We can all be a bit more environmentally responsible by changing a few little things that we do in our daily lives. Here are six ways you can do your part to #bethechange for our future:
Create backyard habitats
There are lots of ways you can create backyard habitats for wildlife in your area. You could put in a nesting box for small mammals or birds; or build a pond for frogs to live and breed in; and by planting native shrubs in your garden, you would encourage birds, butterflies, insects and beetles to visit your garden.
If you have pets then it’s important to ensure that they don’t harm wildlife. By keeping them indoors at night and putting bells on cats’ collars, it makes sure that the creatures living in your backyard are safe as much as possible. Check out Backyard Buddies for more tips on supporting native wildlife in your gardens.
Be waste aware
The evidence is huge to support the fact that human beings create a lot of waste. Unfortunately, Australians are one of the most waste producing nations in the world. If everyone recycled their bottles, cans and paper, composted their food scraps and disposed of their toxic and electronic waste correctly, the difference would be huge for the environment.
You could start doing trash free Tuesday or waste free Wednesday at your child’s school. This would mean making lunchboxes with no packaging that has to be thrown away. Another great thing we could all do is take part in Plastic Free July and avoid all single use plastic items for a whole month. Every time just 1 person says no to single use plastic, it makes a difference.
Watch what you eat
Whenever possible, we should all be eating locally grown food. One of the biggest ways we affect the environment is with the food that we eat. You can find out about sustainable ways our food is being grown and permaculture practices that are more harmonious with nature. You can check out 100% Certified Organic locally grown produce & meat boxes here. You could also participate in a community garden or encourage your local schools to develop their own veggie patches.
Take climate action
Climate change is causing global temperatures to rise and we all need to find ways to be more energy efficient and keep temperatures below a 2-degree increase. We can do this by reducing our consumption of water as well as power as it actually takes a lot of energy to generate and produce water fit for humans to use.
By doing an audit of your home or classroom, you can measure your carbon footprint here. Some of the ways we can make a difference are by switching to energy efficient light bulbs, always making sure appliances are switched off at the wall when not being used and making sure we turn off heating and cooling when not in a room. For homeowners, you can find out what sort of options are available for having solar panels installed in your roof. There is also Earth Hour at the end of March every year, where we turn lights off to support action for climate change.
Help clean up Australia
Our environment is full of rubbish, in the bush, around our rivers and absolutely in our oceans. We are all aware of the damage plastic is doing to our wildlife. A really good way to make a difference when we are out and about is by always Taking 3 for the sea whenever we see it laying about.
People living by coastal areas can join local beach clean ups which are great ways to give back and actually very rewarding to be a part of. There are many clean-up programs that use scientific data to map pollution hotspots. One of them is citizen science project run by AUSMAP where schools are getting involved in helping map out the areas. For people not living on the coast there are lots of different programs you can join such as Clean Up Australia Day.
A lot of car journeys are actually 2 kilometres or less which means by making the change to walk instead of drive, we make a huge difference in the amount of greenhouse pollution going into the atmosphere. Just by walking 10km a week instead of driving saves approximately 300kg of greenhouse pollution a year!
Riding a bike is another great way to be active. You can find events you can join at the Physical Activity Foundation.
So just by making small changes to your daily life, you really can make a difference to our environment and know that you are helping our future generations have a better planet to live on. I know I’ll be making some of these changes in my life!