Our planet is in a dire situation after years of neglect from humans. At Future Platforms, we believe it’s important for us all to do our bit in making eco-friendly choices that can help reduce the plastic in our oceans, landfill buildup, and greenhouse gas emissions.
Making sustainable decisions isn’t always easy or clear. That’s why we put together this list of 10 things you can start doing today to make these decisions a little easier (but don’t stop here!). From our favourite sustainable brands, to things you can do at home, and to tips about how to make your workplace/ home office greener, here is where to get started:
Eco-friendly brands to look out for
Cleaning products full of chemicals might be polluting your home, as well as the environment. We’re no scientists but we believe that homemade or eco-friendly cleaning products will make your home just as clean, without sacrificing air quality or the environment.
Here are some brands (though there are many more on the market) that we like:
All bioD products are made in the UK, 100% vegan and cruelty-free, naturally derived or plant-based with ethically-sourced ingredients. The packaging is made from recycled plastic too!
This is a great brand for Earth-friendly, plastic-free products such as shampoo and conditioner and most other toiletries. With so many options available, they make sustainable living a walk in the park!
Oddbox delivers mostly plastic-free fruit and vegetables that would otherwise go to waste. The product is straight from the farm to your belly, helping to cut out big supermarket chains and reducing the amount of food waste. Bonus tip: if you have an outdoor garden area, you can compost your veg and fruit waste with a compost bin, which will compress down to reusable compost for plants, veg, fruit etc. Many councils also do food waste with your recycling, so make sure you check!
Making your workplace and home office greener
Block fossil fuels
This plugin helps to block out websites and social media pages of coal, oil, and gas companies, as well as the financial institutions that support them.
These days, it’s especially important to have video on during work meetings to replicate how meetings used to be pre-pandemic. But did you know that turning your video off in meetings could cut your environmental impact by up to 96%. For example, a 1 hour call with 2 people uses (credit: a Gerry McGovern talk at GreenTech South):
- 36MB if its audio only,
- 270MB for standard video,
- 540MB for high def video, and
- 1.35GB for ultra high def video.
You don’t have to leave video out completely, just try to reduce it where you can.
Check how eco-friendly your website is
The internet consumes a lot of electricity (416.2TWh per year to be precise) and in turn, produces a lot of carbon emissions. You can check if you need to clean up your website by making it more sustainable here.
Know what impact your investments have
Have you invested or considered investing in BitCoin? How about NFTs? We have some bad news – both are catastrophically bad for the environment. While crypto fads seem fun, they’re not harmless. In order to exist, they rely on crypto mining technology that takes a tremendous amount of power to operate. A study for Cambridge University found that mining BitCoin consumes more energy per year than the entire nation of Argentina. Scholars have even gone so far as to say that bitcoin emissions alone could raise the Earth’s temperature by two degrees. Yikes!
300,000 tonnes of the clothes we buy in the UK each year end up in landfill. Sustainable and slow fashion is on the up and up. There are a ton of sustainable fashion brands out there – here is a good list by WIRED. However, if these are not attainable for you, you might want to consider repairing the life of your clothes or clothes renting which is a budget-friendly alternative to be sustainable and stylish. The Restory and Garmentry are two good rental websites we’ve tried that will help you reduce your environmental footprint and clothes waste. And don’t forget to donate the clothes you don’t want!
If you want to go even further, you could find your local eco/waste-free shop and refill your household items and food here using refillable/plastic-free products. If this isn’t an option for you, high street shops, such as Lush, have plastic-free toiletry options such as shampoo and conditioner bars. Or why not try online zero-waste refill shops, such as EcoRefill?
Calculate your carbon footprint
Finally, head to Giki Zero to calculate your personal carbon footprint. When it comes to saving the planet, everyone needs to get involved and this website really helps to see where you can make improvements.
Happy Earth Day everyone. Now go and save the planet!