Green energy is generated by natural resources such as sunlight, wind and water. Unlike traditional sources of energy, it is renewable and causes less pollution. In the UK we generate green energy through 8,000 wind turbines, but we can all do more in our every day lives to maximise green energy.
Green energy is more than just choosing renewable energy sources, but it is also about cutting down. In our consumer and throw-away culture, buying new clothes each season or a new phone every 2 years has become the norm. But do we stop to consider the environmental damage of our consumption?
We all need to be more mindful of the energy we use. Think back to this morning… After waking up, you probably had a shower, ate breakfast, brushed your teeth, and headed to work. All of these actions and resources use energy. In a planet of 7.8 billion and depleting resources, it has never been more important to be conscious of the amount and type of energy we are consuming.
The UK’s Co2 footprint target is 10.5 tonnes per person, per year. What’s your Co2 footprint? Find out on the WWF calculator
Switching to green energy is a journey which requires many habits to be changed. Over the past 6 months, I have been inspired by the people I’ve met to start my own carbon-reduction journey, and I hope after reading this you will start yours too!
Start small, with daily choices such as shorter showers and minimising waste. Then move to personal challenges such as diet or travel. As a conscious consumer, you could share your passion with others and advocate for change on a larger scale!
We can all do things to be more sustainable in our every day lives. These are my top 5 tips on how you can go green.
1. Change energy provider
There are several energy providers who use 100% renewable electricity and green gas, as well as support green energy innovations. Read more here about some energy providers.
2. Reduce clothing consumption
It is estimated that the average lifespan of a piece of clothing in the UK is 2.2 years. This ‘fast fashion’ demands lots of energy and resources, with clothing production accounting for 10% of global carbon emissions. Instead, try attending a clothes-swap, shopping at a thrift store, learning how to mend clothes.
3. Join a green energy movement
Would you like to join a community combating unsustainable energy usage? There are many initiatives that can help you do this. Check out this list of initiative for inspiration: Fossil Free (Advocating), Go Green for your community (Training and Funding), Climate Action (International Events), Renewable World (Challenges), London Community Energy Fund (Funding Green Ideas), European Energy Centre (Volunteer), Brixton Solar Energy Projects, (Volunteer) and Energy Garden community (Volunteer).
4. Avoid food waste
Did you know, food waste from UK households accounts for 20 million tonnes of CO2 each year, the equivalent of 7 million cars? To avoid this, you could use a Portion Planner, preserve food, utilise unavoidable food waste and download a food waste app such as Olio and To Good To Go.
5. Attempt zero-waste
For the acclaimed eco-warriors, you could attempt moving to zero-waste by not buying packaged food, start making your own products and by shopping second hand. Read this blog article for 13x zero waste resolutions and head down to some zero-waste shops such as Hetu.
Raleigh UK has been embracing Green Energy this month as part of our Sustainability Committee initiative. Tell us how you are tackling climate change at firstname.lastname@example.org.