Climate Change: How we can change our lifestyle to help

by | 21 April 2024 | Environment, Sherwood

Here are some of the key measures as individuals we can take to minimise climate change:

Reduce fossil fuel use: One of the easiest options is to reduce energy consumption around the home by switching off unused lights and equipment and using energy efficient products. Make sure that our homes are efficiently insulated with the recommended loft and wall cavity insulation and green or energy efficient windows that transmit the least amount of heat and reduce home energy output. Opt for using a microwave instead of an oven.

Ideally, to reduce household emissions we should replace all gas boilers with heat pumps powered with solar-charged batteries. Most suppliers now offer green energy tariffs. Where possible we need to push the growth of grid renewables.

We should consider moving to lower emission vehicles, or even better choose to walk, cycle or use public transport whenever possible. Reduce all flights to a minimum and eliminate all private flights. In addition turn off the ignition in the car to eliminate emissions when idling.

Change our shopping habits: We should reduce purchases to essentials and where possible reuse, or recycle items. As a minimum we should buy organic, certified-sustainable products. We should refuse single use plastics and swap plastic for eco-friendly alternatives (plastic is made from fossil fuels). Alternate products are now available made from bamboo hemp or recycled materials. We should replace technology and old items only when they become unfixable or cannot be recycled.

Change our diet: A mainly plant-based diet would drastically reduce emissions, air and land pollution, deforestation, fertiliser use and diet-related diseases. Next to home heating and transport, this is probably the most effective change we could make! Try meat-free days; plant-based eat-out options. Get used to planning meals – a whopping third of food gets wasted! Food systems emit 30% of global greenhouse gasses.

We should be more conscious of what we are eating and reject non sustainable food especially fish, and food with ingredients like palm oil. Palm oil is in around 50% of processed food. We should buy certified produce, bake our own cakes and cookies.

Look after our surroundings: We need to protect existing mature trees and green spaces from destructive development and restore urban yard spaces back to nature. To help the environment we could plant for wildlife and support local tree planting schemes. We could reduce plastic pollution and littering and set up local litter picking events. One of the biggest problems is the use of toxic chemicals in the home and garden. Another way we can help is to lobby councils to do the same.

For more information, find us on Facebook: Sherwood Forest FoE or email: sffofe@btinternet.com.

Pauline Meechan
Sherwood Forest Friends of the Earth