The world produces more than 400 million tons of plastic EVERY year. Plastic waste production is expected to skyrocket in the coming years, with a further increase of 50% due between 2015-2025. As many as 51 trillion micro plastic particles – 500 times more than the stars in our galaxy – litter our seas, seriously threatening marine wildlife from small turtles to blue whales.
Plastic is not the only threat to the planet, global energy related carbon emissions hit a record high in 2017. Places we call paradise will not stay like that for long if we carry on as we are.
So if these stats make you sad and you would like to be a more environmentally conscious traveller, check out these easy tips on becoming a more sustainable eco-friendly traveller.
1. Avoid plastic bottles
Starting with an easy one. Get yourself a reusable water bottle like my water.org which filters water so you can use it round the world without having to worry about getting sick or contributing to plastic pollution. Win-win!
2. Carry a reusable tote bag
More durable than plastic bags if you’re doing some shopping. I mine from H & M.
3. Purchase swimwear made from recycled ocean plastic
My new favourite swimwear brand is Batoko. Not only is their swim suits recycled from ocean plastic, there are so many cute designs to choose from. They also a fit amazingly.
4. Say no to plastic straws and cutlery
When eating out try and avoid single use plastic cutlery and straws. Try to get in the habit of carrying your own bamboo straw and cutlery. They don’t take up much room at all.
5. Make conscious food choices
Try to eat local where you can. Less transport = reduced carbon footprint. Leading research suggests that reducing your meat and dairy intake single biggest way to reduce your environmental impact on the planet. Vegetarian or vegan food is often cheaper so more money to spend on fun activities and further reducing your carbon footprint.
6. Walk, bike or use public travel to get around
Less CO2 emissions and more exploration. If you’ve got time why not plan your trip using only public transport? This website shows you how. Or another option, plan a staycation where you can definitely reach you destination via public transport.
7. Get involved in a beach clean
This is becoming more and more popular, check with your hotel if they know of any planned or see if you can find any events on Facebook. Or even do your own, take a bag with you if you’re heading to the beach and pick up any rubbish while you walk.
8. Use plastic free toiletries
Lush do a great range of naked shampoo, conditioners and shower gels. They last up to 80 washes! There are lots of other smaller brands that can be found on Etsy, that I’m yet to try out.
9. Pick coral friendly sun screen
Brands such as Stream2Sea, prevent damage to precious coral reefs.
10. Go paperless
Most airlines now allow you to use boarding passes on your phone, for all other bookings have all your correspondence for your trip in a dedicated email folder or use apps like Tripit.
Small changes like these can and do make a huge difference, once everyone catches on. You can find out your carbon footprint here.