How can you live a more sustainable life in 2021? Let our eco-friendly tips inspire you to make small yet meaningful changes this year.
New year, new you, right? The start of a new year offers a good opportunity to reflect on how you live and the choices you make. Do you pop the dryer on daily, use a lot of unnecessary plastic packaging, or eat tons of meat? In 2021, sustainability is no longer just a buzzword, it’s a way of living.
Here at The Star HQ, we try our best to adapt eco-friendly ways of living into our daily rituals, from how we choose to travel to what we decide to eat. Sustainability is such a huge part of our business that we were in fact recognised as a Global Leader in the Casino and Gaming category for the Dow Jones Sustainability Index in 2019.
Amanda Visser, Group Head of Sustainability at The Star, tells us her approach is always not to waste. Her advice on how to go green in 2021 is “to make meaningful change you can achieve” and “make it measurable so you can feel good about it”.
Here are 10 eco-friendly tips for how to go green and live a more sustainable life in 2021.
1. Say no to takeaway coffee cups
Are you an avid coffee drinker who consumes a takeaway cup a day, therefore contributing to the 1 billion coffee cups thrown away in Australia each year? Swap the plastic takeaway cups for your own Keep Cup and make a pact with yourself to BYO your cup every time you order your morning coffee.
2. Recycle soft plastics
Did you know all Woolworths stores across Australia have a soft plastics recycling bin for you to bring in soft plastics that can’t be recycled at home? This is one easy step you can incorporate into your home life and will help keep plastic bags and packaging out of landfill.
Did you know: 7.5 million+ plastic straws per year have been diverted from landfill through the launch of The Star’s Single-Use Plastic Reduction Commitment.
3. Choose meat-free dishes
Choose a day a week to go without meat (at the very least) and try a different plant-based recipe each week. Check out Deliciously Ella’s plant-based cookbooks or Whole by Natural Harry. When purchasing meat, Amanda recommends buying direct from the deli or the butcher as there’s less packaging than supermarket-bought meat. And when choosing seafood, always choose an option that is sustainably sourced.
Watch now: Check out our video featuring Rocky Point Aquaculture in Moreton Bay, Queensland, a former prawn farm that’s doing some pretty special things with aquaculture and sustainability.
4. Donate to eco-friendly causes
There are so many amazing eco initiatives out there, so find one that pulls on your heart strings and put your money to a good cause. Our favourite? The Currumbin Wildlife Hospital Foundation on the Gold Coast; an organisation we’re a proud partner of which supports and funds the vital work of the Currumbin Wildlife Hospital. Following last year’s horrific bushfire season, the Currumbin Wildlife Hospital saw a 20 per cent increase in admissions, making the hospital one of the busiest wildlife hospitals in the world.
5. Rethink your method of travel
Do you really need to drive to the shops, or can you walk? Is it possible to bike ride to work one day a week or get public transport to dinner with friends? If you can reduce your carbon emissions by making simple sustainable lifestyle changes – and keep fit at the same time – then it’s a no brainer, right?
6. Clean up your local neighbourhood
“Take three for the sea,” says Amanda. “Just a few bags of plastic collected while visiting your beach or park makes a difference if everyone does it.”
7. Use BYO reusable containers
If you’re a lover of take-out food, then ensure each time you order takeaway you BYO your own reusable container. And, if you see polystyrene at your local takeaway, says Amanda, then say no and ask for paper.
8. Use a compost bin
If you’ve never composted before it can be quite daunting, but rest assured, it’s not! You can compost your organic waste and an added bonus is that it will feed your garden next season, too. If you think you can’t because you live in an apartment, think again. The Bokashi bin is awesome for sustainable apartment living.
9. Do quick fixes at home
“Fix those dripping taps at home and buy only LED lights,” recommends Amanda. “Check your local council sustainability services as they may offer rebates for plumbers, for solar, and for installing LED lights.”
10. Grow your own herbs
Windowsills are the perfect place to grow your own herbs, and you’ll save tons of money at the supermarket (not to mention all that plastic they get wrapped in).