You would most likely have to have been living under a rock over the past decade to have missed the new emphasis on environmentally green energy friendly products, services and attitudes. Backed by legislation, much of it originating from the European Union, we have seen initiatives to reduce air, water and land pollution to lower carbon emissions and to change energy use. But how does this affect your world and what does it mean for every day life?
Recycling was once something that only those in certain post codes or ‘hippies’ indulged in but it has now become so mainstream that all towns and cities in the UK have a recycling collection as well as a regular rubbish collection. Recycling can help save energy and reduce the negative effects on the planet of continuously producing new ‘stuff’ and filing up landfills with the things we don’t want any more that won’t biodegrade. What does it mean for you? Well, all you have to do is separate your rubbish out and leave the recyclables for the bin men – it’s one of the easiest and simplest ways in which our habits have become greener.
Monitoring energy consumption has become particularly high profile in the light of the recent recession as people have begun to realise that not only does using less power counteract the negative effect that we have on the environment but it saves money too. There are many ways in which you can monitor – and lower – your energy consumption. Switching to energy saving light bulbs, ensuring your home is properly insulated, turning down the thermostat and making sure that you only have the heating/lights on when you actually need them are all sensible, easy ways to get energy consumption under control.
Green energy sources have also started to make a considerable impact on our world and many have begun to make their way into mainstream usage. It’s now possible to construct your own solar panels or wind turbine to generate some of the energy to power your own home – any that you don’t use you can sell back to the national grid. Tidal and wave power, hydroelectricity, geothermal power and natural gas are all being incorporated more and more into the way that we heat, light and power our homes and offices.
Environmentally friendly technology is another huge area of development that would seem to indicate that our world is indeed going green. As well as renewable energy, innovations such as green building materials and methods, hybrid and electric cars, composting toilets, fabrics that can be manufactured with minimal waste, energy efficient boilers, eco friendly plastics and solar paint are all working together towards making our world a much greener one. With so much investment being poured into this area the momentum is likely to continue building – so if you if you thought that the world was pretty green now then just wait until we’re all driving electric cars and carrying around solar powered smart phones. The future’s bright – and definitely green.