New Year, New Choices: small switches you can make for a more sustainable 2022
January is considered to be a month of new beginnings. We make resolutions to better our lifestyles, our diets, our finances or even our relationships. Whether you’re someone who ditches the new year’s goals after a few weeks, or you try your best to persevere; there are lots of things you can do to make a habit stick.
It can help to break down your big resolution into small, achievable goals. This makes the task feel more manageable and you’ll have lots of little wins to celebrate throughout the year.
Being more sustainable can feel like a daunting task. But, there are lots of small switches you can make in your day-to-day life that help to contribute towards your end goal.
So, if you’re trying to be more environmentally friendly in 2022, here’s our guide to easy swaps you can make, to help achieve your goal.Explore sustainable alternatives to leather and plastic...
The leather industry is one of the most environmentally harmful industries on the planet. Chromatic tanning processes use harmful chemicals and pollute waterways. There is also a direct link to the cattle industry which is responsible for deforestation around the world.
But there are plenty of sustainable alternatives nowadays, and we convert a wide range of materials into high quality, sustainable designs.
By repurposing materials like ocean-bound plastic, recycled clothes and recycled leather, we have created a range of plastic alternatives that are sourced responsibly and sustainably, including:
- ELeather (made by upcycling unused leather which is often destined for landfill).
- Apple leather (made from 50% apple peels and 50% bio-based polyurethane. By repurposing apple skin, we prevent them from decomposing and producing methane that is also a major contributor to climate damage).
Duratex (made by combining ocean bound plastic and recycled clothes into a unique fabric mix that is soft, durable and extremely hard wearing).
Our current recycling systems can be inefficient. One study, published in 2017 in the Science Advances journal, which looked at all the plastic ever made and where it ended up, found:
“Of the 8.3 billion metric tons that has been produced, 6.3 billion metric tons has become plastic waste. Of that, only nine percent has been recycled. The vast majority—79 percent—is accumulating in landfills or in the natural environment as litter.”
Unfortunately, we cannot control what happens to our waste once we bag it and put it out for collection, but we can all think twice before buying cheap products that aren’t built to last.
This includes things like dog beds and old accessories that no longer suit your pup’s needs. Instead of throwing them in the bin or putting them out for recycling, consider donating your dog’s old clothing, toys and bedding to your local shelter to reduce waste and help a dog in need.
Reduce food waste...
Food production accounts for just over a quarter (26%) of our planet’s global greenhouse gas emissions. But sadly, much of these emissions come from the production of food that is never eaten.
Around one-quarter of the calories the world produces is thrown away, spoiled or spilled in supply chains; wasted by retailers and restaurants and even in our own homes. To produce this food we needed land, water, energy, and fertiliser, which all comes at an environmental cost. A study published in Science by Poore and Nemecek in 2018 found that around 6% of our greenhouse gas emissions come from wasted food.
This year, lower your impact by learning how to properly store fruit and vegetables to prevent them going off too quickly and consider introducing a compost bin to your garden to repurpose any perishable food scraps into compost to help your garden flourish throughout the year.
Ditch single-use plastic...
Eliminating plastic entirely can be time consuming and expensive, but there are some small changes many of us can implement without too much difficulty. By purchasing a reusable water bottle for yourself and a collapsible bowl for your dog, you can make your weekend walks a little kinder on our planet.
Swap to biodegradable dog poo bags...
You might already know that many plastic dog poo bags are used annually across the world (around 500 million to be exact), but you might not know that each bag will take around 500 years to biodegrade. As they break down, they release microplastics into the soil and waterways, causing havoc for the surrounding environment and the animals that live there.
A simple swap that any responsible owner can do is to choose biodegradable, compostable poo bags. There’s plenty of options available and by making the swap, you can reduce plastic pollution and lower your carbon footprint. Biodegradable dog poo bags are completely plastic free, which means they can break down into non-toxic organic matter, which won’t degrade soil quality, like the traditional plastic alternative.