I’m now part of a parish working group to raise awareness about Climate Emergency and encourage action – we all need to do things differently.
I have been looking at this for many years, having been part of the Green Tourism Scheme (Gold Award for my tourism accommodation here in Cornwall). So lots of the changes and suggestions I looked at then are now part of my daily life choices.

For our parish Climate Emergency Action first event I have compiled a list: ‘50 Things We Can Do‘ which I hope will provide starting points for everyone new to this pathway of making better choices, and also encouraging even more efforts by those of us already involved with day-to-day choices that are better for the planet.

Here is my list so far.
Once it is finalised and on our new parish website. I’ll put a link here.

Your suggestions are welcome – I’ve already got a second list underway for 50 More Things We Can Do

Food and Nature
1Buy locally produced foodLow food-miles so fewer emissions, and fresher produce.
2Support local shops and marketsFood grown and purchased locally has less distance to travel, reducing transport emissions. 
3Grow your own vegetablesPick and eat – vegetables straight from the garden are so tasty!
4Buy MSC and ASC fish Helping to sustain our fish populations, MSC Marine Stewardship Council is the blue fish label applied only to wild fish or seafood from fisheries that have been certified to the MSC Fisheries Standard, a science-based set of requirements for sustainable fishing. ASC Aquaculture Stewardship Council is an independent, international non-profit organisation that manages certification and labelling programmes for responsible aquaculture. www.msc.org  www.asc-aqua.org
5Eat less meatIn the UK the NFU is clear that UK agriculture must be part of the Climate Emergency solution, see www.nfuonline.com/news/latest-news/achieving-net-zero-meeting-the-climate-change-challenge/ Cattle and sheep emit methane which is one of the greenhouse gases. The production of animal-based foods is associated with higher greenhouse gas emissions than plant-based foods, www.link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10584-014-1169-1Industrialised agriculture globally is responsible for 15% of global carbon emissions, with beef the biggest driver of deforestation, see www.worldwildlife.org/industries/beef . More than 80% of farmland is used for livestock but it produces just 18% of food calories and 37% of protein. www.worldwildlife.org
6Reduce dairy consumption
7Compost raw veg peelings; any food waste can go into a hot binSo easy to do – see advice from the Eden Project www.edenproject.com/learn/for-everyone/how-to-make-a-compost-heap-10-top-tips and www.greatgreensystems.com/shop/green-johanna-330-litre-hot-composter
8Wildlife spaces in your garden/allotmentEngland’s biodiversity is declining, and we can be part of the solution. State of Nature Report 2019
9Bee and butterfly friendly shrubs and flowersClimate heating is having an increasing impact on nature in the UK. State of Nature Report 2019 www.nbn.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/State-of-Nature-2019-England-27-09-19.pdf
10Water butt for your garden and plantsSave on your water bill.
11Plant a native treeCheck with our Parish wildlife experts.
Fashion and Lifestyle
12Embrace slow fashion – clothing that lastsFast Fashion is cheaply produced, poorly constructed clothing copying the latest catwalk styles, moved quickly through stores to maximise on current trends and profits. The fashion industry is the second biggest polluter in the world… However, there has been a rise in sustainable fashion brands who are putting people and the planet before profit. See www.ethicalconsumer.org and www.thegreenhubonline.com/2018/01/16/20-facts-about-the-fast-fashion-industry-that-will-shock-you/
13Buy pre-lovedCharity shops have great bargains and surprises.
14Repair and Re-useHow about starting a NHPCEA Project!
15FreecycleGive unwanted stuff away – charity shops can usually collect large items; see the Launceston Freecycle network https://my.freecycle.org
16UpcycleFrom fashion to furniture – find ways to turn discarded or unused items into something new. How about starting an Upcycling Project with your friends.
17RecycleSee local recycling information: www.cornwall.gov.uk/environment-and-planning/recycling-rubbish-and-waste/
18Use less paperAvoid unnecessary printing.
19Buy items made from recycled paperLook for the logo 
20Look for the FSC logo on paper and wood productsFSC Forest Stewardship Council is an international, non-governmental organisation dedicated to promoting responsible management of the world’s forests.
21Reduce plasticRetailers are getting on board with this difficult task. Look for items made from 100% recycled plastic. 
22Find alternatives to plasticFind ideas online: www.savesomegreen.co.uk , www.all-green.co.uk
23Walk/cycle moreCleaner than cars, and helping to keep fit and well!
24Drive less / car-share 
25Fuel-efficient drivingRAC advice: www.rac.co.uk/drive/advice/how-to/fuel-saving-tips/

26Reduce energy consumption – switch things offWe’re all responsible for the energy we use in our homes. There are many things you can do to reduce how much energy you use and reduce energy bills. See www.energysavingtrust.org.uk
27LED/Low energy light bulbsEasily available now at good prices
28Good home insulation and draught-proofingSee www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/home-insulation
29Switch to 100% renewable energy supplierEnergy from sustainable natural processes www.theccc.org.uk/tackling-climate-change/reducing-carbon-emissions  Look at comparison websites: www.simplyswitch.com/energy/guides/compare-green-energy/and check renewable policy eg. www.ecotricity.co.uk
30Invest in energy efficient appliancesAll household gadgets now have energy efficient ratings. See www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/home-energy-efficiency/home-appliances
31Use less waterOur water use at home contributes to our energy bills. See how to save water and water-efficient appliances: www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/home-energy-efficiency/saving-water
32Don’t overfill the kettleSee Waterwise advice, an independent, not-for-profit UK NGO focused on reducing water consumption in the UK: waterwise.org.uk
33Laundry wash on a low temperatureLook at the options on washing machines, including spin speed and eco-wash.
34Wash clothing less oftenOur water usage contributes to our energy bill. www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/home-energy-efficiency/saving-water
35Use a washing lineAir-drying is free!
36Solar thermal water heatingwww.energysavingtrust.org.uk/renewable-energy/heat/solar-water-heating
37Solar PV panelswww.energysavingtrust.org.uk/renewable-energy/electricity/solar-panels

Thoughts & Actions
38Switch to ethical banking and financeSee www.ethicalconsumer.org
39Read/listen to podcasts about climateHere’s two on BBC Radio: Costing the Earth: The State of Nature 2019 Report How sick is the planet and what can we do to reverse the damage? www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0004sj9and Crossing Continents – Finland’s Race to Go Carbon Neutral www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000cc10 
40Watch an environmental documentaryFor example: ‘Meat: A Threat To Our Planet?’ www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000bqsh/meat-a-threat-to-our-planet
41Sign petitionsYes, they do have an impact! The key is to sign the ones who have the power to add political pressure from major organisations such as Greenpeace
42Write lettersTo councillors, your MP, businesses etc
43Create change in your workplaceThese sites may help: www.greenmybusiness.co.uk ,  www.ethicalsuperstore.com 
44Join a Climate Emergency Action projectSo far we have: Tamar Valley Food Hub starting a delivery point in the parish in 2020
45Start a Climate Emergency Action projectSuggestions: Fashion Upcycling, Repairs Workshop, Zero-Waste Club – I’m sure you’ll think of more!
46Show your support
47Go on a marchAnd meet up with other who share your concerns
48Have a conversationSharing thoughts helps us all think about our choices
49Get politicalIn 2019 the Climate Emergency entered the political mainstream.
50Do less harmOur choices matter – what we eat, where we shop, what we wear, how we live. We can make better choices and have the power to shape the kind of world we want to live in.

Have hope!

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