7 Easy Ways to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
We all know we need to live greener, but sometimes that’s easier said than done. Stopping the ice caps from melting can seem like a big ask for a single person. But there are ways to make a real difference in your daily life without grinding everything else to a halt.
Keep reading to learn our top seven ways to reduce your carbon footprint!
What Is a Carbon Footprint?
“Carbon footprint” refers to the total amount of greenhouse gas an individual’s lifestyle emits in a year. From the food we eat to the cars we drive (or don’t drive), everything we do contributes to this number.
And that’s okay – everyone on Earth has a carbon footprint. It’s important to regulate it, however, if you want to avoid negatively impacting the environment.
Curious about your carbon footprint? Take five minutes and figure it out using this carbon footprint calculator.
How to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
Here are seven ways to cut your emissions with low-to-no effort.
1. Move to paperless billing
Official waste regulations require all businesses in Scotland to recycle, and most homes receive waste collection from their local council. But there are ways to reduce that waste even further.
Moving to paperless billing, for example, saves paper from needing to be recycled in the first place. It’s a quick and easy way to reduce your paper consumption, and many companies even offer starter discounts for switching to digital.
2. Ditch “standby mode”
Take a few seconds to power your appliances off when you’re done using them. The savings in money and energy are both worth it.
Although it may seem more convenient using standby mode rather than completely switching off the power, the average household wastes over £40 by leaving appliances on standby. That may not sound like much at first, but just think of what you could by with an extra 40 quid!
3. Use LED light bulbs
Speaking of home energy use, take the savings even further and switch all your lights to LED. They use around 15 times less electricity than traditional light bulbs and around three times less than CFL (the ones with a spiral instead of a bulb).
It often turns out that the ecofriendly option is also the more affordable one. In this case, it’s a win-win.
4. Eat less meat
Meat production contributes anywhere from 20-50% of the Earth’s total carbon emissions. According to the NHS, however, only 2% of people in the UK are vegetarian.
So if the vegetarian life isn’t for you, try adopting “meat-free Mondays,” or don’t eat any meat while you’re at work. Cutting your meat consumption by even a small amount will make a big difference.
5. Don’t waste food
Remember when your mum used to tell you not to waste food? Turns out she was right.
No matter what kind of diet you follow, food that goes in the bin ends up in landfills, which send methane into the atmosphere. If you don’t have food waste recycling where you live, save your extras as leftovers for the next day whenever possible. The environment and your taste buds will thank you.
6. Group business flights together
Air travel is another major source of carbon emissions, but many people still need to travel long distances for business trips.
Rather than booking work flights as the need arises, try to plan your trips in advance when possible. If you need to travel to London, for example, try to book all your client meetings for the month on the same trip. You’ll reduce your number of flights, carbon emissions, and your overall stress by a considerable amount.
7. Use laptops over desktops
Because they rely on battery power, laptops are designed to consume less energy than desktop computers. In fact, the average laptop is 80% more energy efficient!
While laptops are popular at home and on the go, many of us use desktop computers at work – even if we don’t really need to. So the next time you plan on spending the morning responding to emails or sifting through files, ditch the desktop for the office laptop.
Want to learn more about Changeworks Recycling and how we help businesses? Browse our site for more information about recycling and how to be greener at home and at work.