Seven ways to reduce your environmental impact in 2019 | Part 2 – the kitchen!
12th March 2019
Posted by SUEZ recycling and recovery UK.
The kitchen is described as the heart of the home. Many of us spend a lot of time here, preparing meals, socialising with family and friends and of course cleaning and washing-up – but how can we be more environmentally savvy in our kitchens – recycle more and reduce waste?
The kitchen items we commonly throw away often have another purpose and are easy to reuse or can be recycled, however they often end up in our black bin. We separate paper, plastic and metal packaging and, usually in the UK, our local councils collect it from the kerbside to recycle these materials into new products. We all know this, and do our best to recycle, but it is time to think about what else we can do?
Needless to say there are many ways to be more eco-friendly in the kitchen, but when it comes to kitchen it mostly starts with what you bring in from supermarkets, home stores and takeaway outlets!
Here are a few pearls of ‘eco-wisdom’ that we have found, to help you put your kitchen waste to good use:
1. Make your own compost, to grow vegetables – a circular household trick! Did you know that organic waste such as vegetable off-cuts, tea bags and coffee grounds make great compost. Many local authorities collect our food waste, however we can make our own organic compost by installing a composter which can then be used to feed our vegetable patches and flower beds!
2. Limit over-purchasing by always shopping with a list – writing a meal plan and taking a list to the supermarket will mean that we are more likely to buy only what we need, reducing over purchasing and waste. This will not only reduce waste, but help to save money at the same time. Win, win!
3. Rinse and recycle – sounds simple right? Well it is, many products that we buy are packaged to protect them during distribution and to prolong shelf life – much of these materials are recyclable. Remember to check the label and rinse and recycle before putting with other household recycling.
4. Shop locally – farm shops and packaging free supermarkets are a great alternative to stocking up on fruit and vegetables that are not wrapped in plastic and are organic. Many supermarkets are encouraging customers to take our own Tupperware and reusable shopping bags to make our trips completely single-use plastic and packaging free!
5. Water-friendly dishwashing – purchase a dishwasher. A single load of hand-washed dishes can require up to 20 gallons of water while an energy-efficient dishwasher needs just 4.5 gallons to run. It may be expensive upfront but could be worth it in the long run.
6. How to reduce plastic waste – collect difficult-to-recycle items such as crisp packets – SUEZ’s partner TerraCycle’s scheme recycles items such as crisp packets, and turns them into products such as park benches and waste bins. Find local communal collection point, where anyone can take their used crisp packets for recycling.
7. Use less energy – upgrade old inefficient appliances with energy-efficient alternatives and recycle your old ones. Remember to always close the fridge and unplug any items when you are not using them. When possible use your microwave as this uses less energy than your oven!
We’d love to hear more about your tried and tested methods of minimising your impact on the environment, so please do comment and share them with us below.
In return for your eco-wisdom, we will select seven of your best ideas to receive the “Save pounds and the planet” book, which is a green guide to saving the planet and your purse that’s quirkier, easier and smarter.
It is our vision to live in a society where there is no more waste. We all can make simple changes to reduce the amount of waste we produce and by being more savvy with our purchasing habits, planning better and being more resourceful. We as individuals will be able to improve our impact on the planet!
For the rest of the series please see below
- circular economy
- food waste
- household recycling
- increase recycling
- kitchen recycling
- plastic recycling
- waste reduction
- water reduction