Just watched David Attenborough’s A Life on Our Planet? Here’s how we can decrease our environmental impact
The release of David Attenborough’s new documentary “A Life on Our Planet” on Netflix has certainly provided a riveting glimpse into how steeply and rapidly the planet has changed over the last 94 years.
While the documentary has raised alarm bells over the state and future of the planet, there is hope, and there are things we can do to protect biodiversity, decrease our environmental impact, and mend the planet.
Perhaps one of the biggest takeaways from Attenborough’s latest doco was the need to stop growing, and reproducing, and start reusing what we already have, to be more sustainable and rebuild the natural world.
But how exactly do we decrease our environmental impact?
1. Use Renewable energy
Renewable energy is produced using natural resources that are constantly replaced and never run out. Just as there are many natural sources of energy, there are many renewable energy technologies, such as Solar Power, Wind Power and Hydropower. Moving away from non-renewable energy sources such as coal and gas towards these eco-friendly options is a crucial step in our fight against climate change.
2. Halt deforestation
Forests cover over 30% of the Earths land, and are a home for many wild animals, and are an eco-system integral to the health of this planet. Deforestation is the permanent removal of trees to make room for something besides forest. This can include clearing the land for agriculture or grazing, or using the timber for fuel, construction or manufacturing. Forests are crucial for regulating rainfall, preventing floods, and absorbing greenhouse gases and CO2. As documentary asserts, we must halt deforestation and help “re-wild” the earth.
3. Eat sustainably
Following a largely plant-based diet, with a focus on eating foods such as fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds, oils, whole grains, legumes, and beans would require only half the land we currently use for food production, and we’d also be happier and healthier because of it.
Further, reducing our food waste would also be a significant step towards fixing climate change. An average house in Victoria discards of roughly $2,200 worth of food every year, which ends up decaying in landfill and creating avoidable greenhouse gases. By creating a “eat me first” box of food about to go off, in both your homes pantry and fridge, you can cut down on your grocery bill and help reduce environmental damage.
4. Take Public transport
Bike riding and walking is a great way to get in your daily exercise while also reducing carbon emissions. When travelling a longer distance, opt for public transport like buses, trains and trams. Fewer cars on the road= less toxic pollutants.
5. Reduce, reuse, recycle
Buying less, shopping second-hand, consuming consciously and recycling appropriately all have a huge impact on our eco-footprint.
Over 800,000 tonnes of waste is disposed of within the City of Melbourne boundary every year, some of which is recycled, most of which goes to landfill. That’s a staggering amount. Luckily, we can help reduce this amount of waste by shopping second-hand.
By shopping second-hand, we can save valuable items from landfill, extend their lifecycle, and help decrease our reliance on fast and poorly made products that create pollutants during the manufacturing process. Hunting for items second-hand on apps like charityBay can also be fun. It’s a great opportunity to find unique goods that also support incredible community organisations and charities, so your second-hand shop can help incite positive change in a number of ways! When shopping, opt to seek out second-hand pieces first and brand new as a last resort.
For more information, read our article on how shopping second-hand can reduce your carbon footprint, particularly when it comes to fashion.
By also doing a quick google on how to recycle simple household items before we toss them out, we can help reduce the amount of waste un-necessarily heading to landfill every-day. Pieces such as fluorescent lights, paint and batteries can be dropped off at specialty processing sites, while other useful household items can be sold on charityBay. These unwanted household items can be turned into funds for registered Australian charities making positive community change, by reselling them on the charityBay app.
6. Give back to environmental organisations
Small, large, local and national charities such as the Sustainable Living Foundation Inc, North East Tasmania Land Trust Inc, Trees For Life Inc, Landcare Association Of South Australia Inc., Nature Conservation Margaret River Region Inc, Energy Innovation Co-operative Ltd, Zero Waste Victoria, Friends Of The Earth (Australia), AYCC, SEA LIFE Conservation Trust Incorporated and The Gillamii Centre Inc are all actively working towards making major changes in the environmental sector. By auctioning your unwanted and second-hand items on charityBay and donating the funds to these organisations, you can support the incredibly important work they do and join the fight against climate change.
Read more about environmentally focused Australian charities in our charity guide here:
By saving the planet, we are saving ourselves. If you have not yet seen the riveting documentary addressing the effects of climate change, we highly suggest you do so.
Download the charityBay app today to start making a difference for the causes you care about, and the planet!