October 2015 saw the UK government introduce a 5p charge on all plastic carrier bags from large retailers throughout the country in a bid to drastically reduce the number of non-biodegradable bags that end up in landfill sites each year.
Reusable bags can be purchased from most supermarkets, as well as 4imprint, which has produced a new infographic showing how people in Britain can save themselves up to £3,000 per year by making small, environmentally-friendly changes to their lives.
Here’s the firm’s top five tips to save yourself some money, while protecting the planet at the same time.
- Take your own bags
Figures show that approximately eight million plastic bags were given out in the UK in 2013, which equates to 130 bags per person and 57,000 tonnes of non-biodegradable waste per year.
But by taking along your own bags when you head to the shops, you can make sure you’re doing your bit for the environment, as well as save yourself around £65 per year.
Supermarkets usually replace bags for life free of charge if they break, so it’s well worth investing in one for the long-term benefits to your bank balance as well as the planet.
- Try car sharing
If you usually drive yourself to work with no extra passengers in your car, you are definitely contributing to increasing the UK’s carbon footprint, with 22 per cent of all excess emissions currently coming from road vehicles.
Yet by car sharing or taking public transport, the average commuter can save themselves £5.60 per day alongside reducing the country’s potentially harmful carbon dioxide emissions.
- Buy a reusable mug
According to statistics from the Mintel Coffee UK 2008 Report, 70 million cups of coffee are drunk each day in Britain, and 4imprint’s figures show that this results in 2.5 billion paper coffee cups ending up in landfill sites every year.
Invest in a reusable mug and make your own coffee in the mornings to benefit the environment and save yourself an average of £2.45 each day.
- Get creative with your lunches
For a lunch that’s friendly to both your purse and the environment, purchase a cooler bag that can be reused every day and fill it with your favourite snacks or last night’s leftovers for a tasty, cheap meal.
By taking your own packed lunch, you can also prevent excess packaging waste from ending up in landfill, as you can simply use your cooler bag to keep items fresh.
- Take a drink to the gym
Did you know that the sports bottle you drink out of at the gym could contain harmful BPAs?
By taking your own reusable, BPA-free water bottle to your workouts, you can save yourself £1 a day, as well as prevent unnecessary damage to the environment.
The little things in life add up, so by making each of these changes, you could save yourself as much as £3,000 over the course of a year.