5 easy ways to be eco-friendly

Environment Friendly Living

There’s more to being eco-friendly than sorting your paper from your plastic.

Living sustainably has been at the forefront of the Australian national psyche for a while now, however Planet Ark estimates only 51% of household waste is recycled. Furthermore, the 2016

Australian National Waste Report

found that we collectively produced up to 64 million tonnes of waste during the year 2014 to 2015. While the report did note an upwards trend in recycling, there is always room to

improve your eco-friendly habits

. We asked Tracey Bailey, the founder of

Biome Eco Stores

, and Sarah Thompson from

Planet Ark

for their advice on making 2018 our most eco-friendly year yet.

1. Compost food scraps

“Instead of discarding food scraps in the general waste bin, opt for a compost bin. The design of compost bins has evolved; from small bins for units to large bins for houses, the new designs prevent smells leaching out and flies getting in,” says Tracey. “There are numerous benefits to composting; one particular added value is the natural nutrient-rich fertiliser it provides, perfect for gardens and vegetable patches.”

Take your composting one step further by sharing with your local community via an app. “Food waste is becoming a big issue, especially for those without gardens,” says Sarah. “The Share Waste website and app allows you to easily find people who will accept food waste and kitchen scraps for composting or chickens in your area.” Visit out sharewaste.com for more info.

2. Change your light bulbs

“Replace old incandescent or compact fluorescent bulbs with LED bulbs. These bulbs have a longer lifespan, consume less energy per lumen produced, and don’t emit UV radiation, making them more eco-friendly,” Says Tracey. “This simple swap will reduce your carbon footprint and save you money.”


Reduce your footprint even further

by encouraging your child’s school or local small businesses to go green. “If you have school children, Planet Ark Power is a renewable energy engineering company that helps schools and other SME businesses to save on electricity costs, whilst powering a cleaner energy future,” says Sarah. “Check out the amazing work they’ve done with Siena Catholic College in Queensland at planetarkpower.com.”

Photo by *Martina Gemmola*

Photo by *Martina Gemmola*

Photo by

Martina Gemmola

3. Use toxin free cleaning products

“Cleaning is a daily household task that can significantly increase your exposure to chemicals,” says Tracey.

“Most commercial cleaning products contain a concoction of harmful synthetic chemicals that are known or suspected carcinogens, skin irritants and hormone disruptors. Using synthetic chemical cleaning products spreads toxins around the home, in the air and contaminates the environment when washed down the drain. To reduce your daily exposure to harmful toxins, swap your synthetic chemical cleaning products for toxin and palm oil free alternatives, or make your own.”

Photo by *Martina Gemmola*

Photo by *Martina Gemmola*

Photo by

Martina Gemmola

4. Shop palm oil free

According to Tracey, around 300 football fields of rainforest are felled per day for palm oil plantations in Malaysia and Indonesia, killing around 6000 orang-utans, Sumatran tigers and many other species every year.

“Palm oil is used extensively in most manufactured foods, cleaning products, body care, make up and bio fuels. Australians unknowingly consume on average 10 kilograms of palm oil each year and unclear food labelling makes it hard for shoppers to exercise their consumer choice. Palm Oil Investigations Australia (POI) has developed the POI Palm Oil Barcode Scanner app that allows you to scan the barcode of more than 150,000 products to see if they contain palm oil. This is an easy way to identify and avoid purchasing products that contain palm oil. Biome is POI certified and 100% free from untraceable palm oil.”

Photo by *Martina Gemmola*

Photo by *Martina Gemmola*

Photo by

Martina Gemmola

5. reduce single-use plastics and paper

“From production to disposal, single use plastics consume non-renewable resources and take thousands of years to break down,” says Tracey. “Australians use an estimated 5 billion plastic bags, 3 billion disposable coffee cups and lids, and purchase more than 118,000 tonnes of disposable plastic drink bottles every year. Reduce your impact on landfill by using reusable products such as a KeepCup, stainless steel straws, water bottle, shopping and produce bags.”

TIP

Sarah recommends replacing some of your

basic at-home needs with eco-friendly options

. “Paper and toilet paper are two everyday items that can be made from recycled paper, and by buying products by Naturale or Planet Ark Paper, you can close the loop in the recycling cycle, diverting waste from landfill. For more info on the closing the gap visit

Planet Ark

.

This is is a syndicated post. Read the original at www.homestolove.com.au

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