26 things you can do to help climate change
1. Become an environmental volunteer
There are many environmental volunteer groups in South Lanarkshire and our Countryside and Greenspace Service helps them run events, carry out practical site improvement and run training events.
2. Turn off lights and electrical appliances when not needed
When you leave a room, turning off lights and electrical appliances when you're not using them can save energy, lower your bills, and reduce your carbon footprint. Go to Home Energy Scotland for advice and tips.
3. Insulate your home to ensure energy is not wasted
There are government funds available to help with this and you could reduce your heating bill by up to £350 per year. Go to Home Energy Scotland for details and see if you are eligible.
4. Reduce your thermostat and make sure you understand your heating controls
The right heating controls will let you keep your home at a comfortable temperature without wasting fuel or heat. See the advice on thermostats and heating controls at Energy Savings Trust.
5. Walk or cycle for short journeys where possible
Increasing levels of active travel can bring huge benefits to our communities, health and environment. Read more on active travel.
6. Plan your meals to avoid food waste
An average family of four can save £60 a month simply by reducing the amount of food they throw away. For simple food hacks and tips, go to Love Food Hate Waste.
7. Think about repairing items rather than buying new
Save money and minimise waste by repairing. More information can be found at Zero Waste Scotland.
8. Donate and/or buy from charity shops
Donate to charity when you have items you no longer have a use for, or even better consider buying from charity shops to give clothes, furniture, books, music and household items a second life. See Zero Waste Scotland for more information on donating.
9. Avoid palm oil
The palm oil industry is responsible for destroying forests, threatening orangutans with extinction, and accelerating climate change. Read more on the challenges we face with palm oil.
10. Reduce, reuse, recycle
Household waste can be reduced, reused, recycled, recovered, and disposed of in different ways. See what you can recycle and how.
11. Don’t engine idle
If you're going to be parked for more than 30 seconds, turn off your engine and restart when you are ready to move on. You're likely to use less fuel, reduce unnecessary emissions, improve air quality and avoid the risk of receiving a fixed penalty. Report traffic pollution and engine idling on our website.
12. Consider using a safety razor instead of disposable razors and disposable heads
It will last a lifetime and 100 blades cost roughly the same as three disposable heads. See how plastic razors affect the environment.
13. Swap to shampoo bars and conditioners
They're greener, cheaper, and much more travel-friendly. In the UK we go through 520 million shampoo bottles every year. Read reasons to ditch your shampoo bottle.
14. Use soap bars instead of liquid soap and shower gel
Soap bars use less water and plastic and therefore have a smaller carbon footprint. Just avoid soap made from palm oil. See Ethical Consumer's product guide on shower gel.
15. Walk, cycle, or scoot the school run
Our school travel plans aim to increase the number of children walking, cycling and scooting to school.
16. Switch to green energy - green tariffs are now often cheaper than standard fixed tariffs
Use the Home Renewables Selector to see which technologies could be suitable for your property (in Scotland only). You can also look at specific technologies to see how much carbon and money you could save by installing them.
17. Get a smart meter or smart controls and apps
Smart meters and heating controls are the latest innovation to help you control your heating and understand your energy use. See Energy Saving Trust's guide to smart meters.
18. Consider ethical banking or lobby your bank if you don’t agree with some of their investments
An ethical bank considers the social and environmental impacts of its investments and loans. For more information, see Money Expert's guide to ethical banking.
19. Consider home composting
Almost a third of household rubbish can be composted. See what you can compost and how.
20. Join or start a growers group
We work in partnership with groups that manage community growing sites giving local residents, groups and schools the opportunity to grow fruit and vegetables. See our food growing projects information.
21. Grow food at home
You can still grow food at home even if you don't have any outdoor space. Read growing food at home for hints and tips.
22. Ditch the plane for the train
Flying is one of the most polluting ways to travel. Find out more about the challenges of air travel at Greenpeace.
23. Make memories instead of buying stuff for birthdays and Christmas
Memories last a lifetime - things don't. Read more on collecting memories.
24. Ditch the fast fashion
The fashion industry has had a disastrous impact on the environment. Read how fast fashion is failing the environment.
25. Shop local and in season
Eating seasonally means eating food that's naturally ripe and ready for harvest in your local area at the time, instead of imported foods from different climates around the world. For recipes and to find out what's in season just now, visit Soil Association.
Becoming a Good Food Council is part of our priorities. Read our Good Food Strategy.
26. Cut down on takeaways, especially if there’s loads of single-use packaging
The law on single-use plastics is changing. Find out more at Zero Waste Scotland.
- 26 things the council is doing to help climate change
- 26 things you can do to help climate change