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Greener choices at home

We want to encourage any action that connects people with, protects and enhances the natural environment. Below are a range of example actions that you could take in and around your home.

Domestic kitchen

In the kitchen

Recycling reduces the need for raw materials and helps keep our air, water and land clean.

Only buy the food you need
By planning your meals for the week, and only buying the fresh ingredients required, you can reduce the amount of food that is wasted and save money.

Compost your food or opt for a food waste bin if your council offers it
Separating food waste reduces the amount of waste going to landfill and it can be used to generate energy.


Avoid pouring fats and oils down the sink
Collect them in a container and put them in the bin to prevent drains from becoming blocked.


Use a washing up bowl for dishes or only use a dishwasher when it’s full
This will help reduce your water consumption and save you money.


Choose non-toxic cleaning products, paints and furnishings
Products containing Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) can reduce the air quality in your home.


Pick efficient appliances
When you need to replace an appliance, Energy-efficiency labels will indicate which models use the least resources.

A bathroom

In the bathroom

Only flush the 3Ps down the loo – pee, paper and poo
Wet wipes, nappies and medical waste are frequently responsible for sewer blockages. Blockages can lead to sewer flooding and release pollution into the environment.

Turn off the tap when you brush your teeth
A running tap can waste 6 litres of water per minute.

Take a shower and use a low-flow or aerated shower head
A bath typically holds around 80 litres of water, while a short shower can use as little as a third of that amount.


Check your toilet for leaks
A single leaky loo can waste up to 400 litres of water per day, the equivalent to five full bathtubs.

A bee on blossom

In the garden

Use a water butt to collect water for gardening or reuse water from your home
Water butts are a brilliant way to catch large amounts of free rainwater.


Feed the birds
Using a bird feeder to provide high-energy foods can help birds of all sizes survive.


Create a home for wildlife
Install bird or bat boxes, build bug hotels and create log piles to provide shelter and places to hibernate for insects and animals.


Build a pond
A pond is one of the best features for attracting wildlife to a garden including hedgehogs, birds, frogs, dragonflies and other animals that need fresh drinking water. If a pond is not practical, opt for a simple birdbath or pebble fountain.


Grow plants for pollinators
Flowers, shrubs and trees provide nectar and pollen as food for bees, butterflies and other pollinating insects throughout the year.


Don’t let pond plants escape into the wild
Invasive aquatic plants can damage our ponds, waterways and the environment. Be Plant Wise and dispose of unwanted plants and pond material through careful composting.

Plant trees
A single tree can be home to hundreds of species of insect, fungi, moss, mammals, and plants. Trees can also help clean the air we breathe and filter the water we drink.


Let your lawn grow
Longer grass encourages different plant species to grow and creates feeding opportunities for birds and insects.


Think carefully about whether to use pesticides
Especially where pollinators are active or where plants are in flower. Only use pesticides if necessary.

A washing line with many colourful clothes

Energy saving

If you can, hang out clothes to dry rather than using a tumble dryer
It will save electricity and help your clothes last longer.

Try to put a full load in the washing machine each time
A full load will use less water and energy than two half loads. Select a low temperature programme when possible.

Only light a fire if you need it to keep warm
Use dry wood or fuels approved by your stove’s manufacturer on an efficient and well-maintained appliance to reduce pollution.

Boil only what you need
Fill the kettle with the amount of water required. Any extra and you’re wasting time, money, and energy.

Install, or improve, insulation and draft proof your home
40% of heat is lost through doors, windows and floors. 25% through the roof. Sealing unwanted gaps and fitting insulation in the loft will help cut heating bills and make your house warmer.

Turn down your thermostat
If you turn down your thermostat by just one degree it will cut your heating bills straight away, and you may not feel any difference.

Talk to your water company about receiving free water-saving devices
Most companies will provide simple products, such as tap aerators or shower timers, for free.

Switch to a green energy provider
Changing energy provider can help reduce your carbon footprint.

If you've been inspired by the actions above, why not make a green action pledge?


Find more examples of green actions you can take when you're out and about and in your workplace.  

This suggested actions are not government advice. Some actions contain links to websites owned and operated by third parties. The links are provided solely as a convenience and such links should not be taken to imply any type of association, sponsorship, endorsement, monitoring, approval of, or responsibility for, the linked website or its content and services.