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Greener choices when out and about

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 when you're out and about.


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A person walking down a city street

Greener travel choices

Cycle and walk more and make fewer journeys by car
This will help reduce pollution and congestion and can improve your physical and mental health.


Drive your car efficiently
Driving with good anticipation and smooth acceleration and braking saves fuel and cuts emissions. Correctly inflated tyres, avoiding carrying unnecessary weight and removing carriers and racks when not needed increases these benefits.


Join, or set up, a car share scheme
Putting drivers and passengers together to share car journeys can relieve congestion, provide a more sociable commute, and reduce pollution.


When parked or waiting in traffic for long periods turn off your engine
It will keep our air cleaner and save you money and fuel.


Choose a lower emission vehicle
Next time you’re replacing a vehicle, look for the lowest emission options that meet your needs. Find out more about the benefits of owning an electric vehicle at 

5 spades and forks on the grass

In the outdoors

Bag and bin dog mess
Dog fouling can spoil and contaminate the environment and be a hazard to human health.


Take litter away with you
Recycle where possible.


Follow the Countryside Code
By following the code everyone can respect, protect and enjoy the outdoors.


Join a beach clean or litter pick
Removing rubbish improves places for people and wildlife. Why not join a local litter group, start a new one or pick up litter on your own?


Take part in citizen science surveys
Help record wildlife by sharing what you’ve seen. Information on when and where you spotted a particular species can be valuable data. Find surveys or upload your observations of wild nature to iSpot or iRecord.


‘Check, clean and dry’ clothing and equipment when you leave the water
Help stop the spread of invasive plants and animals in our waters by following the three simple steps.


Support local green spaces
Establish or join a local group maintaining a community garden, park, allotment or wildlife area. Urban green spaces can improve air quality, reduce soil erosion and benefit your health and well-being. Some projects may be able to apply for a grant from the Heritage Fund.

Secondhand jeans

When shopping

Take reusable bags
So you don’t need to buy additional or single-use bags.


Shop in charity shops and donate unwanted items
Not only is it cheaper and reduces waste, but you are also supporting good causes at the same time.


Buy a reusable coffee cup or water bottle
Switching to a reusable cup or bottle is an easy way to cut waste and can save you money.


Use bars of soap, shampoo and conditioner
To reduce the number of plastic bottles needed.


Buy loose produce to reduce the amount of packaging material
Where possible, buy produce loose rather than pre-packaged and take your own bags to shops and markets.


Where possible, seek out locally sourced food that is in season
Transporting food long distances can require lots of energy.


Try to refill cleaning and dry food products
Many shops and market stalls are reintroducing options to take your own bottles, jars and tubs to refill products.


Consider switching to reusable sanitary products
Using a reusable menstrual cup will last for years and save you money. Even switching to non-plastic applicator tampons can help to reduce waste.


Buy sustainably sourced fish
Make more environmentally responsible choices when buying seafood.


Think twice before buying wildlife souvenirs abroad
Products offered for sale to tourists, including wooden ornaments, jewellery, exotic foods and medicines, could be made from endangered plant or animal species and might be illegal to bring home.

Someone carefully holding a chestnut

For you

Take breaks outdoors
Spending time outdoors in a green space, like a park or garden, can reduce stress, fatigue, anxiety and depression.


Carry a water bottle and use refill stations
Using refill stations will save you money, keep you hydrated and help to prevent plastic pollution at the source.


Exercise outside
Outdoor exercise provides a mental health boost beyond that of indoor gyms.


Invest in reusable straws and cutlery
Carrying utensils with you will reduce your use of unnecessary single-use plastic


Get involved in environmental volunteering
Through volunteering, you can learn new skills, boost your mental and physical health while improving the environment.

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 at home 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.