Living a more environmentally friendly life while also having a life is easier than you think.
Change your bottles
It takes 162g of oil and seven litres of water to manufacture a one-litre bottle of water, creating over 100g of greenhouse gas emissions per empty bottle. Replace your plastic bottle with a reusable one. Alternatives: a Hydro Flask (from £26.50), which keeps iced water in the same condition for up to 24 hours (and hot water up to 12 hours); Brita’s Fill&Go (£9.99), which filters water as you drink.
The average tumble dryer cycle uses just over 4kWh of energy and produces around 1.8kg CO2. Ideally, you should dry your clothes outside (if all households with a tumble dryer dried one load of washing outside each week instead of by machine, they would save over a million tonnes of CO2 in a year). But, if you must tumble dry, put a dry towel in with your wet washing for the first 15-20 minutes of the cycle, which will help pull out moisture from the wet clothes.
Look to the loo
Toilets account for around 30% of water used in a household. There are a few things you can do easily to help conserve water. Where there is a split flush button, use the smaller button when you need a smaller volume of water and vice versa. Put a bubble-wrapped brick or bottle of pebbles in the cistern, which will displace some of the water and allow you to get the same flush pressure, but use up to half a gallon less water per flush. To check for leaks, add a few drops of food colouring to the cistern, wait one hour – if colouring appears in the toilet bowl, you have a leak.
Clean with vinegar
Avoid the chemicals and packaging of household cleaners by making your own. Mix ½ cup vinegar and ¼ cup baking soda into 2 litres water and use to get rid of hard water stains (like those annoying ones on the shower door), clean windows and mirrors, and to make chrome fixtures sparkle. To clean a shower head, fill a sandwich bag with the solution, tie it around the shower head and leave overnight.
Imagine if the gluten-free idea kicked in earlier, and had m ...