution.

  1. Use less water. It’s energy intensive to transport, and to heat. Tips include turning off the taps when brushing your teeth, having short showers rather than baths, and only boiling the amount of water you need for a cuppa, instead of filling the kettle.

  1. Change your diet. This one’s controversial. But it’s true that farming meat and dairy needs a lot more land, energy and water than growing vegetables. Cattle also create a lot of methane gas. If you do eat meat, you can have half a point if you only buy from locally sourced and sustainable farms.

  1. Turn off the lights at work. A lot of us haven’t been to the office or workplace full time for nearly a year. But assuming we do go back, making sure lights and computers aren’t left on when not needed is an easy way to reduce your carbon footprint.

  1. Ditch paper for digital tools at work. As well as Zoom calls, there’s digital documentation and storage which reduces waste.

  1. Cycle and/or walk to work. Both are environmentally friendly and good for your health. 

  1. Reuse and recycle work materials. Any paper, packaging, food, old IT equipment, old furniture. All can either be reused or recycled.

Plastic on a beach. Not nice 
  1. Eliminate single-use plastic. This is a big one. Plastic’s really bad for our planet, polluting the oceans and local rivers. A simple way to cut back on plastic is to stop using disposable coffee cups and plastic bags. 

  1. Hold an awareness day. At school, at work, at home. Get talking - just like we do here in the Pure Planet Community!

  1. Get a compost. This is for your food waste. Probably going to be at home, but it could also work for the office. Gardeners love compost! So if you don’t use it, a neighbour might.

  1. Take local trips and holidays instead of jet setting abroad. Another one we’re all going to be doing more of for a while, thanks to Covid-19. But when things return to normal, we could do well by supporting UK tourism instead of jetting off to Spain.

  1. Carbon offset your journey. When you do fly, you can carbon-offset your journey. This is where you pay money on top of the cost of your ticket to fund projects aimed at reducing your carbon footprint, such as restoring forests.

  1. Pack a water bottle. It’s really healthy to drink lots of water, and if you keep a bottle in your daily bag, you don’t have to keep buying plastic containers.

How many points did you score? It would be interesting to know how many you’ve ticked off and which ones you think you’ll tackle next.

 

And if you’ve got any other tips for reducing your carbon footprint, please share them! :raised_hands:

Cutting your carbon footprint


16 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

D minus, huge room for improvement.

D minus, huge room for improvement.

No judgement @Bev :blush:

Which one(s) will you think of trying next?

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

I strongly need to start carrying water bottle. I have the fab backpack with the drink pockets, thanks to the PP kindness, yet STILL I carry lucozade. Yes I NEED luc, BUT BUT BUT I need to carry reusable water bottle too, instead of buying so many bottles of water 👍

Might think about (6). I sooooo love the ambience of all lights on, albeit dimmed, but does make for a cosy feel, from inside AND out, so I might fail on that one, but may just try. 

I got 7 points BTW. So, I’m no saint. But I think the community knew that already….

The one I’m going to tackle next is the same as @Bev - carry a water bottle. Now that it’s starting to warm up, my back’s on the mend, I’ll be out and about more.

I bought a reusable water bottle - it acts as a flask, so it keeps my water cool all day. It’s been fantastic, I bring it with me everywhere I go now! Whenever I don’t bring it I always regret it and am tempted to by a bottle of water :sweat_smile: . The one I bought looks really nice as well which makes me more keen to use it. 

I think we could do more about our diet by introducing more veggie (and vegan) meals into our weekly routine. We’ve started cutting down on produce from further afield, like avocados, and are really focusing on seasonal produce so I think the carbon footprint of our food is slowly decreasing which is something! 

I got 7, too, so there’s much more we could do! 

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

Good on ya, Nat 👍👏

Dya know what? It’s funny you mentioned the 🥑, cos I never really thought about where my veg came from, but I’d say in the last year, since the pandemic especially, I’ve sooooo been extra mindful of buying local. Some has still come from Spain and Peru, but a lot lot more of my choices have been local. It’s even tasting better but could be psychological 👏👍🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

I agree with you @Bev about the taste - I suppose if it’s fresher and hasn’t had to travel hundreds of miles it’s bound to be fresher?? I also love buying from our local fruit/veg shops, especially as we head into Spring and Summer! 

Local fruit and veg can probably make a big difference, as well as thinking about meat/dairy :slight_smile:

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

And before Covid of course, the local farmers markets with gorgeous fresh, local veg and produce 👏👍🍯🥕🥕🥕🥦🥦🥦🌶️🌶️🌶️🥒🥒🥒🍒🍒🍒🍏🍏🍏🍐🍐🍐🧀🧀🧀💕💕💕#goodtosupport

Badge +2

10 here.

Would be 11 if you count working from home but this is temporary so may not last. 

Plus going to holiday locally is on the agenda now is on the cards. 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿  sooooo many nooks and crannies of the UK to discover.

Badge +2

Not sure why my Welsh and Scottish flags changed to black and white there 🤔 

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

🤷‍♀️🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

They do indeed, Jo! How bizarre! 

10 here.

Would be 11 if you count working from home but this is temporary so may not last. 

Plus going to holiday locally is on the agenda now is on the cards. 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿  sooooo many nooks and crannies of the UK to discover.

Wow, 10 is seriously impressive stuff @LUCKY JO :sunglasses: you’ll have to teach us your ways!

I heard many places on the Scottish coast look like the Caribbean if you catch them on a sunny day… it’s getting the good weather that’s luck of the draw though. Completely agreed that lockdown has been a fantastic reminder of the beautiful areas we have on our doorstep - plus it cuts down your carbon footprint! Would you be looking at camping, or more hotel staycations? 

This is a great place for some staycation inspiration:slight_smile:

I’ve been trying to mostly eat produce that is in season. I agree with you @Bev and @Nataly it certainly tastes better too!

Going vegan always feels like a huge challenge due to my enormous love for cheese. I try to eat veggie as much as I can, but I always find myself reaching for the cheese! :cheese:

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

That’s the one thing that stops me Mads. I’m 99% vegan, but 1% vegetarian cheese. Vegan 🧀🧀🧀too awful 🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮

Vegan 🧀🧀🧀too awful 🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮

Agreed, it has a long way to go before I will be able to make the jump!

Reply