Recently we teamed up with Friends of the Earth to find out what green changes the Great British public are making for the planet in 2016.
The 2,000 answers we received as part of our Basecamp competition included new parents committing to re-useable nappies, a woman organizing an environmentally-friendly wedding, and one man who will be eco to the death – by booking a plot in an eco-friendly burial site.
Though each answer was unique, there were a few themes in the green changes people were planning. Here are the top five tweaks people are making to their lifestyles to help save the planet:
5. Buy local, organic or seasonal food or grow your own
Of those planning to get food closer to home, an incredible 82% were growing their own veg and herbs in an allotment or garden.
4. Drive less, carpool, or use an eco-friendly car
More than half of those cutting down on vehicle emissions this year were doing it by driving less – but 44% were planning on making their car journeys less impactful by using or buying an electric, hybrid of more fuel-efficient car.
3. Reduce, reuse and recycle more
Nearly 10% of people were planning on reducing purchases, reusing or upcycling their possessions or recycling more. We love this answer from Kayleigh, who was planning on avoiding ‘using wrapping paper - I will only use recycled gift bags or other more environmentally friendly ways of giving presents!’
2. Bike or walk more
13% people said they would be biking and walking more, with 28% of these committing to commute by bike instead of using the car. We had an answer from Ursula, who said she was getting a child bike seat for her 6 month old ‘so we can get on two wheels not 4’, and from Martin, who was planning on cycling any distance under 10 miles this year.
1. Save energy at home
Our top answer with 15% was from those planning to save energy at home through better insulation and heating, from those making tweaks (using radiator reflectors and turning the thermostat down 2 degrees) to bigger changes, like boiler upgrades and air source heat pumps.
People are also investing in more efficient appliances and low-energy bulbs, and becoming more conscious of how they wash their clothes, by avoiding the tumble dryer and using the washing machine in the middle of the day instead of the evening.
How can you make a small green change?
We’ll be sharing more ideas of small green changes you can make over the summer – from holidaying in the UK to volunteering or supporting a green organisation like Friends of the Earth.
Of course, you can always be like the 3% of people who are planning on using a greener energy supplier at their home or work…
Switch to Good Energy today and you could cut your personal carbon footprint by up to 50%.