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Living a greener, more environmentally-friendly lifestyle is something most of us would like to achieve - but how do you go about it? This guide, written by consumer advice expert Liz Barclay, provides you with the low down on how you can make changes and choices for a more positive impact on the world around you.
It provides you with practical advice on all aspects of everyday life, from looking at how you can reduce energy use in your household, through to ensuring your shopping choices are in line with ethical principles, to travelling, investing and even holidaying in a `greener' way - all of which makes a lasting difference to protecting the environment.
Practical and light-hearted it provides comprehensive, down-to-earth advice so you can limit your impact on the planet.
Foreword. Introduction. How to Use This Book. How This Book is Organised. Part I: Our Environment, Our Responsibility. Part II: Living A Green Lifestyle. Part III: shopping the Green Way. Part IV: Travelling Without doing Any More Damage to the Planet. Part V: Thinking Green At Work. Part VI: The Part of Tens. Icons Used in This Book. Where to To from Here. Part I: Our Environment, Our Responsibility. Chapter 1: Understanding The Problems We're Storing up for the Future. Creating a Green Society. Measuring Our Own Environmental Footprints. Making time for environmental priorities. Becoming Carbon Neutral. Taking one small step for mankind, one giant step for the environment. Making it a habit. Slowing down can be time well spent. Doing your bit for the environment. Understanding The impact of individual choices on the environment. Setting up community projects that work. Adopting positive habits. Starting at home. Conserving is the key. Re using rather than rejecting. Getting green in the garden. Shopping ethically. Being environmentally sound at work. Travelling smart. Banking better. Reaping the rewards of a sustainable lifestyle. Saving the environment saving money. Living a Green Lifstyle keeps the doctor away. Leaving a legacy for future generations. Sidebar: Green living checklist. Chapter 2: Our Environment: Then, Now and in the Future. The Need for Green Living. Damaging the Earth on a global scale. Warming up the globe. Drying up the Lakes. Salting up the rivers. Damaging age old ecosystems. Endangering the birds and the Bees. Emitting toxic waste. Growing urban population. Moving into the Cities. Increasing the number of cars. Reducing the urban water supply. Taxing energy supplies. Facing health problems. Spreading virulent viruses. Gasping for air. Turning the water bad. Poisoning our food. Balancing Desire and Denial for the Long Term Benefits. Living the Dream. Using First World solutions in Third World contexts (or Capitalistic Solutions in Developing World Contexts). Understanding that the Earth is a finite resource. The Earth can sustain our need but not our greed. Zoning in on at risk areas. Changing Climate The Truth. Ignoring global warming At your peril. Seeing the global warming warning signs. What You Can't See Can Harm You. Toxic waste in our water supplies. All we need is the air that we breathe. Preventive Medicine for the Earth. Thinking globally, acting locally. Taking short term action for long term gain. Sidebar: The Past: The Industrial Age Brings Prosperity and Pollution. Sidebar: The damaging impact of using fossil fuels. Sidebar: The changing nature of agriculture. Sidebar: The Global view Kyoto and all that. Sidebar: Getting involved Being empowered by lobbying and protesting. Part II: Living a Green Lifestyle. Chapter 3: Living in a Green Home. Deciding Where to Live. Finding the Greenest Location. Overcoming the distance factor. Catering for all the Family. Making the Most of a Green Location. Choosing Your Space big isn't always beautiful. SIDEBAR: Building Your Green Dream Home. Adapting your Existing Home to be More Green. Tapping into the Sun's Rays. Producing your Own energy from wind. Heating the house with Ground Heat. Ditching the Energy guzzling boiler. Replacing old Appliances with Energy Efficient Ones. Doing without Air conditioning Units. Conserving the Earth's Resources at Home. Reducing Fuel Use. Insulating. Cutting Down on Water Consumption. Buying Green energy. Selling your own energy Back to the National Grid. Sidebar: Green Homes Checklist. Sidebar: Energy Efficiency checklist. Sidebar: The Big Issue Is Water and Increasing Drought Problems. Sidebar: Getting the money for energy producing projects. Chapter 4: Acting 'Green' Every Day. Cooking in a Green Kitchen. Using Water Sparingly. Using the Basin or the Dishwasher? Storing, preparing and cleaning up more efficiently. Disposing of kitchen waste sorting it all out. Bottling out the damage done by bottled water. Splashing about in your Green Bathroom. Keeping water usage to a minimum. Reducing the flush Factor. Showering versus Bathing. Going Green with your toiletries and cosmetics . In the Living Room. Finding entertainment system solutions . Turning down the Thermostat wooly jumpers rule! Getting out of the 'Standby' Habit. In the Laundry. Using Eco friendly products. Keeping the Temperature Down. Drying Naturally. Deciding Between Terries or Disposables. Cleaning the Green Way. Cleaning Materials without Chemicals. Using elbow grease and natural products. Arguing the case against Air Fresheners. Bringing Up Evironmentally Friendly Children. Remembering Pets can be Green Too. Planning Your Green Funeral. SIDEBAR: Replacing those aerosols and chemical products with Green versions. Chapter 5 : Getting Green in the Garden. Designing and Environmentally Friendly Outside Space. Decking and Patios. Heating Outside. Cooking Outside. Watering Your Backyard. Keeping the Grass in Shape. Swimming Pool Ethics. Balancing the Garden Eco system. Encouraging Wildlife Protecting the birds and the Bees. Growing Your Own Fruit and Veggies. Designing Your Own Veggie Patch. Regenerating your Refuse. Composting your waste away. Setting up a worm farm. Planting Native Shrubs and Plants. Maintaining a Sustainable Garden. Getting the whole Family involved. Sidebar: Tips for Maintaining the Lawn and Garden. SIDEBAR: Collecting water from rain and the rest of the house for the garden. Chapter 6: Waste Not, Want Not Minimising Your Rubbish. Wasting Your Life Away. Getting rid of the Uk's Waste. Landfilling versus Incinerating. Cutting Down Waste. Reducing. Reusing. Repairing. Recycling. Regifting. Discussing the impact of recycling: the pros and cons. Cardboard. Glass. Plastics. Paint. Understanding WEEE the rules on recycling and disposing of Electronic Goods. Mounting Up The Mobile Phone Mountain. Getting More Mileage out of Your Wardrobe. Learning Not to Throw it Away. Joining the eBay Phenomenon. Holding a Garage Sale. Charity Begins At Home. Sidebar: A recycling success story: The life and times of a recycled tyre. Sidebar: The big debate about plastic bag tax. Sidebar: Packaging Less is not always more. Sidebar: Schemes for getting rid of Computers etc. Sidebar: Why Old is the New 'New'. Part III: Sustainable Shopping. Chapter 7: Living to Eat or Eating to Live. Reading the Packet You are What You Eat. Tracking Your Food Back to it's Source. Eating Local Produce. Eating What's in Season. Cutting down the Air miles. Fishing for Sustainable Varieties. Buying Organic. Understanding why organic is more sustainable. Getting the gist of genetically modified food. Vegetarianism is More Sustainable Myth or Reality? Explaining the vegetarian's diet. Discussing the meateater's diet. Choosing where to Buy Your food. Thinking outside the supermarket. Getting the most out of Farmer's Markets. Getting to know the local farmer. Picking Your Own. Understanding the Fair Trade Arguments. Growing Your Own. Eating Out. Chapter 8: Wearing It Well. Filling up the Landfills sites. Using up oil the link between clothes and oil. Following the Thread of Where Your Clothes Are Made. Manufacturing overseas. Using Low Paid Labour. Buying cheap equals buying more. Using sustainable materials. Searching for ethical retailers. Reusing and Recycling. Old is Cool: The Attraction of Vintage Clothes. What the cool people are wearing. Where to find those clothing classics. Sidebar: DIY clothing tips. Chapter 9 : Homeware Shopping from the Eco Mall. Shopping for Energy Efficiency. In the kitchen. In the livingroom. In the laundry. In the Bathroom. Decorating in Green. Using sustainable furniture materials that work. Painting the house naturally. Buying eco friendly presents. Sidebar: What You Can Buy in the Eco Mall . Chapter 10: Counting On Ethical Banking. Saving through Ethical Accounts. Investing in Ethical Financial Products. Interesting Religious Minorities. Lending Ethically. Finding Green Financial Advice. Giving Ethically. Borrowing for Green projects. Mortgages. Converting your home to 'Green' energy. Renovating old properties to 'Green' properties. Part IV : Thinking Green Outside the Home. Chapter 11 : Ideas for a Greener Work Environment. Going Paperless. It can be done! The perfect paperless IT system f. Creating The Energy Efficient Office. What makes an energy efficient office ? Can you convince your company to change? Telecommuting Cuts More than just the Petrol costs. Reducing transport trips. Reducing your impact at the office. SIDEBAR: Running your own Green Business. CHAPTER 12: Going Green at School. Kids can be Green Too. Walking to School. Sharing the School Run. Changing the School's approach from within. Becoming A School Governor. Raising Awareness of Green Issues. Getting advice on energy Saving. Initiating Green Projects. Digging the pupils vegetable plot. Launching a Green' Prize. Organise a trip to a Landfill site. Planting Trees. Introducing Green School Lunches. Part V: Travelling Without Doing Any More Damage to the Planet. Chapter 13 : Choosing Your Transport Wisely. The Benefits of Reducing Our Reliance on Cars. Making the air cleaner. Benefiting from healthy alternatives. Alleviating the energy crisis. The Sustainable Transport Options. Going to work the stress free way. These legs were made for walking (and pedalling). Training yourself to use public transport. Introducing yourself to car sharing. Getting on your bike. Workplace travel plans are making a big difference. Shopping till you drop from home. Getting it delivered. Shopping on line explained. Cutting Down the Air Miles. Chapter 14 : The Smart Car Evolution. The Green Car Myth or Reality? Fuelling interest in alternatives. Getting a wiff of natural gas. Becoming electric. Mixing it up (your fuel that is). Owning a smart car The pros and cons. Choosing Between Bio Diesel and Bio Ethanol. The Future is So Bright You'll Have to Wear Shades. Finding out what's on the car market. Looking into the crystal ball. Paying the Tolls. Avoiding the congestion charges. Pay as you drive Schemes in the pipeline. Taxing times for the Gas guzzlers. Sidebar: Sustainable Transport Checklist. Chapter 15: Committing To Acts of Eco Tourism. Discovering the Eco Tourism Phenomenon. Not just for backpackers. So you want to be an eco tourist? Eco tourism hotspots. Choosing a Sustainable Holiday. Defining a sustainable holiday. Looking for the best sustainable holiday. Cutting down those non essential flights. Flying Carbon Neutral. Sidebar: Developing Your Own Sustainable Holiday Itinerary. Part VI: The Part of Tens. Chapter 16: Ten Great Sustainable Actions You Can Take Today. Chapter 17: Ten Informative and Fun Websites. Chapter 18: Ten Examples of Environmental Innovation. Chapter 19: Ten Things to Teach Your Kids About Sustainable Living. Chapter 20: Ten Green Projects to get the whole Community Involved in. Index.
Liz Barclay is a writer and journalist who presents BBC Radio 4 s consumer affairs programme You and Yours. Michael Grosvenor is an urban planning professional with a special interest in sustainable transport.