Scientific evidence has increasingly shown that our planet is now at a tipping point. As humans continue to exploit nature and its resources to fuel economic development, it is more important than ever to relook the ways we live.
While a zero-carbon future might not quite materialise in the near future, nevertheless you can change your lifestyle today to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and your carbon footprint. Taking a holistic approach towards changing your lifestyle can do a lot for the climate crisis. These include changing our energy consumption, mode of transportation, and even diet.
Below are some easy ways to help you lead a more eco-friendly lifestyle.
Consume less meat
Doing so means there would be less intensive farming and agricultural carbon emissions, which negatively impact our climate. For example, cows are known to be a livestock that not only contribute to methane gases but also drives massive deforestation to make way for soya bean production, which is used as animal feed. Also, relook how you buy meat: Choose those from a local butcher or organic stores instead of purchasing from a supermarket to minimise food wastage.
Reduce household energy use
The burning of coal and other fossil fuels is one of the biggest single contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, one of the main culprits of global warming. Reduce household energy use such as switching off lights when not in use, or using more energy-efficient bulbs such as compact fluorescent lights. Alternatively, whenever possible, opt for clean energy – hydropower, solar and wind – that reduces your household’s overall carbon footprint, improving general air and water quality.
By doing so at vintage stores or online marketplaces, you can help reduce the supply and manufacture of first-hand goods, which is highly detrimental to the environment. The fast-fashion industry produces a lot of new goods, which result in pollution that is highly toxic to the environment, including the pollution of oceans with microplastics. This is exacerbated by the clothes and accessories that are left unsold, which would be burned or dumped in a landfill.
Did you know that transportation is responsible for 24 per cent of direct carbon emissions from fuel combustion, based on a 2019 report by the International Energy Agency on global transportation emissions? Instead of driving a car, switch to public transportation or take the bicycle. Those who still prefer to drive can consider committing to a carpool or switching to an electric vehicle. If driving is a must, opt for fuel-efficient vehicles, and pay attention to your fuel consumption and distance travelled.
Buy products with fewer packaging
Always purchase products with fewer packaging. Excess and multi-layered packaging only ends up in a landfill, which worsens the global environmental issue of waste disposal. Also, choose packaging that is biodegradable.