Monthly Eco Tips

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August 2021

To help us relax over the Summer, here are some strategies for tackling eco- (and covid-) anxiety, c/o Dr Jan Maskell, occupational psychologist:

  • Join social networks for support, for example a local Journey to Zero Waste group on Facebook
  • Appreciate and share what you have and what you do well; show genuine gratitude to others
  • Focus on what you can do and what you can influence - and take steps in that direction
  • Communicate to others the value of pro-environmental behaviours and highlight examples

July 2021

An issue very much still with us, in more ways than one - plastic waste:

  • Go prepared so you can refuse disposable cutlery, drinking straws, plastic plates, etc
  • Instead of cling film, try waxed cotton wraps; not cheap but reusable and compostable
  • Can you air it and wear it again? Washing synthetic fabrics puts microfibres into the environment
  • Use refillable bottles (not just on one day!) - https://www.refill.org.uk/world-refill-day/

June 2021

Let’s use the long hours of daylight to appreciate the wonderful world that God made:

May 2021

While some human activities are restricted, we can still do our bit to help nature to help us:

  • Bee-friendly ideas - https://friendsoftheearth.uk/nature/beefriendly-plants-every-season
  • Use a circle of crushed egg shells around each seedling to protect them from slugs
  • Protect plants from late frosts by making mini greenhouses from old clear plastic bottles
  • Encourage beetles with a patch of leaves and twigs; they’ll feed on less welcome insects

April 2021

We're so fortunate to have water on tap with which to wash our hands, so let's not waste it:

  • Collect rainwater for watering your garden, and use it at cooler times of day to reduce evaporation
  • Compare the amount of water used in producing your food - http://tinyurl.com/hywterv
  • Use more water efficient taps and showerheads, sometimes called aerators or regulators
  • Buy a pre-owned product, or borrow or share it, to avoid water use in manufacturing

March 2021

Remember these tips by their initials, as in 'use your loaf' (of bread – rhyming slang for head):

  • Local, seasonal produce keeps us more connected to nature
  • Organic food in the UK is certified by the Soil Association; see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soil
  • Animal-friendly products are one way we can demonstrate care for our fellow creatures
  • Fairtrade Fortnight runs 22nd Feb to 7th Mar 2021 but why not help developing world farmers and workers all year around

February 2021

As and when we’re allowed to travel again, there will be choices:

January 2021

Guessing that there’ll be some clearing out after Christmas, here are some reminders:

  • Check council recycling schemes here - https://www.recyclenow.com/local-recycling
  • Look out for churches and schools (etc) that partner with one or more specific-item recycling schemes
  • Buy products made of recycled materials, so helping to make the circular economy go around
  • Give unwanted items to charity, or offer them online - for example via https://www.ilovefreegle.org

December 2020

Wishing you a more eco-conscious Christmas:

  • Start eating from your freezer to make room for leftovers from Christmas meals
  • Make gift guessing more difficult by repurposing packaging from something else
  • For that extra sparkle, look out for biodegradable glitter
  • Recycled fabric Morsbags - https://morsbags.com – are one reusable alternative to wrapping paper

November 2020

I’m sure readers will know many more ‘traditional’ cleaning methods than this selection I found online:

  • Clean your fridge with a damp cloth sprinkled with baking soda (= baking powder = bicarbonate of soda)
  • Steam clean your microwave by heating water and vinegar (and lemon for smell) in it, then wipe it down
  • Disguise vinegar smells by infusing it with citrus peels, herbs, rose petals, or cinnamon sticks (etc)
  • Dissolve and buff-off rust with a ball of aluminium foil and vinegar, scrub gently, then recycle the foil

October 2020

With harvest celebrations fresh in our minds, this month we literally have food for thought:

  • 1st October is World Vegetarian Day, “to promote the joy, compassion and life-enhancing possibilities of vegetarianism” (or at least eating less meat)
  • 4th October is the feast day for St Francis of Assisi whose love and care for creation is well documented
  • 16th October is UN World Food Day – see http://www.fao.org/world-food-day (including a poster contest)
  • Have fun foraging in hedgerows for blackberries, plums, apples, etc; eating local, seasonal food is best for the planet, too

September 2020

While we all wish for more warm weather, inevitably the temperature will drop, so here are some things to check before it does:

  • Top up to the recommended thickness for loft insulation, 250-270mm (10-11 inches) of glass or mineral wool (other materials are available; some are more effective)
  • Use a Chimney Sheep (or equivalent) to block an open fireplace when it’s not in use; https://www.chimneysheep.co.uk/
  • Seal up through-draughts (unless they’re needed to ventilate an appliance!)
  • Add hot water tank and pipe lagging where necessary


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