Ways to limit your impact on the environment ....

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UKHippy is a long running online community and of likeminded people exploring all interpretations on what it means to be living an alternative lifestyle -- we welcome discussions on everything related to sustainability, the environment, alternative spirituality, music, festivals, politics and more -- membership of this website is free but supported by the community.

  • Get a water butt to collect rainwater. I live in the south east and in some places there are still hosepipe bans in force from last summer. The rainfall down here has been next to nothing this autumn/winter and the reservoirs are all low. The government is insisting on building new housing developments which will make matters worse as the demand for water is increased.

  • buying loose fruit and veg rather than packaged and not using the plastic bags to individually wrap them saves a lot of wasted resources and cuts down on landfill too.

    And do your damnedest to buy only food which is in season and grown as locally as possible.

    And in no real order:

    Lighting - throughout our not big house we have these lightbulbs from Ecozone. They're wonderful.

    Some encouragement on soya - there is a variety which can be grown in (almost?) the UK's latitudes.

    In our fair(?) city is an excellent co-operative store where you can get your empty Ecover containers refilled for about 2/3 the cost of buying new.

    Woodstoves - Even allowing for emissions of fossil CO2 in planting, harvesting, processing and transporting the firewood, replacing fossil fuel with wood fuel will typically reduce net CO2 emissions by over 90%!! (I can't remember the source of that statistic, but it's pretty impressive, isn't it).

    No heat or light in empty rooms. And shut the doors of empty rooms.

    At the risk of sounding like Norman Tebbit, Get on your bicycle.

    Wash empty food tins in the last of the washing up water.

  • I've read a few times this year that simply 'not flying' is the biggest
    environmental saving you can make. That's not to say that energy saving
    in the home and recycling aren't well worth doing, but that flying off on holiday undoes all our good work in other areas.

    Kind of a shame though as travel really does broaden the mind. Oh well you can still go interrailing at least :)

  • Quote from rasberry

    I've read a few times this year that simply 'not flying' is the biggest environmental saving you can make. That's not to say that energy saving in the home and recycling aren't well worth doing, but that flying off on holiday undoes all our good work in other areas.

    Kind of a shame though as travel really does broaden the mind. Oh well you can still go interrailing at least :)



    And yet, sad smile, some of the dumbest, most narrow-minded f**ckers you'll ever meet jet off all over the place.

    Here's a fabulous web page: http://www.chooseclimate.org/flying/mapcalc.html

    I put in a London to Florida flight because it's the traditional route used to show that every single passenger on every return flight on that route is responsible for producing as much GHG as they would during one year's car driving. Don't forget to read all the bumph with the results.

  • Quote from rasberry

    I've read a few times this year that simply 'not flying' is the biggest
    environmental saving you can make. That's not to say that energy saving
    in the home and recycling aren't well worth doing, but that flying off on holiday undoes all our good work in other areas.

    Kind of a shame though as travel really does broaden the mind. Oh well you can still go interrailing at least :)



    You could always astral fly instead hehehe :D

    But yes you are right it does really cost the environment to fly!!:(

  • Quote from Stormypagan

    You could always astral fly instead hehehe :D



    Well, back in the 70s me and my friends would read those Lobsang Rampa books (supposedly really a plumber from Devon) which contained all the lowdown on how to go astral flying.

    I tried, but I mostly just fell asleep. I guess I got stuck in the astral departure lounge :)

  • Quote from rasberry

    I've read a few times this year that simply 'not flying' is the biggest environmental saving you can make. :)



    But if you already don't fly, then you can continue to do plenty of other things, or not to do plenty of other things, to reduce impact.

    Have you ever thought that if you're halfway trying on the green front, then you're sort-of making it easier for non-green slobs to continue for longer with their selfish lifestyles?

    No? Don't go there!


    Another small way of reducing GHGs is to use your microwave oven, assuming you have one, for as much of your cooking as possible because it is far less demanding of energy than other conventional-in-the-West cooking methods.

  • Quote from Milo



    Another small way of reducing GHGs is to use your microwave oven, assuming you have one, for as much of your cooking as possible because it is far less demanding of energy than other conventional-in-the-West cooking methods.




    Ohhhhh noooo I don't own one and never will ... doogy things in my opinion, who wants radiated food??? Sorry thats one thing I have to draw the line at SORRY!!!

  • Quote from rasberry

    Well, back in the 70s me and my friends would read those Lobsang Rampa books (supposedly really a plumber from Devon) which contained all the lowdown on how to go astral flying.

    I tried, but I mostly just fell asleep. I guess I got stuck in the astral departure lounge :)



    Hehehe!! I would probably get stuck on the runway hehehe :D

  • Quote from Milo



    Another small way of reducing GHGs is to use your microwave oven, assuming you have one, for as much of your cooking as possible because it is far less demanding of energy than other conventional-in-the-West cooking methods.


    I know it is recommended on my website, but recent research has found microwaving food destroys the bioflavanoids in your food. The best way to cook green vegies is to first wash ( to remove any pestisides) then either, steam or stir fry. Root vegies are either best stir fried , steamed or roasted.


    PS a small toaster ovens fitted with a thermostat does exactly the same job as a normal full size oven but uses a fraction of the energy required. I have cooked bread, fish, roasts, cakes and pies in toaster ovens. The only limitation is the physical size of the item being cooked.

  • if you dont have a shower and only have a bath, the water can still be used for lots of other things.

    my dad uses it to wash the car and kitchen floor etc. he has a shower but hates them so figures he's saving just as much water by taking a bath then using the water again.

    if you're re-using the water in the garden though it is probably better if it has only had chemical free products in it (e.g. ecover shampoo/soaps etc)

    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” -Mark Twain

  • Quote from stardust

    if you dont have a shower and only have a bath, the water can still be used for lots of other things.

    my dad uses it to wash the car and kitchen floor etc. he has a shower but hates them so figures he's saving just as much water by taking a bath then using the water again.

    if you're re-using the water in the garden though it is probably better if it has only had chemical free products in it (e.g. ecover shampoo/soaps etc)


    My mate, a plumber, is just about to re-route his bathwater by pumping it up to a tank in his loft via a saniflow unit.

    The idea is that the water will then be used to flush his toilet and other things.

    The only hurdle will be getting rid of all the stuff like hair and stuff that collects in the bath waste.

  • Quote from Paul

    My mate, a plumber, is just about to re-route his bathwater by pumping it up to a tank in his loft via a saniflow unit.

    The idea is that the water will then be used to flush his toilet and other things.

    The only hurdle will be getting rid of all the stuff like hair and stuff that collects in the bath waste.



    Can he use some sort of cleanable steel mesh filter? The sort you get with dirty water pumps?

  • Quote from Paul

    My mate, a plumber, is just about to re-route his bathwater by pumping it up to a tank in his loft via a saniflow unit.

    The idea is that the water will then be used to flush his toilet and other things.

    The only hurdle will be getting rid of all the stuff like hair and stuff that collects in the bath waste.



    A green power source for the pump?