As a planet, we have reached a stage where we can no longer hide from the climate emergency we are facing in the next 50 years. Drastic change is necessary in our daily lives to reduce our environmental impact and that means every single one of us adjusting the way we run our households.
We know the basics, reusable bottles, shopping bags and turning the tap off while brushing our teeth, but there are so many more ways we can all adapt our lifestyles to make our homes more eco-friendly and help to avert the climate crisis. Not sure where to start?
Enter Google’s new interactive game: Your Plan, Your Planet
Perhaps one of the best tools on the internet at the moment, it helps you track your weekly waste at home, offering tips on how to save money, energy and make your ‘stuff last longer’. The gamification of sustainable info is a trend that has taken off in recent months to engage with a younger audience, and Google’s version is leading the way.
The game is called ‘Your Plan, Your Planet’ and comes in four, distinct sections to help you navigate the different areas in your home. Each informative segment is engaging, easy to understand but best of all – realistic. These are all tips we can incoporate into our daily household routines.
Navigating through the orange Energy section, you will find tips and stats on the amount of energy you waste keeping unused devices plugged in. The one that shocked us most was that American households’ idle energy use is the equivalent of the energy generated by 50 large power plants in a year. Unplug that phone charger when you’re not using it!
Discover the price our planet is paying for fast fashion by learning that out of 100 billion garments produced every year worldwide, under 1% are recycled. The game provides tips on renting clothes for a special occasion, rather than forking out on something you might only wear once, and encourages you to take part in Fashion Friday. Every Friday, wear clothing you haven’t worn in a long while, before deciding if you want to keep, resell, reuse or donate it.
Google says, “Fast fashion has given us ‘disposable fashion,’ clothes so cheap that people can afford to buy new ones constantly. In the process, our society has developed a sense of shame regarding repeat fashion appearances, which has devastating environmental consequences.”
This bit it is all about food waste at home. Did you know that throwing away a small amount of mouldy fruit/veg/bread every week is the equivalent to wasting five school buses full of water every year. Read all about how to make your food last longer and where to place items in the fridge.
The blue Water section recommends buying a water-smart showerhead and gives you great facts like this one: dishwashers use almost half the amount of energy than hand washing. There we were trying to use our dishwashers less to save on energy…who knew?
Try it out here and share this article with friends and family – we can all start making a difference in our homes, we just need to learn how to do it first.
Words: Maeve Campbell