How To Lower Your Carbon Footprint During Your Holidays
Over the past 100 years the world’s atmospheric levels of CO2 have risen by 33% and it’s up to each and every one of us to be more responsible. By making changes in our lives we can help and prevent that number from doubling before the year 2075.
Through smart changes to your daily routine you can already make an impact on how large a carbon footprint you leave behind – yet there are still plenty of other occasions in which you can make a difference, with your next holiday one of the best opportunities to make a significant change.
On a two hour flight aboard a regular sized 200 seater plane the average CO2 emissions are roughly 0.0050 metric tonnes – the same quantity of carbon emissions as an average car will make in an entire year.
Weeks before your trip begins you can already start to offset it through a number of responsible actions that you can pair with your well planned eco-friendly holiday.
Offset Before You Go
Swap your car for a bike on your morning commute
Unless you’re car sharing and driving friends or colleagues to work every morning it’s highly likely that you’re producing more carbon dioxide that you can possibly offset. Leaving your car at home and taking public transport will certainly make a difference, but there’s no better green and eco transport option than hopping onto your bike. If biking to work isn’t realistic for you to continue with throughout the year, doing so for a few weeks up until your holiday will certainly help.
Make your home greener
Decreasing the quantity of C02 your home and lifestyle produces may already be on your agenda as you aim to live a more responsible and green life; however, if you’ve yet to make many of those changes then doing so in the run up to your trip will certainly help bring your carbon production down.
You can aim to create a Zero Waste household by purchasing fewer items with excessive packaging. Incorporating a Zero Kilometre rule to your spending habits can also have a dramatic impact on your carbon footprint too as you source groceries, fruit, and vegetables from local active green schemes.
Composting the little food waste you have can also contribute to your saving efforts and also help your garden
Replace your kennels with a house sitter
Driving your pet dog or cat to leave them at a holiday kennels for the duration of your holiday is one trip you should certainly remove from your pre-trip planning. Kennels can be expensive both financially and environmentally as they’re often maintained with 24/7 lighting and a number of other high carbon contributing elements.
Inviting a house sitter into your home to watch over your pets will replace the carbon footprint of taking your animals to the kennel, plus it can also prevent any stress your dog or cat may face by staying in the unfamiliar surroundings of a holiday kennel.
Take a carbon-friendly holiday
Choosing to book a vacation with a smaller carbon footprint is one of the most direct and sensible decisions you can make for taking a greener holiday. By travelling shorter distances that don’t require flying you’ll cut out the largest CO2 contributor.
With a staycation you can travel by a shared carbon option such as a coach or train, spending your time out in the countryside or in a smaller town near your home that you’ve never seen before.
Pay a carbon tax on your flight
There’s still much discussion being had within the international community as to whether a Carbon Tax for flights is a process that should be ratified into law. In the meantime a small number of responsible airline carriers has begun to offer the option of adding a Carbon Offset Fee into the booking process that customers can select and purchase for their flight.
Be sure to get in contact with your airline carrier via their customer services channels to see if they have the option available before you purchase your the tickets.
Reduce your luggage
If the eco holiday of your dreams isn’t immediately available in your home country and flying abroad is an unavoidable requirement, bare in mind that every extra kilo on board the plane will increase the quantity of cubic metres of carbon dioxide produced.
By packing a lighter and more eco-friendly suitcase or small carry-on backpack you’ll contribute to helping reduce that grand total weight and – potentially – emissions too.
Unplug all of your electronics
You may already be switching off all your electronics and removing them from the socket when they’re not in use, but if that’s not the case it’s a small task that can certainly add up together with each of these other tips.
Don’t forget to unplug all of your major electronic devices in your home before you take your trip, thereby cutting out the unnecessary power usage whilst you’re not at home.
Step off the bus
When you do finally reach your chosen holiday destination you can further reduce your impact on the environment thereby applying the same responsible decisions you would make at home. This can also include avoiding the use of cars and also public transport.
By choosing to walk around or bike through your chosen city you can not only behave greener, but see a different aspect of local life that you might otherwise miss if you chose a taxi or bus.
Book eco-friendly accommodation
Eco hotels are increasing in number every year and finding one to book at both home and abroad is easier than ever. Most will already aspire to help you leave the lowest carbon footprint possible by choosing to supply you with locally sourced products such as soap and towels.
Should you not be able to find a hotel that’s already eco-aware then by avoiding room services like cleaning and replaced towels by leaving your ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign on the door will be a small contributor that’s better than no contribution at all.
What’s your number one green travel tip?
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