Treading more lightly in 2023
Habits are greater than goals. So this New Year we’re aiming to bed down lots of little, healthy, earth-friendly habits rather than spouting lofty New Year resolutions. 2023 is an opportunity to do things a little differently – a little better.
These past few years of pandemic, and variants, has taught us that we’re actually pretty good at changing habits when we need to. So now we’re turning a renewed focus to refusing single-use plastic packaging, reusing goods, and recycling or rotting down the excess.
Buy once, buy right
You don’t have to buy the best stuff at the highest price; but beware of low price items of marginal quality. The misery of poor quality soon spoils the pleasure of a low price. So surely it’s better to own fewer, higher quality goods.
- Shed some baggage by having a clear out and donating your used goods and clothes to your local hospice or charity shop.
- Buy a reusable drink bottle that you love and quit buying bottled water or drinks on the run.
- Use reusable cloths or rags for home cleaning and do away with the disposable wipes.
Conserve energy and water at home
Bed down good habits within the home – and then expand your influence to your workplace or school, and on the road as you travel.
- Kiwi summers are great for drying clothes on the washing line so unplug the dryer.
- Don’t let used bath water escape down the rain – use left-over water on plants and gardens.
- Turn the air-con off and let the breeze in.
- Store left-overs correctly – invest in silicone wraps or use compostable cling wrap to avoid food wastage.
- Don’t let left-overs go to waste – challenge yourself to come up with another meal idea (like omelette featuring last night’s roast veggies or burritos stuffed with the roast chicken).
- Switch to a low-flow rate shower head.
- Turn down your hot water system to 60 degrees if it’s too hot.
- Revisit your insulation – improvements here will save you on heating come winter.
Progress, not perfection
Vincent van Gogh once said “great things are done by a series of small things bought together”, and this concept applies absolutely to sustainable living. Imagine what we could achieve if everyone just made a few minor lifestyle adjustments in favour of the planet!
- Make it easy to remember your resuable bags – keep them in your car boot or by the door.
- Trial plant-based meals by using the meat-free Monday concept.
- Try taking public transport or your bike to work. Could you make that work just one day every week?
- Start collecting your green waste for home composting (we have caddy liners to get your started).
Eat locally and seasonally
As consumers we have massive power in influencing what retailers stock. And unfortunately consumer demand in the past has led to high rates of imported foodstuffs and fresh food grown out of season with heavy interventions to make it possible. Growing some of your own food, being aware of food miles, and sourcing food locally, in season, will make a huge difference to your carbon footprint.
- Plant a veggie garden. If you don’t have much room, start with a herb garden – it’ll help you want to eat more fresh food too.
- Preserve or share what you’ve grown.
- Plan your dinners for the week and buy only what you need – you’ll save money and cut down on food waste.
Best of luck with your eco habits in 2023. Here’s to a greener tomorrow!