Green recycling tips
I was having a very productive day shopping in the hot April sun, swinging my many bags of new summery things when the sign in front of me hit me like a tonne of eco-warriors wielding environmentally-friendly bricks. “90% OF THE WASTE IN THE SEA IS MADE UP OF PLASTIC BAGS!” … Oops.
And that was when I thought “Hmmm. It’s a bit hot for April, isn’t it?”
It’s kind of obvious that:
a) our climate is changing, and
b) we need to do something about it
But if you don’t control the energy bills in your house, have no car to change or are too young to vote, what can you do?
1) Give up the plastic bags
OK, there isn’t a ban coming in July – but it’s still rather important!
It’s harder than it seems to give up carrier bags as we’re all so used to them, but here are a couple of making-it-easier hints:
. Carry a spare plastic bag from your favourite shop in your normal bag or pocket. They’re very small when folded and look ok when they’re being used.
. Buy a rucksack or bigger bag – even if you just use it when you go shopping. As more people are giving up carrier bags, there are nicer-looking long-lasting bags on sale.
. Just carry it! If you live two seconds away from the corner shop, does your shopping really need to go in a plastic bag? If it does, refer to the first point listed above!
2) Turn them off!
You don’t need your TV on when you’re asleep, or your phone charger on when your phone is in your pocket- so turn them off as it all saves energy. (I’m sorry – I know from experience this is the hardest one to stick to!)
Most places now have a separate collection date for recyclable things: e.g. cardboard, paper, bottles, some plastic etc. Find out when yours is and get a recycling bin. (Then use it). If you don’t have a collection date or have too much to recycle, find out where your nearest bottle-bank is and use that.
Tip: Most bottle-banks have clothes-banks too where you can put unwanted clothes and shoes that then get sent to developing/war-torn/natural-disaster-torn countries. I know that doesn’t strictly concern climate change but it’s a nice thing to do so I thought I’d mention it!
4) Can you…
Walk? Cycle? Take the bus? If you can, do. Most buses are being fitted with low-carbon fuel gadgets so they aren’t too bad at all! I know that the first two can take a bit longer, but you don’t have to find a parking space or wait for the interior to cool down, and you get fitter too!
5) “Is the people educated?”
I’m assuming that by now most people reading Mookychick think that George Bush is an idiot. But have you heard Al Visceral display’s (the previous opposition) side of the story?
He has made a video all about climate change and it’s actually interesting, with scary facts to boot! It’s called “An Inconvenient Truth” and can be bought at record and DVD stores, or on Amazon.com. This will tell you the reality and give information about how you can help.
Then… show everyone else. The more people seeing this, the better – especially the people who don’t believe that climate change is actually happening despite the recent freaky weather and last few decades worth of research and warnings.
6) Calling all literary types: Write!
. If the company you work for is a money-and-gas-guzzling corporation, write to head office and ask them to consider greener ways to money-guzzle.
. If your local area is a bit crap in the way of recycling, tree-planting and general greenery, write to your MP and ask for some changes. (If you’re over 18 and fancy a challenge, run for MP!)
. Do you have a local paper or town magazine? Write and ask if you can contribute an article on climate change and how to reduce it.
7) Old enough? Vote.
If you’re over eighteen, vote! The green party like their environmentally friendly policies, but so do some other parties too. Have a look around and see which party you want to be in charge, then make that cross in the box!
So there are a few relatively easy things to do. Some are definitely harder to start doing than others, but it all helps.