It is #EarthOvershootDay – the day where we have used up all of the natural resources that our planet can renew in 2019. It is a startling way of highlighting the issues that our planet is facing and the work we need to do to #MoveTheDate.
Most of the changes that we can make are things that most people are aware of but do not do often enough.
It was highlighted in the BBC’s recent War on Plastic with Hugh and Anita that some of the plastic that we assume is being recycled is actually being shipped to countries like Malaysia for processing. This results in huge dumps of plastic, affecting the health of the local people. Though it is of course important to recycle, a better option is to cut down on single-use plastic where you can. Take your own bag to the supermarket, get a reusable water bottle and, where possible, buy items with less packaging.
Around a third of all food produced globally goes to waste. Where possible try to buy the amount you need. If you buy pre-packaged fruits and vegetables, knowing you don’t need all of it for a particular dish, try using up the leftovers in other dishes that you could use for lunches or put in the freezer for a later date. Check out Love Food Hate Waste for some tasty recipes.
Some people can only get to work realistically by car but could you switch it up? Try cycling, walking, taking public transport or carpooling to work to cut down on your emissions; it doesn’t have to be every day but it all helps to reduce your environmental impact.
There are websites and local events all over the UK where you can buy second-hand goods. From clothes to furniture, buying second-hand not only reduces the environmental impact, preventing unwanted items from ending up in landfill, but it is often much cheaper too.
Discover some of the National Extension College courses that may help you towards a career in environmental sciences or conservation: