Three ways to reduce your carbon footprint on a budget

We all want to do our part to slow the damage being done to our planet by excessive production and consumption. But we don’t always know where to start, or how to do so without spending an arm and a leg on fancy composting machines or electric vehicles.

Luckily, there are things you can do to help reduce your carbon footprint and, as an added bonus, save money. Here are three green approaches which won’t strain your wallet.

1. Buy a reusable water bottle

It’s no secret that single-use plastic is bad for the environment. It takes at least 450 years for a plastic bottle to degrade, and more than 1 million are sold around the world every minute.

The solution? Pick up a reusable water bottle made from glass or steel that you can refill and take with you anywhere. This one-time purchase will help save you money in the long run on single-use products, and help you to look good while doing it.

It’s also a good idea to keep one in your car so that you can stay hydrated between lessons!

2. Reduce your landfill contributions

One of the biggest ways you can cut back on your landfill contributions is to sell or donate items you no longer have use for. Breathe new life into your old clothes, toys, furniture, and more when you find someone to love them again. One man’s trash is another’s treasure, after all.

Fast fashion is a major culprit in creating emissions in both production and disposal – we discard 92 million tons of clothes-related waste each year. When looking to update your wardrobe, why not try thrifting some new-to-you pieces instead?

If you’re looking to give your home a facelift, but want to avoid hefty price tags and help the planet, try second-hand stores and charity shops, boot sales, and antique markets. Online marketplaces are also perfect for buying and selling used and new items locally with ease.

3. Change how you get around

If you often find yourself driving short distances that you could reasonably walk or bike (on average one mile can be walked in 20 minutes or less), try taking a step out of your comfort zone (literally) and walk to the shops or pub instead.

An in-depth report published by the Bike Storage Company highlighted the importance of reviewing our travel habits, particularly for shorter journeys. In 2019, journeys below five miles represented 58% of all private car trips in the UK. Not only will leaving the car at home save you money and reduce your carbon footprint, it’ll help you reach your daily exercise goals.

Another small change you can make is to use public transport at least once a week to get to and from work. A train ride to decompress at the end of a long day instead of sitting in traffic may be just the thing you didn’t know you needed.

As driver trainers, spending all day in a car can make you feel the need to stretch your legs. So, on days off why not go for an extended walk to stretch your legs and keep fit?

When it comes down to it, we can all make little changes that have a big impact on the world around us. Consider adopting these new approaches to sustainability, and benefit from not just a cleaner way of living, but also a more affordable one.

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