Making Your Home More Green in 2020

Several years ago and nobody had quite caught onto the phenomenon. Now, climate change is completely real – and everyone is attempting to take responsibility for their own impact on the world.

Home-occupiers certainly don’t fall outside of this category and there are umpteen ways in which you can make your home greener if you put your mind to it. Let’s not forget that this doesn’t just benefit the environment, but it should also have a healthy impact on your back pocket as well. Bearing this in mind, let’s now take a look at some of the easiest ways to make your home green in 2020.

Plan your renovations accordingly

If the media are to be believed, we’re in the era of renovations. In other words, homeowners are preferring to stay hold of their home and improve or remodel it, rather than move somewhere else.

However, there are good and bad renovations when it comes to staying green. We’re not talking yet about doing the right amount of planning and if you will consider storing your belongings, but other practical issues.

For the purposes of an example, let’s look into the notion of open plan living and being aware that this is going to have significant heating ramifications. This is something that a lot of people forget, and they find that their radiators are working overtime in a bid to heat their new space.

Always dry line your clothes

Sometimes, the best new technology isn’t actually that beneficial for the environment. This is certainly the case when it comes to drying your clothes.

For example, while great strides have been made with washing machines and energy efficiency, the same can’t be said for dryers. They can use five times more electricity, and little else needs to be said on the matter.

Instead, line-dry your clothes, and the benefits are there for all to see.

Make the most of the rain

Next, it’s onto the garden. This is something that is often not thought of when it comes to sustainability, but particularly if you are based in a country where it rains frequently you can make a difference. Rainwater collection tanks might not be overly fashionable, but they can collect enough water over time which can allow you to maintain your garden without tapping into the mains water supply.

A lot of the modern options allow you to hook the tank up to your guttering system as well, meaning that it becomes all-too easy to collect any water that accumulates around your property’s roof.

Use your kitchen intelligently

How many times have you left the fridge door open as you venture across the room to grab another ingredient? Or, how about leaving the oven door open for similar reasons?

Put simply, this is resulting in a lot of lost energy. It might be small at the time, but it does build up and it can result in your home becoming a lot less green than it really should be.

Electrical Waste Collection Strategies in the UK

When disposing of small electrical items from the home, most householders only have the option of visiting their local recycling facility to drop them off. However, in order to meet recycling targets, local authorities in the UK are now considering kerbside (or curbside) collections of small domestic appliances. This is expected to help prevent small electrical items being placed into the general waste/refuse containers from households.

electrical-waste-uk

This waste stream has become a priority as figures show that the average amount of WEEE (waste electrical and electronic equipment) recycled per person is only 1.3kg. The original WEEE directive targeted 4kg per person, as a recycling rate, so there is a considerable shortfall. It is important that householders find it easy to recycle their items in order to increase the rates.

Initial trials have taken place to assess the viability of these kerbside collections and the following conclusions were made:

  • On collections, small electrical items were often damaged, so the reuse of items was less likely.
  • Levels of recycling were encouraging at 140 grams per household.
  • The monetary value of the separated materials of the small items showed that a positive net value could be achieved.

Whilst the potential reuse of small electrical items was reduced it was a positive that local authorities could generate revenues from the collections. Quarterly or bi-annual collection frequencies would ensure volumes of equipment on the collections were maximised. Due to the success of the trials, the UK is likely to see more and more local authorities adopt some form of collection schedule for small electrical waste items.

An old refrigerator uses almost four times the electricity of a new one

Larger electrical items such as washing machines and fridge freezers pose a different collection issue. Some local authorities offer a collection service for bulky electrical items, however due to their size, weight and manpower requirements there is often a charge. As with smaller electrical items, you can deliver these to the local recycling facility, but you may not be able to fit these into your own vehicle. It is best to check with the local recycling facility on the options available and possibly even if they allow large, commercial sized vehicles onto site.

The collection of small electrical items from householders will ultimately increase the amount of electrical waste being recycled in the UK. It will also further promote the recycling of such items instead of placing them into general waste containers. Going forward it is hoped that more local authorities will adopt a collection schedule even if only bi-annually from their local householders.