A lot of the things we do in our lives are continuously being reassessed in order to make them as environmentally friendly as possible. We’re always changing how we tackle certain things, from the food we eat, to our daily work practices and the waste we produce at home; then there’s the challenge of how we can change our habits to leave as little long-term impact as possible.
Here at HIPPO we’re all about being environmentally responsible, we’ve taken steps to ensure that over 90% of what we collect is recycled, and that our collection vehicles plan their routes ahead so that we collect as much as possible in one journey. A few of our most recent blogs have focused on the ways to be greener, and this time around we’re looking at what can be done to make travel more eco-friendly.
Green travel is a term used to describe responsible travel practices, and these methods of transport not only help the environment, but can also save money and support local communities as well – helping us to meet the needs of today without compromising future generations. So read on to learn about what can be done to make everyday travel that little bit greener.
GETTING ABOUT DAY TO DAY
Pollution from transportation makes up around 25% of all the greenhouses gas that the UK produces. These gasses are what are contributing to climate change, and are also doing a lot of harm to our health. As more roads and airport runways are being built, the problem is far from being adequately dealt with.
The fact of the matter is, we need to get places! Getting to work, doing our shopping, and having a holiday are all part and parcel of everyday life, so how do you make these necessities a touch kinder to the planet?
HOP ON YOUR BIKE
Cycling to work (or for recreation) is one of the sure fire ways to help reduce emissions, and is also good for your health. An added bonus is that if you live in a busy town or city, it’s often a much faster way to get around as you’ll be zipping past everybody else stuck in traffic. The popularity of cycling is ever increasing, and the UK is finally catching up with the rest of Europe and implementing more and more bike-friendly paths and cycle lanes through city centres.
USE PUBLIC TRANSPORT OR CAR POOL
As temperamental as it sometimes seems to be, using public transport is a fantastic way to reduce fuel emissions and help the environment. Not only will a bus or train get you where you need to be, but you can also get planning on work for the day ahead (or steal a quick nap). Another great way to reduce congestion and pollution is to arrange carpooling with friends and family, or fellow workers. This can mean fewer cars on the road, and by sharing the cost of fuel; it also helps to save some money along the way.
HAVE YOUR SHOPPING DELIVERED
If you arrange to have your weekly food shop delivered, the drivers typically have orders for a number of other households in the van with them, which means fewer cars have had to make the journey. Most major supermarkets offer this service, and if you remember to give the carrier bags back to the driver, they can be reused for other customers. Another thing to consider when it comes to shopping is to think about your buying habits in general, and perhaps reduce spending on items that you could live without.
HAVING A (GREEN) HOLIDAY
If you asked anybody what they thought the biggest cause of environmental damage that tourism causes, they’d probably say the pollution from the flight getting there. Yet, whilst that is a key concern, it’s not the only one. Of course, planes do release a lot of greenhouse gasses at high altitude, but what about the other negative effects such as habitat loss due to tourist development? We’re not in the business of recommending that you don’t have a holiday, but there are ways to ensure that that holiday is a green one.
GO LOCAL – CONSIDER A HOLIDAY AT HOME
Choosing to holiday here in Britain not only reduces fuel emissions from planes (and even more so if you don’t drive), but it also strengthens local infrastructure and helps the economy. There’s a lot to choose from as the country has plenty of exciting cities, beautiful landscape, rich historical sites and lots and lots of stunning coastline.
WHILST ABROAD – GO LOCAL
When you do decide to have a holiday overseas, a lot (but not all) popular destinations have attractive locally owned hotels or self-catering accommodation that is just as cheap as all-inclusive deals. The problem with larger resorts is that they tend to expand out in to larger areas, causing the loss of habitat for local wildlife, and they also redirect valuable resources (such as water, energy and materials) away from the community.
These were just a few examples of what can be done to make your travel a bit more environmentally conscious. Send us a tweet @HIPPOBAG with your own suggestions on how to have a greener lifestyle.