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Why choosing less makes your life both greener and easier

We know reducing, reusing and recycling, avoiding fast fashion and saying no to single-use plastics can reduce our carbon footprint. In every area of life, consuming less makes a difference in the fight against climate change.

Less obvious is that as well as helping the environment, championing sustainability can also simplify our lives. By finding the one thing you actually need – the investment purchase, or the right subscription – you can avoid buying the stuff you don’t. Why burn through endless plastic straws when you could invest in a set of metal ones? Why buy box after box of clingwrap when you could buy eco-friendly beeswax wraps once?

Taking a quality-over-quantity approach to the way we eat, dress and organise our lives saves time, money – and the planet. It’s a no-brainer. So to get you started, here are a few key ways to keep it simple and sustainable.

The one veggie box delivery

Our diet affects more than just our waistline. Alongside cutting back on meat consumption, eating local, seasonal produce can be one of the best things we can do for the planet. That’s because the less food has to travel, the smaller the transport element of its carbon footprint.

One super simple way to eat local is to start picking up a veggie box from your local farmers’ market, or arrange a weekly veggie box delivery online. For about $30-40, you can get a week’s worth of fruit, veg and free-range eggs – all grown in your area. Veggie boxes also have the added benefit of being free from the plastic packaging ubiquitous at supermarkets.

As well as what they do for the environment, veggie boxes have a way of simplifying the rest of our lives. With a box on the go, you’ll save on trips to the supermarket (plus the petrol it takes to get there). You won’t be as tempted to reach for food delivery. You’ll eat healthier – and the veggies might taste better, too.

The phone plan that is good for the planet

An environmentally conscious phone plan? It exists. Felix mobile is the only telco in Australia that is 100% powered by renewable electricity and is government-certified as carbon neutral. For every month you subscribe, felix also plants one tree. It’s the mobile phone plan with a bigger plan.

It also takes the headache out of picking a phone plan. Felix offers only one plan, which is just $35 a month and comes with unlimited data at speeds up to 20Mbps. To really keep things simple, there’s no lock-in contract. You can switch, subscribe and forget, and know your choice is having a positive impact.

The one capsule wardrobe

Fashion is one of the world’s biggest industrial polluters. By avoiding fast fashion – clothes manufactured cheaply and sold at rock bottom prices – you can build a more sustainable wardrobe. The key is to stop buying (and eventually chucking) cheap, poorly made clothes every season. Instead, shop selectively and choose pieces you’ll keep forever.

The best approach is to start building a capsule wardrobe, which is essentially a small collection of clothes that you’ll always want to wear. The idea is that you pare your wardrobe down to the pieces you love and always gravitate to. Once you’ve done that, you can see what you’re missing – for instance, you might have a good pair of jeans for winter, but no jumpers. From here, you start the slow process of buying the items you need, with a focus on high quality items. Banish impulse buys and take your time with purchases. Work out what flatters you and go for classic style, not fads.

How to build a second hand capsule wardrobe

Once your capsule is complete, you won’t have to keep buying new clothes every time the weather changes. Getting dressed every morning will be easier, because you’ll love everything in your wardrobe. Your personal style will improve. It’s dressing, simplified.

The one toilet paper delivery

The ultimate sustainable bathroom investment would be a bidet, but eco-friendly toilet paper delivery does a pretty good job too. That’s because environmentally conscious toilet paper uses recycled paper and avoids plastic packaging, two things that most supermarket brands don’t do.

To make life a whole lot simpler, you can even sign up for a subscription to eco-friendly rolls online and get the right amount delivered to your door every month. You’ll never have to make an emergency dash to the supermarket again, and you’ll be insured against pandemic-induced, nationwide loo roll shortages. It’s the only one toilet paper purchase you’ll ever have to make and the planet will thank you for it.

The one takeaway container

Single-use plastics aren’t just bad for the planet; in 2021 they’re also unnecessary. By finding quality containers to replace disposable ones, you can build a kitchen that lasts a lifetime.

Instead of bringing your lunch to work in cheap plastic food containers, invest in a glass or stainless steel alternative. Rather than adding to landfill with a daily coffee cup, get one cup that’ll go the distance. And so that you don’t have to keep buying water when you’re out of the house, keep a reusable bottle in your bag. It’s the simple, sustainable and clutter-free approach.

Source: The Guardian