5 Green Ways to Save Cash in 2018
In 2018, there are a dizzying number of ways to tackle going green. For many, however, so many environmental solutions are sometimes much more expensive than their less eco-friendly alternatives. Environmentally safe soaps and personal care products are great, but they will end up costing you hundreds in the long run compared to regular options. Buying organic, locally produced foods is all well and good, but they can cost a lot more than their imported or chemically treated cousins. While you may be happy to fork out to help save the planet, many of us simply don’t have the resources. Here are 5 Eco-Tips for those people to try in 2018 that are not only green, but will save a decent amount of money as well.
Taking a Staycation
Think about taking your vacation local this year – see what your home country has to offer. If you live in the city, there will more things for you to do than you could ever squeeze into a single holiday abroad anyway. If you live in the country then check out the local national parks, historical sights, towns and villages – we guarantee you you won’t have been to even half of what’s on offer. Holidaying at home instead of flying abroad is a far more sustainable and eco-friendly option, and the savings you’ll make by not paying for those exorbitant tickets will allow you to take many more than that one big vacation a year.
Reduce meat consumption by getting creative
Veganism is now a natural part of our social fabric. Restaurant consultancy Baum + Whiteman predicted that the global number 1 food trend for 2018 will be “plant-based”, and that reflects the last 15 years of growing interest in Veganism. It’s grown steadily but surely and its not going away anytime soon. A big argument from the movement is environmental – industrial scale pastoral farming is harming our planet, as covered in some now very famous documentaries like Cowspiracy. What’s more, meat is becoming even less affordable. Here are some standard prices for cheaper cuts of meat:
1kg – Chicken: £8-9 1kg
Beef Mince: £7 1kg
Compare that to a meat alternative like tofu or quorn and those seem very steep indeed:
1kg – Tofu: £5
1kg – Quorn: £6
It’s true though that despite their attractive price-tag, quorn and tofu are famously not that interesting to cook with. Here’s our advice – get creative! A new wave of vegan alternatives to your much loved classics have rejuvenated what it means to substitute. Produce such delights as: Tofish – a seaweed wrapped tofu bar coated in batter and deep-fried (sounds weird but it’s genuinely delicious, and tastes very authentic). Vegan Fried Chicken – uses nutritional yeast as a good chicken-y alternative. With a bit of experimentation, the gentle learning curve of making simple substitutions will have you squashing your budget and your carbon footprint without missing your favourite meals.
Take a look at the new ‘sharing economy’, services under it including BlaBlaCar and AirBnB. These platforms are driven by ‘collaborative consumption’ and are linked by their emphasis on more efficiently using the resources around you – take spare seats in cars and free living rooms over cab companies and hotels. A recent addition to the sharing economy, Fat Lama allows anyone to rent out anything to anyone, insured. Instead of wasting money on buying something people only use once, they can now rent it from a professional looking to make a little more from their gear – and they usually charge a lot less than standard rental houses. Fat Lama is slowly but surely making the environment a little healthier by reducing harmful factory production . The next time you need something – from a bike to a drone – rent it from your neighbours. You’ll save the planet, and a bit of cash along the way.
Cut Down on Plastic Packaging in the Kitchen
In 2016, the Guardian reported that only a third of recyclable plastic packaging was actually recycled by all British households. The main reason? Sorting out the recycling is a frustrating and time-consuming process which is relatively unrewarding, especially if you don’t think you’ve done it right. Here are two ways to reduce the amount of packaging you produce in the kitchen, making that process just a little simpler.
A) Get A Soda Stream
If you like soft drinks, or even just fizzy water, you may benefit from investing in a sodastream. For less than £100 you can buy a sodastream which carbonate water at the click of a button resulting in a fresh fizz every time. Cut down on plastic bottle use like this today!
B) Ditch Coffee Pods
Coffee pods have taken the world by storm in recent years, and despite their convenience, they are expensive, absolutely terrible for the planet, and you are missing out on the pure joy of making coffee with a proper cafetiere or a drip filter. If you need that caffeine hit, put down that plastic pod and pick up a hobby to last a lifetime – and save yourself cash in the process.
Investing in Smart Home systems
The smart homes of 2018 are a real look into the future. With the popularisation of devices such as the Amazon Echo or Google Home, we are looking at totally voice controlled home systems that have never been easier to use. Smart homes are now capable of automating all things domestic, from controlling the heating and lights to individual rooms to turning on cookers, boiling kettles and opening windows. Automated energy control is the future of home energy efficiency. Admittedly the startup costs can be a little hefty, but its a thoroughly worthwhile investment in the long term. And what’s more, the reduced energy consumption is unbelievably good for the planet, so really it’s a win win. So there you go, 5 tips to help your bank account while also living a sustainable, globally conscious lifestyle in 2018 – give them a try and see how much you can save today.