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Below you’ll find tips for each of the One Planet Living principles, which will enable you to take a joined-up approach to living more sustainably. We’ve also shared what we think are the top four things you can do to have the biggest impact.
Stay on the ground: One long-haul flight can amount to half a UK person’s yearly carbon footprint - so opt for more local holidays and travel by train where you can.
Follow the plant-based trend: cutting down on meat and dairy will slash your environmental impact – from carbon emissions to water consumption and deforestation.
Use your voice: Write to your local MP and ask what they’re doing about climate change, or tweet businesses that aren’t meeting your expectations.
Consume less and better:
Research shows that buying more stuff doesn’t make us happy. The planet will thank you for buying less, and investing in better quality products.
The tips below use links to UK-specific resources, but the ideas themselves can be used across countries. Feel free to use them and add your own links.
Health and happiness
The best way to live a happy, healthy life is to stay active, eat healthily, enjoy nature and be social.
Equity and local economy
Support your local economy by buying from independent retailers, opt for Fairtrade products where possible and check which companies are members of the Ethical Trading Initiative.
Choose banks that invest sustainably and ethically and divest your pension.
Culture and community
Get involved with your local community, meet new people and make it a better place to be by volunteering or joining a local group.
Be a tourist in your own area – from parks to museums there will be plenty to enjoy.
Land and nature
Even the smallest gardens can be havens for wildlife if you grow pollinator plants. Check out our top ten tips for helping nature in your backyard.
Avoid fertilisers or pesticides that harm wildlife (and people) – Pesticide Action Network UK has lots of information about the issues and ideas for alternatives.
Install a water butt in your garden and harvest rainwater for watering plants.
Be water conscious at home – here are some tips for making savings, as well as some handy gadgets.
Local and sustainable food
Make the most of British produce and get locally grown veg delivered. If that’s not an option, try and shop seasonally in supermarkets using Good Food’s seasonality table (remember to take your own produce bags!).
Reduce food waste by planning meals ahead of time and only buying what you need. Love Food, Hate Waste has great advice.
Travel and transport
One in four car trips in the UK are under a mile. Why not swap to walking or cycling – you’ll save money and feel better for it.
Car-sharing is a great way to cut the carbon footprint of your commute – plus the average Liftshare member saves £1,000 a year.
Materials and products
Buy less stuff – turn to charity shops for clothes, share items like tools with your neighbours and swap books and films with your friends and family.
Buy better when you need to – opt for products that are sustainable, high-quality and that can be repaired.
Avoid using things that can’t be recycled easily - invest in reusable items like a water bottle, lunch box, coffee cup, cutlery and produce bags for fruit and veg. Steer clear of overly packaged items. Here are 101 more tips!
Repair things that break and recycle as much as you can – from food waste and packaging and old clothes and shoes to batteries.
Zero carbon energy
Swap to a green energy supplier if available, buy energy-efficient appliances and be energy-savvy – it’s not just about turning lights off!
If you have the money, think about installing solar panels or insulating your house.
Share your own tips with us on social media using #OnePlanetLiving. You can also download these ideas in PDF format below.
Use the Global Footprint Network's calculator to understand your ecological footprint.
Globally, we are living as if we had several planets. Our guide shares the One Planet Living actions you can start taking today, as well as the top four things you can do to have the biggest impactDownload PDF