As the global Covid-19 pandemic continues, and these worrying times continue, one piece of good news that has come out of the situation is the positive impact lockdown has had on our environment.
With more people staying at home than ever and a reduction in the use of polluting means of transport such as planes, cars and trains, it’s unsurprising that carbon emissions in these areas have decreased – and, with the UK now having gone two months without burning coal to fuel power, although climate change is still a global threat, it has been widely reported that our impact as a human race – and as individuals – has decreased.
One area where we may actually be increasing our emissions, however, is in our homes. While the majority of us have been enjoying unseasonably warm weather over the past few weeks – and taking advantage of those limited amounts of time we’ve been allowed outdoors to bask in the sunshine – more recently, temperatures have dropped again, sparking a momentary return to turning up the central heating.
Add to that the increase in use of electronics such as TVs and computers to fill the extra time at home, plus meals being cooked at home that would usually have been eaten cold at work or school (think hot, homemade lunches in place of sandwiches) and most of us are likely to be consuming more energy in our homes than usual.
So, as lockdown – albeit in a looser sense – continues, what can we all be doing to keep our carbon footprint – and ultimately, our impact on the Ocean – in check?
Spend more time outdoors
Whilst its important to continue heeding government guidelines with regards to social distancing, spending more time in your garden or out on long, countryside walks will reduce the time you spend indoors, expending unnecessary energy.
Avoid driving where possible and spend time exercising – whether on foot or by bike – in the vicinity of your home.
Read, don’t watch
Instead of turning on the TV for yet another Netflix binge, why not pick up a book instead and do some good, old-fashioned reading? Aside from cutting back on your electricity usage, spending time away from screens and blue light in favour of a good page-turner has been shown to decrease stress and anxiety and improve sleep quality. It’s a win-win.
If reading really isn’t your cup of tea, then there are plenty of other screen-free ways to help the Ocean, too – why not try drawing, painting or doing a puzzle?
Salads over soups
No, this is not dietary advice, but simply a way to cut down the amount of energy you’re using on cooking. On warmer days, why not opt for cold salad and add your favourite toppings? Other foods which are just as tasty when eaten cold are sandwiches, fruit and snacks such as olives and crisps.
And don’t be afraid to use up those leftovers – if you’ve cooked a roast chicken over the weekend, then use the remaining scraps as toppings and filling for your sandwiches and salads, as this will also reduce your food waste.
We ca all do our bit to help our Ocean – and it doesn’t even have to be difficult. If we all make small changes like these then they will add up to create a positive impact – reducing climate change and ensuring a healthier future for the Ocean that we all depend on.
Plus, it’ll save you a bit of extra money, too – which is something we could all do with during a global pandemic.