Reduce, reuse, recycle. Can small everyday actions actually make a difference to the environment?
“If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito” – Dalai Lama
By now you’ve probably heard about the estimated 10 million straws used by Australian’s each day and the huge impact this is having on our ecosystem.
Plastic straws can take up to 200 years to decompose, if ever.
So other than using an eco-friendly straw or refusing straws altogether, how can one person make a difference?
1. Keep wipes out of your pipes
Not only are they terrible for the environment, with studies proving they do not break down as advertised, but they are also causing headaches for Australian families. With 75% of sewer blockages involving flushed wet wipes, it’s best to keep the wipes out of your pipes to keep the plumber at bay.
2. Turn Off the tap
On average, each Australian uses 341,000 litres of water each year – that’s around 8 backyard swimming pools.
There are many ways to save on water bills while helping the environment.
Simple ways to conserve water include:
- Turn off your tap when brushing your teeth
- Fix any dripping taps or leaky toilets. A leaking tap can waste as much as 20,000 litres of water a year
- Wash fruits and vegetables in a half-full sink instead of a running tap
- Make sure you have a full load of laundry before starting the machine
3. Go paperless for your bills
On average it takes 10L of water to make one piece of paper.
If you switch a three-page bill to an electronic bill, you will have saved 360L of water in one year. Not to mention the wasted ink and pollution from getting that bill into your letterbox.
Most banks now have an option within your internet banking portal or app to switch to paperless bills. An added bonus is that you receive your bill immediately and there is no chance of it getting wet or infested with ants.