Ideas for Sustainable Living

The way that you live your life will have a big impact on not just your own health, but also that of the environment. Choosing to live sustainably will significantly improve your quality of life as well as help ensure that future generations inherit a world worth living in. Here is a brief look at a few easy ways to live more sustainably.


Be a Conscious Coffee Drinker

If you are one of the many Australians who love coffee, do your part for sustainability by becoming a conscious coffee drinker. Those who regularly get their coffee to go should invest in a reusable mug, because disposable coffee cups comprise a huge amount of garbage each year. When buying coffee for home, choose fair trade organic varieties if you can afford it, as this way your purchase will be supporting sustainable practices. You can even reuse your coffee grounds by incorporating them into your garden compost; this will help enrich the soil as well as minimize the amount of garbage you create.

Become a Beach Comber

For those who are lucky enough to live by the beach, becoming a local beach comber is a great way to live sustainably. Sadly, the world’s waterways have become increasingly polluted in recent years, and according to Tangaroa Blue Foundation at least 276 species of marine life worldwide are negatively affected. Sea birds have been hit particularly hard with thousands dying each year from consuming plastic that they mistake as food. Picking up even a few pieces of garbage every time you go to the beach can make a big difference, as every piece you remove is one less that can cause harm.

Don’t Drink Bottled Water

One of the best things that you can do towards living sustainably is to avoid drinking bottled water. Apart from the fact that tap water has far higher safety standards and is therefore likely better for you, a huge amount of non-renewable resources are used to produce and distribute bottled water. If you don’t trust the quality of tap water, invest in a water filter for your home; and if you like drinking water while you are on the go, pick up a reusable water bottle and fill it before you head out.


Cars are one of the world’s biggest sources of pollution, so every time you choose to walk rather than drive you are doing a great service to the environment. Walking is also a cheap and easy way to get in shape and stay healthy, as well as a far less stressful way to get around.
Reuse and Recycle

A lot of energy and natural resources go into the making of any product, so make sure you are getting as much life as possible out of every item. Don’t throw away anything if it still has some life left in it; and when it is no longer useful, recycle it if you can. If an item still works but you don’t want or need it anymore, consider selling or donating it, with garage sales and online classifieds great ways to find new homes for unwanted items.

Stop Smoking

Apart from being extremely bad for your health, smoking is also bad for the environment, as a staggering amount of cigarette butts litter Australia’s streets and waterways each year. Second hand smoke can harm the health of those around you and even the process of growing tobacco is bad for the environment as it causes deforestation. If you smoke and have been looking for a reason to quit, do it for the sake of living sustainably.

Join a Co-operative

Co-operatives have become increasingly popular in Australia and are a great way to do your part for sustainable living. Food co-operatives are particularly beneficial as they make it cheaper and easier to buy healthy local organic food. Joining a co-operative will also make it easier to meet like-minded people in your area, and getting to know your neighbours is a vital part of community health, safety and sustainability.

Eat Mindfully

One of the most important ways to live sustainably is to be mindful of what you eat. Choose to buy food that doesn’t come in excessive packaging, buy locally grown organic options whenever possible and invest in reusable shopping bags to carry your groceries home. For those who eat meat, try to limit your consumption, because the production of meat takes a heavy toll on the environment and often includes highly unethical practices.

Welcome Wildlife

The spread of urbanisation has left many birds, animals and insects threatened with extinction, so a great way to live sustainably is to make the outdoor areas of your home wildlife friendly. Build a small pond for the local frogs, plant native plants to attract the native birds and even consider investing in a hive to attract the local bees. Apart from helping to sustain the local ecosystem, you will also get to enjoy the benefits of living in a healthier more natural environment.

Educate Yourself

If you want to live more sustainably, you need to educate yourself. Whether you are buying soup, nail polish or baby food, get into the habit of always reading the labels, and if there are ingredients you are unfamiliar with, find out what they are. Get to know your products, the brands that make them and the way that they do so; and choose to support those that follow the most sustainable practices. Find out about natural cleaning products, such as baking soda and vinegar rather than using those with harsh chemicals, and have a go at making your own products such as soap, face wash and toothpaste.