At Trespass, we love the outdoors. We’ve been encouraging others to love it too, since 1984 with our passion to explore. No matter how much lovin’ we do, however, it’s not enough to save the earth.
The sad truth is, we are killing it – and not in the good sense of the phrase. No matter how hard we try, or how many of us become vegan (yes, we have watched Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret), there is little-to-no chance of saving the planet in our lifetime. However, there are many ways we can endeavour to delay the earth’s deterioration…
To paraphrase our favourite supermarket, every little really does help. Aside from the obvious recycling, we’ve put together 15 simple things you can do to be more environmentally friendly and reduce that carbon footprint.
- How to live sustainably
- Eco friendly transport use
- Eat environmentally friendly
- How to shop eco friendly
- Eco friendly laundry and washing
- Eco friendly ways to exercise
- Upcycle! Not only is this great for the environment as you’re reducing the amount of waste you produce, it’s also fun, creative and a great activity for kids. You can turn old wine bottles into vases, coffee containers into storage pots, jam jars into decorative fairy light or candle holders… The list is endless!
- Sustainable fashion! There are several sustainable fashion brands that take in old clothes and make new ones out of them (Zara, H&M), along with promises of the use of 100% sustainable fabrics in the near future. Even donating to charity is miles more environmentally friendly than sending old belongings to landfill sites along with your rubbish.
Commuting and Transport Use
- Avoid driving! It’s best not to use your car as they emit gases which contribute to air pollution and global warming. If you can, walk or cycle in. Or, if you live near others headed in the same direction, why not…
- Car share! Take it in turns to make the rounds and collect your neighbouring colleagues. It’s kinder to the environment to have 1 car containing 4 people than 4 single-person cars. Think about it.
- Public transport! Endeavour to get the bus, train or subway if your destination is a little further out of reach for walking or cycling. This will lessen your carbon footprint, save you on insurance and fuel costs and, if you decide to get off a stop early and walk, gets your step count up for the day, too!
Drinking and Eating
- Reusable coffee cups! If you’re a take-out kind of brew-drinker, it’s worth investing in a travel mug or flask. They’ll insulate your beverage of choice for longer, save the environment, and save you a few pennies too, as many coffee shops now offer discounts to those with a reusable travel mug or ‘keep cup’.
- Replace dairy with soy! Soy has a longer shelf life, is healthier for the body and can be easily bought at the same, if not a cheaper, price than the regular stuff. Not forgetting better for the environment, as it requires less water (and produces less methane) than our four-legged friend alternative. Check out the BBC’s climate change food calculator for more ideas on edible environmentally friendly swaps you can make.
- Re-use plastic bags! Remember all those carrier bags you forked out at least 5p for? Don’t throw them out – you can re-use them! We suggest keeping a couple spare in the boot of your car, in your work bag or anywhere easily accessible to you so you never forget them, even on a spontaneous shopping trip.
- Shop local! Walk or bike to your local supermarket or use a more eco friendly mode of transport. Or if your supermarket is a larger commitment to get to, consider shopping online, and do so with a larger list and bulk-buying. Choose the retailer closest to you though, as the lesser the distance your shopping travels, the lower the carbon footprint.
Washing and Laundry
- Wear natural fibres! Frequently washed items should be non-synthetic where possible. The more natural fibres you wear – such as cotton – the better for the environment, as washing synthetic fabrics – such as polyester, nylon, rayon, acrylic, microfibre – contributes to oceanic pollution.
- Use plant-based detergents! Another way to avoid synthetic chemicals is by using plant-based detergents. These are often kinder to sensitive skin, too.
- Wash at 30! Using a cooler wash to clean your clothes not only is better for the environment, but it will also cost you less per cycle. You’re not just saving the planet here. Did you know that all Trespass garments can be machine washed at 30 degrees? You could also try one better and hand wash instead – but make sure to check the label before doing so!
- Only run full loads! This saves wasting energy and also reduces the amount you use the washing machine, which in turn is a much more ethical approach. Washing clothes frequently is detrimental to the garment itself as well as the environment, as it leads to the quality of the fabric diminishing quicker as well as the garment’s disposal.
- Avoid tumble drying! Make the most of sunny weather and spend some quality time outside with your clothing by hanging it out on the washing line. If the climate’s not quite on your side, however, popping up a clothes horse indoors is a great plan B. We recommend saving up bulky items – such as jackets, blankets and dressing gowns – for washing on warm days in order to be hung out.
- Go outside! The running of machines in gymnasiums is, unsurprisingly, damaging to the environment. Parks, public paths, beaches and hill walks are much better for the health of the planet, but also your body. Find out why in our treadmill vs road running article. If however, the weather is temperamental, or you live in an area where outdoor activities are difficult to pursue, move your workout to your house. There are loads of great exercise videos online that are easy to follow and require next to no equipment for participation.
- Beat plastic! It’s always important to remember to stay hydrated. But plastic bottles, as we all know, are harmful to the environment. Go metal with an insulated stainless steel water bottle.
Written by: Natalie Green