Sustainable Goals

Sustainable Living

Do you want to live more sustainably?  Why not set yourself some simple sustainable goals for 2024 to help you on your journey.

But before you set your goals let’s look at what “sustainable living” really means. 

In it’s simplest form it’s a philosophy that aims to reduce our negative social and environmental impacts by making positive changes in our lives to counteract climate change and other environmental issues.

Sustainable living encourages people to minimise their use of Earth’s resources and reduce the damage of human and environmental interactions. This fits neatly with the concept of the Zero Waste circular economy.

One way to measure the impact of the positive changes you make is to measure and track your carbon footprint.  There are lots of carbon footprint calculators available but one of my favourites is the WWF Footprint Calculator.

Goal Setting

Once you’ve decided that you’re going to set yourself some sustanable goals for 2024, the first thing to do is decide what they are going to be.

Goal setting is very personal and needs to be based on what’s important to you.  I find that creating a Mind Map helps me prioritise and put things in order of importance which helps with goal setting.  And, remember when setting goals they should be “SMART”

S – Specific

M – Measurable

A – Achievable

R – Relevant

T – Timely

To help you set your goals I’ve got some templates that you can download below, click on the image to download a printable version.

5 Simple Sustainable Goals for 2024

If you need some inspiration to get you started here are 5 Simple Sustainable Goals for 2024 that will help you set your own goals:

Buy Food Locally and in Season

The obvious advantages of buying local food that’s in season is that it reduces the impact of transporting it hundreds of miles and also reduces the impact of artificially growing food that’s out of season.

The carbon footprint for asparagus flown in from South America is 28 times higher than home grown asparagus due to the amount of energy required to fly the vegetable packs to the UK in refrigerated conditions.

So the first goal should be to buy more food produced locally and in season.  There are a number of ways you can achieve this, shop at your local farm shop or farmers’ market.  If you don’t have access to these another great way to ensure your food is produced in the UK is to look for the  Red Tractor Logo which shows that the product has been produced in the UK.

The Union Jack on our logo means your food has been produced entirely in the UK, with every step of the food journey checked and documented from farm to pack. All food and drink can be traced right back through the supply chain to the British farms it came from

Love British Food is a great resource with a local food directory plus lots of other useful information.

buy local food 5 Simple Sustainable Goals for 2023

Walk and Cycle More

Walk And Cycle More

A simple but effective way to be more sustainable is to reduce your car journeys and walk or cycle more.

Cycling has a carbon footprint of about 21g of CO2 per kilometre. That’s less than walking or getting the bus and less than a tenth the emissions of driving – Bikeradar

So next time you need to pop to the shop why not cycle or walk rather than jumping in your car and you’ll be working towards your second sustainable goal of 2023

sustainable goals - walk more

Reuse / Upcycle before you Recycl

We all know we should recycle rather than sending rubbish to landfill but recycling shouldn’t be top of our list; reusing or upcycling should come before it.

Recycling uses energy and virgin raw materials to produce new products and plastic items can only be downcycled as they lose quality each time they’re recycled and can therefore only be recycled 2 to 3 times.  Glass can be endlessly recycled without losing quality but it’s still better to reuse it first.

Next time you’re about to pop that glass jar or plastic bottle in the recycling take a minute to think if you could use it for something else.  Check out my Blog post for Zero Waste Tips for cleaning and reusing old glass jars

Do A Digital Declutter

This might not be something that springs to mind when you are considering how to live a more sustainable life.  However, have you ever thought how much energy is consumed from storing your old emails?

Email providers store our emails on their servers which are consuming energy 24 hours a day. This means the more messages we keep the more servers they need to store them, and the more energy consumed.

A study by ICF International and McAfee estimated that 1 GB of email uses 32.1kwh per year.

And, Cleanfox estimates that an email is on average responsible for the emission of 10 grams of Co2 per year, and if the Internet were a country, it would be the sixth biggest electricity consumer in the world.

The telecoms company Orange say:

if every single person in France deleted 50 emails, the energy savings would be equivalent to turning the Eiffel tower’s lights off for 42 years, or to New York City not consuming any electricity for 4 hours.

So, why not start saving energy today and clean up your inbox. For tips on how to keep your inbox clear check out my Blog  Clean Up Your Email Inbox and Help Save Energy.

digital declutter

Reduce Your Energy Consumption

We’re all looking for ways to reduce our energy consumption at the moment and it’s worth remembering that all those small little changes can add up to £ savings as well as reducing our use of the Earth’s resources.

​​​​​​Did you know that those “vampire” devices, (the ones that consume power during the night when left on standby) could be costing you around £147 a year.​​​​​​​​
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Turning your heating down by 1 degree could save you £80 a year and switching to LED lights could save you £200 a year.​​​​​​​​

Here are a few tips on how to save energy and help reach your sustainable Goals for 2023:

  • Close all doors & use draft excluders.
  • Switch to LED bulbs & turn off when not in use
  • Keep curtains open during the day to let sun in and close in the evening to keep the heat in
  • Use a slow cooker or airfryer
  • Control your heating room by room.
  • Turn heating stats down by 1 degree.
  • Wear layers & a cosy pair of socks
  • Use a hot water bottle.
  • Wash clothes at 30°C and give them an extra spin to reduce drying time
  • Use a dehumidifier to dry laundry.
  • Take shorter showers.
  • Don’t leave electrical items on standby

One of the ways we’re reducing our energy consumption this year is by installing a Smart Heating system which let’s us control our heating room by room. If you’d like to find out how much it can save take a look at How Using a Smart Heating System Can Save You Money

I hope you’ve found this useful and now feel you can set yourself 5 Simple Sustainable Goals for 2024; and when you do I’d love to hear what they are.

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