FOOD

TAKE THE TASTE OR WASTE CHALLENGE!

Swedish bloggers are helping the Sustainable Lifestyles and Education Programme reduce food waste by challenging themselves and their followers to try food and drink that has passed the ‘best before’ date. Try it, and challenge your friends! #TasteOrWaste

10 TIPS TO REDUCE YOUR ‘FOODPRINT’

  1. Shop smart, planning meals and avoiding impulse buys.
  2. Buy ‘funny’ fruit whose size, shape or color aren’t regular and may go to waste.
  3. Understand expiration dates. In the US, “sell-by” and “use-by” dates suggest peak quality,not safety. With the exception of baby foods, most food is ok to eat for much longer.
  4. ‘Zero down’ your fridge, eating food you have before buying or making something new.
  5. Say freeze! Frozen foods remain safe indefinitely
  6. Request smaller portions in restaurants.
  7. Compost food scraps.
  8. Think ‘first in, first out.’ Check your pantry; eat what you bought first.
  9. Love leftovers!
  10. Donate non-perishable food to local food banks, soup kitchens and shelters.

ENERGY

DID YOU KNOW…?

From an environmental perspective, the optimal lifespan of a laptop is at least 7 years – but most are only used for 4.

Since around 70% of the energy a laptop consumes during its lifetime is used to manufacture it, squeezing a few more years out of your computer is a great way to reduce your environmental impact.

LOOK FOR THE ANGEL

Want to buy sustainable, energy efficient products? Keep your eyes out for the Blue Angel! Launched by Germany in 1978, The Blue Angel is the world’s first eco-label.

It uses rigorous, science-based criteria to evaluate products across their entire lifespans, and is committed to protecting humans and the environment, climate, water and resources. It has certified 12,000 products from 1,400 companies—nearly a quarter of which are located outside of Germany, from London to Istanbul to New Delhi.

GREEN HOUSE GAS


TRAVEL SMART

Travel and tourism are responsible for 5% of the world’s CO2 emissions, but you don’t have to cancel your summer vacation to demonstrate your sustainable credentials. Follow’s these tips from the Kasane Call to Action to be a carbon-conscious traveller.

  • Fly wisely. Plan your trip so that you minimize air travel, and stay longer at your destination instead of making many short trips.
  • Travel light. Airplanes need more fuel to fly heavier loads. Reduce the weight of your luggage to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Unplug at home. Turn off lights and unplug household appliances that can be left off while you’reaway.
  • Unplug on the road. Turn off the lights and air conditioner or heater when you leave your room.
  • Choose greener ways to get around. Walking or cycling is a great way to see the sights, and public transportation will give you a better feel for your destination.
  • Try the local fare. Reduce your ‘food miles’ by visiting a farmer’s market and choosing restaurants that buy local products.
  • Power your trip sustainably. Avoid battery-operated gadgets when you can, and buy rechargeable batteries for essential travel items such as cameras, razors and flash lights.
  • Offset your carbon footprint. Impact on the climate is unavoidable, but you can help by contributing to carbon offsetting programmes that support conservation and renewable energy.

CIRCULAR ECONOMY

THINK INSIDE THE CIRCLE

Think the circular economy is just for businesses? Think again! Companies are responsible for designing, sourcing and producing the products we use, but you still play a part. Individual changes can help make the circular economy a reality.

  1. Buy fewer but better quality products. High-quality items last longer, and are more likely to be able to be repaired.
  2. Repair, reuse, and repurpose things before you recycle.
  3. Forget ownership, and rent or borrow items you don’t need every day. From clothing rental to carand bike sharing to your public library, there are lots of ways to get what you need and want.
  4. Support circular businesses. Buy from companies that take back their worn-out products—fromcrayons to cookware, electronics to denim.
  5. Speak up! Email your favorite companies to tell them you care about circularity – companies respondto consumer demands.

“Once we are aware of how deeply our consumer choices affect and shape the economy, it is only a small step to closing the loop and bringing more circularity into our lives, economies and societies.”
– UN Environment