Are you considering adopting a few green initiatives in the new year but are unsure where to start? The truth is, becoming more environmentally friendly isn’t as difficult as you might think. There are a few old habits you can break and simple ways you can reduce your carbon footprint at home that will benefit the environment. It’s just getting around to doing them.
At Co-operative Energy, we care about the world we live in, which is why, alongside our green ambition, we want to help our customers reach their goals of living more sustainably in 2017. We’ve recently launched our Green Pioneer tariff, an energy product offering 100% renewable energy and paperless billing, helping us to reduce climate change. By offering this totally green tariff, we can help others who are interested in going green.
A new year signifies an opportunity to make some changes. Even the smallest green alternative could have a big impact on the world. If you’re considering becoming more environmentally friendly in 2017, why not adopt one of these easy green resolutions?
Green resolutions: How to be more environmentally friendly
1. Don’t throw away items you can recycle
From batteries to plastic bottles, making a point of recycling items that can be reused is one of the simpler steps to going green. In the UK, an estimated 13 million plastic bottles are recycled each year, while recycling just one plastic bottle can conserve enough energy to light a 60-watt lightbulb for up to six hours. Why wouldn’t you recycle?
2. Upcycle your old furniture
A staggering 10 million household items are sent to landfill each year by local authorities, and three million of these could be reused. By upcycling, redesigning and reusing your old furniture, you won’t just cut down on waste, you’ll also save money!
Want to find out more about upcycling? Read our blog on how to get involved with the latest sustainability trend.
3. Turn your appliances off standby
According to the Energy Saving Trust, UK households could save up to £80 each year by turning appliances off standby. The devices most likely to be left on are televisions and phone chargers. Cut down your energy usage and prolong the life of your devices by not resorting to standby.
4. Swap driving for walking
British roads are the most congested in Europe, according to a study by data company Inrix. To reduce air pollution associated with motor vehicle traffic, opt for walking, cycling or car sharing.
5. Opt for LED lightbulbs
LED lightbulbs use an impressive 90% less energy than standard lightbulbs, and can last for 10 years or more. By changing 20 bulbs to LED, you could save up to £300 each year!
Did you know we sell LED lightbulbs via our online store?
Who’s becoming greener in 2017
It isn’t just us at Co-operative Energy who have been embracing green initiatives. Globally-recognised organisations have made landmark decisions to purchase their energy from renewable sources too. 2017 is the year for going green.
Offices housing over 60,000 members of staff at Google, plus its data centres, will be powered by 100% renewable energy from 2017. Back in 2012, Google made the pledge to rely 100% on clean energy, an aim it will be reaching this year. The internet giant has since become one of the biggest buyers of renewable energy, with commitments to purchase 2.6 gigawatts of wind and solar energy in total.
Las Vegas is a city also adopting green initiatives. Planned for almost a decade, in 2017, the city’s government-run infrastructure will be powered entirely by renewable energy, including 140 buildings and streetlights. Saving the city approximately $5 million (£4.4 million) per year, this green ingenuity is helping Las Vegas avoid using fossil fuels, helping to significantly cut down its carbon emissions.
IKEA has announced plans for its 46th solar project in America, which will involve installing solar panels on the roof of its new Columbus store, opening in autumn 2017. The furniture company has allocated $2.6 billion (£2.1 billion) to invest in renewable energy until 2020, focusing on photovoltaic technology. Currently, there are more than 700,000 solar panels atop IKEA stores around the world.
Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft, supported by some of the world’s leading entrepreneurs, has launched the Breakthrough Energy Ventures Fund (BEV), a $1 billion (£790 million) fund aimed at reducing greenhouse gases by financing green technology. To meet goals set out in the Paris Agreement, BEV will consider investments for various clean energy sectors, including agriculture, electricity generation and storage, transportation and energy system efficiency – in over 20 countries.
By investing in green tech products and services, BEV will help overcome the hurdles often faced by start-ups or those in the early stages of commercialisation, assisting with getting clean energy products to market.
2017 brings with it fantastic opportunities to make a few green changes.
Want to find out more about how to go green? Here are 7 sustainable life hacks!