cup of tea?
Only boil as much water as you need (as long as you cover the element
in an electric kettle).
Hang your washing on a line outside to dry. Let the sun and wind do
the job instead of your tumbledryer.
on a bike!
Get a bike and practice at weekends or in the park before using it
for work. Don’t forget a helmet and lock!
NO to plastic bags!
In Britain, we use eight billion plastic bags each year: more than
300 for every household. To help reduce this, when you’re out
shopping, take your own cloth or string bag with you, or use ‘bags
for life’. Make sure you reuse any plastic bags that you do
accumulate, or recycle them at the supermarket.
• Keep good stuff out
of landfills – Freecycle it!
If you want to give something away or find something for free, look
at the Freecycle website to find out what’s available near you.
Freecycle is a web-based recycling service. Everything posted must
be free and items range from plant pots to pianos. (A friend has acquired
an excellent camera and some CD shelves from Freecycle – for
Now that the nights are drawing in, close the curtains at dusk to
stop heat escaping through windows.
• Cotton-on to Organic!
Did you know cotton cultivation accounts for around 10% of all pesticides
and 20% of all insecticides used in agriculture? Look out for clothing
made from organic cotton that is grown without pesticides.
• Mains vs. Batteries
Use mains electricity rather than batteries whenever possible. If
you do need batteries, choose re-chargeable ones.
• Fill it up
When using the washing-machine or dishwasher, make sure you always
have a full load, and wash at the lowest temperature possible.
• Green Food Choices
Reduce food miles by buying locally grown, seasonal produce where
possible. When you need to buy food flown in from overseas, look first
for Fair Trade products (eg tea, coffee, bananas, pineapples, sugar,
cocoa, orange juice etc…..and you don’t have to look further
than St James’ Church, as we can order most of these for you!)
• Fix that Leak!
Fix leaking taps – one tap dripping at one drop per second will
waste 1200 litres of water per year!
• Take a shower instead
of a bath
It will save water and up to £10 per year on your fuel bill.
(Although a power shower won’t save anything.)
• Drive Sensibly
When driving your car, reduce pollution by reducing your speed –
driving at 70mph uses 30% more fuel than driving at 40-55mph. Incorrect
tyre pressure can increase fuel consumption too. Accelerating and
braking gradually, rather than sharply, can reduce fuel use by 25%.
• Lights Out
Turn the lights out every time you leave a room. A fluorescent lightbulb
left on for 15 minutes uses 500 times more energy than if temporarily
bulbs last 10 times longer than conventional ones and use 75%
less electricity. They are more expensive initially, so concentrate
on those rooms that are most in use, like kitchen or living-room –
that will give you the greatest savings.
A toaster rather than a grill uses less energy.
Have more house-plants – they can remove up to 87% of indoor
pollution. (Spider plants are particularly effective.)
• Don’t let rainwater
go down the drain – install a
waterbutt. You can use the collected water for the garden and indoor
plants and for washing the car.
your mobile phone
If you have a new mobile phone, please
don’t throw your old one away! It can be recycled to benefit
a charity. On the Eco-group noticeboard (located in the passageway
to the church hall, to the left of the doors), you will find a selection
of freepost envelopes for recycling phones, representing various charities
such as Water Aid, National Trust, Amnesty International & WSPA
- if you can use one, please help yourself!
• Make your own lunch
instead of buying from a sandwich shop. It saves on packaging and
could also save you several hundred pounds per year!
you’re cleaning your teeth, don’t
leave the tap running! Using a glass of water for rinsing, or short
bursts from the tap, can save 3-4 litres of water.
• Carbon Offsetting
With the holiday season fast approaching, you may be thinking of flying
to your destination. If so, you can reduce and offset your carbon
emissions through Climate Stewards (www.climatestewards.co.uk), run
by the international Christian nature conservation organisation A
Rocha. Climate Stewards is developing projects that will help the
climate, people and wildlife. Currently in Ghana, they are planting
a range of indigenous species of trees to absorb CO2 back out of the
atmosphere. Other projects involving renewable energy are planned.
(The projects are verified to the Climate Community & Biodiversity
Some environmentalists are critical of offsetting
but Climate Stewards supports such projects because it feels that
offsetting can demonstrate real concern about climate change and reduce
its impact on millions of vulnerable people. It’s also a practical
way of getting people started on planning to reduce their CO2 emissions.
(By the way, in approximately 10 days, the average
UK citizen will have emitted as much CO2 as the average citizen of
Ghana would emit in a whole year - World Development Movement figures.)