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12 Small Acts To Save Our World
Author: WWF, Ben Fogle (foreword), Emily Beament (text), Adam Doughty (illustrations)
Publisher: London: Century
Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
Synopsis from goodreads:
“It’s easy to feel like we can’t make a difference. But small, easy actions, if taken by enough people, can move mountains – and save planets.
Written in collaboration with leading environmental experts from WWF, this short book provides simple changes we can all make to our everyday lives, from morning to night.
These aren’t the only things you can do. Nor are they things you have to do. But these 12 small acts are basic steps anybody can take, and if even one of them sticks, our children will inherit a better world.
– Turning off devices instead of leaving them on standby
– Buying less cotton clothing (a T-shirt needs 2,400 litres of water to make!)
– Using reusable straws when possible
– Turning off the tap while you brush your teeth
will take only moments, but if enough people commit to them, we can make a real difference to our planet.”
This review has come the weekend after Earth Hour which is held every year to highlight the importance of urging action for our environment by the whole world coming together and switching off their lights for just one hour. I received this book for Christmas from my sister after stumbling across it on the internet and I am so glad I read this book. This was a brilliant and incredibly informative book that is brimming with ideas and tips on how to help save our world. By doing small acts such as turning off the lights when you leave an empty room or walking short trips rather than taking the car, it can really help make a difference and encourages others to do the same.
The layout of each chapter makes for an easy read that is quick, yet full of amazing ideas! Each chapter explores a topic and provides facts and figures (but with no graphs or hard-to-read tables!) to give evidence to the topic in question which makes for an interesting and instructive read. I really enjoyed this book and think it’s an absolute must-read for anyone and everyone!
While I really think you should read this book (because it’s amazing!) I’m going to summarise the twelve acts you can do at home to save our world. We all have to take responsibility and think about our actions and their consequences on the environment. After all, if everyone just sticks their fingers in their ears or can’t comprehend how a single person can really affect the world so much, then that’s thoughtless and reckless. We all need to recognise our role in the world and realise our actions and their implications sooner rather than later – when it’s too late. We can all do something! So let’s get some ideas with how to help save our world:
Don’t simply standby: Unplug your appliances and kill the vampire power
- Turn appliances off standby! A TV left on standby for a year uses as much energy as leaving a light bulb on for a day and a half. Any appliance you aren’t using that has a little glowing light (or ‘vampire eyes’) is wasting energy that you’re paying for! So turn it off when you aren’t using it.
- Turn lights off when you aren’t in the room – even if it’s for a few seconds it still saves energy compared to leaving it on.
Go blue to stay green: Save water each day brushing and washing
- Turn that tap off when you’re brushing your teeth! A running tap can waste 6 litres of water in a minute.
- Cut down the number of baths you have – they’ll be more of a treat when you have one!
- Try turning down the temperature in your shower – colder showers are apparently better for your skin/hair anyway!
- Use the eco setting on dishwashers/washing machines.
Green is the new black: Make your wardrobe last longer
- Only buy clothes you really need or will use time and time again – the textiles industry has a huge carbon footprint, so be wise with what you buy.
- Recycle clothes or fashion something new – learn a new skill and make items last longer! Or give them to a friend or charity shop so someone else can enjoy them.
On your bike: Walk, ride or run
- Use public transport or cycle to work instead of using the car if you can.
- Walk or cycle shorter journeys – instead of a five minute drive, make it a twenty minute walk and get some exercise as well as helping the planet!
- Don’t idle in cars – turn the engine off where possible.
- Drive smart – speeding up and braking harshly wears out your car and wastes fuel.
Paper doesn’t grow on trees: Lower your daily paper usage
- Limit your daily paper use – if you use a lot, try a target of just a single sheet of A4, or use scrap paper.
- Look out for the FSC logo on paper/cardboard products which means the paper has come from a sustainable source. If a paper product hasn’t got this, challenge the company and send them an email asking why!
Gear up for a greener plate: Moderate the meat and enhance those plants
- Eat less meat! You don’t have to turn full on veggie; if you have meat everyday, then just make one day where you go without – Meatless Monday!
- Make sure the meat and fish you’re eating come from local and responsible sources.
- Buy vegetables when they’re in season and then freeze them when they are so you can enjoy out of season!
Reuse, rinse, repeat: Cut down on daily plastic waste
- Buy and use a refillable water bottle and remember to carry it with you – you can fill up at many food places and cafes if you just ask!
- Use a coffee mug and take it with you when you buy coffee – lots of places tend to give small discounts if you do this too so it can save you money.
- Buy loose veg.
- Cook more meals rather than buying ones ready-made – it’s good for your pocket too!
- Use biodegradable poop bags for your pets!
- Check out this awesome plastic free shop online
Mindful shopping: Think big, before you buy big-ticket items
- Buy energy-efficient items.
- Check the energy label for fridges and buy one that is most eco-friendly!
- Consider if you really need a new item before splashing the cash.
Potted potential: Clean the air by plotting plants at home and the office
- Keep plotted plants inside and around the house and your work if you can (just watch out for toxic plants if you have pets! Here’s a list for toxic plants for cats)
- Make as much use of the space you have in your garden/balcony and grow more plants/vegetables.
- Don’t pave all of your driveway – leave a small section for a row of plants or grass if you can!
Eco-footprints in the sand: Lower your holiday footprint
- Go on holiday somewhere you don’t need a flight to get to – flying is one of the most climate-polluting things a person can do!
- Look into taking the train if you can – did you know you can travel by train from London to Italy? Check out the Seat 61 website for how the journey you’re planning could be all by train.
Pledge for the future: Make your pension an investment for the planet
- Find out what companies your pension provider is investing in and whether they support developing clean energy – send them an email and ask!
- Email your current and/or savings accounts and see what sort of companies they associate with and whether you agree with this.
Don’t mess with the world: Stop littering, and lead a community clean-up
- Pick up any litter you see on the street! It can be gross, but it will stop wildlife getting trapped or mistaking it for food. The same goes for canals/rivers.
- Organise a community beach clean-up.
If we all adopt these simple and easy to do strategies then we can all help save our planet. It just takes a little thought and some planning but it’s completely possible to do! Let me know in the comments how you get on with following these planet-saving plans and I implore you all to check out this book in the library. Have a brilliant day everyone!