To help support the environment and better protect our ecosystem, Neil gave us his top tips:
1 - Give your own ecosystem a helping hand
Whether you’ve got a garden, a balcony or even a sunny windowsill, everyone could help their local wildlife by planting a few pollinator-friendly plants. Find out more about pollinator-friendly plants, here.
2 - Check the sustainability of your financial investments
We all have a pension, and now is a perfect time to check out the sustainable investment options available to you through your provider.
3 - Go peat-free
One of the big challenges facing the horticultural industry is how to reduce the amount of peat in products on sale and we can all help right now by buying peat-free compost. Peatlands are one of the earth’s best carbon stores, they support an incredibly diverse ecosystem and act as natural flood protection, but sadly they’re decreasing at an alarming rate due to the demand for peat for compost and fuel. Find out how you can go peat free, here.
4 - Switch your go-to mode of transport
Wherever possible, try and investigate the public transport options available to reduce the environmental impact of your daily journeys. If you regularly use a car, you could also consider jumping on your bike or walking for one journey each day – it’ll make you fitter and may even save you money! Electric vehicles are also becoming more affordable and the ever-increasing network of charging points across the UK is making them an extremely viable option.
5. Volunteer for an environment-boosting activity
There are hundreds of amazing voluntary schemes around the country which are helping protect our environment. Why not consider volunteering in your local area to plant trees, assist with wildlife surveys or pick up litter? Check out www.naturevolunteers.uk for some ideas near you!
6 - Shop Local
By purchasing locally-sourced and sustainably-produced goods we can all help support local businesses whilst minimising the ecosystem impact of our daily consumption. It doesn’t always have to cost the earth: perhaps start small and do some research on food and drink that’s grown or produced in your local area and swap this with an imported item you’d normally add to your weekly shopping basket. Along the way, you’ll also get to find out a bit more about where you live and will probably discover some amazing producers near you!
7 - Buy pre-loved or vintage items
A great way to save money and reduce the environmental impact of the things you buy is to search for pre-loved and vintage items and clothing in your local area. There are thousands of listings on Facebook Marketplace, Gumtree and Vinted, among others. When it comes time to part with your clothes, furniture and other items, why not list them on one of these platforms rather than throwing them away? You’ll be saving the environment and earning yourself some money!
8 - Holiday in the UK
By booking a holiday in the UK and using public transport to get there, you’ll be amazed at how much your personal environmental footprint reduces compared to flying abroad. You’ll be supporting our tourism industry which was heavily hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, and you’ll probably discover some incredible places you’ve never been to before. Find out more about your environmental footprint with the WWF’s free calculator, here.
9 - Buy Better Cotton Initiative (BCI)-certified clothing
The next time you’re shopping for new clothes, take a look at the label. Wherever you can, consider swapping to clothing made from BCI-certified cotton to help reduce the environmental impact of the materials which are used to make the clothing you buy.
10 - Switch to a greener energy supplier
There are now plenty of options available for environmentally-friendly domestic energy and many mainstream suppliers also offer specific green tariff options. Switching could make a big difference to your daily environmental footprint!
An annual United Nations (UN) initiative established in 1974, WED encourages worldwide awareness and action in support of our environment. Each year, the UN selects a theme for WED which focuses on a topic in vital need of global support. Over the past five decades, WED has helped raise awareness on diverse subjects such as air pollution, the dangers of single-use plastics, international wildlife crime and climate change.
To find out more about World Environment Day, click here.