Article 08/11/2019

What can we do now?

By Katie Dillon
Did you participate in the Global Climate Strike?  
Are you now wondering what you can do to ensure you continue to make an impact to reduce your carbon footprint?

There are so many ways you can make changes in your home, office, and day-to-day life that will help lower your carbon emission footprint.

At home, the first place to look is your wardrobe. Did you know textiles account for 10% of global carbon emissions? Unbelievably, this is the world’s second biggest polluter after oil!

Fast fashion creates dozens of micro-seasons throughout the year, which leads to huge numbers of the population wearing clothes only a few times before throwing them away. On average, Australian’s discard around 6,000kg of fashion and textile waste every 10 minutes, which inevitably ends up in landfill and then takes decades to decompose.

What can you do to combat this? Try to find out more about where your clothes come from by making sure they’re ethically and sustainably sourced. You can get your friends together and organise a clothes swap party – this way you get a new wardrobe with zero cost to your wallet and the planet, win-win! Or, you can have a rummage through your local op-shops, you never know what hidden gems you might find!

Speaking of your clothes, putting them out to air dry will have such a positive impact on reducing carbon emissions in the long run. Not only will the planet love you for it, your clothes will last longer as well!

At work, create an office challenge for everyone to go paperless, or even better make it a competition with weekly prizes for whoever prints the least amount of paper! There are so many different apps available that let you sign documents online and then email it back to the sender straight away – no more needlessly printing documents.

At the end of the work day you can encourage everyone in the office to switch off all monitors and lights in the building before leaving to go home. Powering off overnight will not only save on emissions but also on the company bills.

We can all make small changes in our day-to-day lives that, over time, will have a positive impact.

Challenge yourself to drive less, especially now that Summer is on it’s way and you can walk and cycle more, or jump on public transport to get from A to B. You could take advantage of ride-sharing – it might take a little bit longer, but at least you’re sharing the cost of emissions and you never know, you might even make new friends!

Feeling brave? Have a go at eating a plant based diet, even if you only eat a few meat-free meals a week, it will still reduce your footprint. By eating local and in season produce means that your food hasn’t had to travel long distances to get to you, and only buying what you need will also reduce the amount of food waste.

Planning ahead and freezing as much as possible will also ensure minimal food wastage, plus give you the added perk of not having to make dinner every night – heck yeah!

If the Climate Strike has taught us anything, it’s that one person can make a difference.

So, just ask yourself: what can I do?

By Katie Dillon