Right now, there’s a huge shift happening across the world; for the better.
More and more individuals, families and businesses are working their way toward being more sustainable.
From something as simple as doing away with the single-use plastic bag, to going completely waste free, or investing in businesses that act more sustainably and ethically, it’s a welcome shift for planet earth. It’s also an exciting one.
As the predictions about the impact on our home planet get worse and worse, 2019 is the year to join in.
To make the transition easier, I asked each of my colleagues here at Goodments what their top tips are for living more sustainably in 2019.
Here’s what the team has to share.
Tom, Goodments CEO and Co-founder
My belief is that we can all have an impact through our actions. It’s becoming more clear that we cannot simply recycle our way out of the problem, so if we and avoid certain things and reduce our usage of others then companies will respond and stop producing them.
The more plastic you re-use, the less plastic that needs to be produced, same with petrol and energy etc.
My philosophy is to be conscious of each decision you make but don’t worry about not being perfect.
- Cut out as much plastic as possible. You don’t need a plastic bag for your broccoli. Bring a reusable recycled or non-plastic bags for fruit and veg.
- Get a worm farm for food, paper and cardboard to reduce your waste.
- Don’t think you need to sacrifice quality or performance. There is a more sustainable alternative out there that will be just as good! This is true of my approach to investing.
- Lay off the cows! Eat less red meat and consider drinking less milk. Oatmilk is the most sustainable option at the moment
- Avoid everyday products that use ingredients that have a huge impact on the environment such as palm oil and almonds. They have devastating consequences.
- Buy second hand when you can. There is great stuff out there in Facebook groups and Gumtree.
Start with one thing, tackle it and move onto the next. You can’t do it all at once.
Babar, Head of Trading Systems
I’ve made many small lifestyle changes that all help towards a more sustainable lifestyle. These are my tips for 2019:
- Go paper free. An easy way to start this is to stop mailing letters if possible and opt to receive your bills via email instead of paper bills in the mail.
- Install water efficient shower heads. You can pick these up for pretty low prices and they’ll both save you money in the long run and save on water usage. It’s a win-win.
- Choose to use cold water when running the clothes washer rather than running hot cycles.
- Upgrade to LED lights, where possible, as they’re more energy efficient.
- Use washable cloths instead of paper towels.
Small and consistent changes are the key to a more sustainable lifestyle.
Tracey, Head of Design
Here’s what Tracey had to say.
- I like to choose food products that have minimal or no plastic packaging. Shopping at bulk food stores can be a good start.
- Recycle your soft plastics at the big red bin at your supermarket if possible
- If you have a baby, try modern cloth nappies instead of disposables. It’s more washing but saves thousands of nappies (yep!) from being thrown into landfill.
- Get rid of the glad wrap and use beeswax wraps to cover your leftover food
And my tip for next Xmas – if you’re buying Kris Kringle gifts, instead of buying some cheap crappy plastic thing which will get thrown away in January, buy something that’s actually useful – like a reusable water bottle or coffee cup.
Nhi, Data Scientist
Here’s what Nhi had to say.
- I always recycle my plastic bottles at Donation Stations from the NSW Return and Earn program. They also let you donate your returns to charity which is a nice bonus.
- Save on electricity by switching off all lights, air-conditioning, televisions and other electrical devices when you’re not using them, or not at home.
- Choose to buy more durable clothing and footwear, and those produced through ethical labour, so that they don’t need to be thrown out and replaced as often.
- Dry your clothes via a washing line or portable drying rack to save on electricity costs associated with a powered clothes dryer.
Kevin, Software Engineer
Here’s what Kevin had to say.
- When purchasing new appliances for the home, consider buying based on energy efficiency rather than aesthetics and branding.
- Swap out the cling wrap for foil or glass containers for food storage.
- Make use of reusable shopping bags for your shopping. Leaving a handful of them in the back of the car as a backup.
- Try and walk to nearby shops and cafes where possible instead of driving. It might take a little longer, but the exercise is great and you’ll be doing your part to cut down carbon emissions.
- Switch off appliances at the wall outlets when not being used.
- Try to limit the use of air conditioning and heating – Save them for the hottest or coldest days of the year.
- Buy eco-friendly cleaning products over those full of nasty chemicals.
- If you own your home, it may be worth installing solar panels on your roof. You may also be eligible for a government rebate for doing this.
Jye, Head of Growth
Go team! Here are a few additional tips from me.
- When researching companies to invest in, consider checking their ESG (environmental, social & governance) data to find out how well they perform from a sustainability standpoint. In the same way that you’ve cut out single use plastics from your life, you can choose to invest in companies that have done the same with their products, manufacturing and day-to-day running of their business.
- Next time your out at the beach, hiking or in the general outdoors, make an effort to pick up and dispose of at least one piece of rubbish. If everyone was to do this, we’d be able to enjoy a much cleaner planet.
- Print less. It’s the way of big corporates to lay everything out on the table in a printed format, but try to limit what you and your business need to print.
- While waiting for shower, bath or sink water to heat up, use a bucket to capture the excess. You can re-use this water to feed the plants or mop the floors.
Have you kicked off your sustainable living goals for 2019?