New Year climate resolutions
A new year is a chance to make plans for the coming year, and some resolutions. Why not use it to make a difference to the way you live as well as the world you live in?
Here are five ideas for New Year’s resolutions to take some practical action to tackle climate change:
1. Walk or ride instead. A popular New Year’s resolution is to get fit, so why not leave the car at home and walk or hop on your bike instead? You’ll give your health – and the climate – a boost. Transport accounts for 16% of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions, and nearly half of this comes from passenger vehicles.
If it’s too far to walk or ride, consider public transport. Using public transport is a great way to reduce your impact on the environment. For example, in Sydney, just one commuter switching from road to rail for a trip from Castle Hill to the CBD would avoid more than three tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions in a year.
2. Increase your home’s energy efficiency. This will cut emissions and your energy bills at the same time. Did you know that heating and cooling make up about 40% of the average household’s energy use? LivingGreener.gov.au has lots of ideas on how to be more energy efficient, as well as a guide on how to reduce your energy bills.
3. Support renewable energy. Solar energy is increasingly popular in households and businesses in Australia. More than 858,000 houses across Australia have installed solar photovoltaic (PV) panels and 600,000 have installed solar hot water. Consider solar energy in your home in 2013. For further information on how to reduce your emissions and save money visit ClimateWorks or learn more about renewable electricity generation in Australia.
4. Get to work in your community. Another popular New Year’s resolution is to spend more time with family, friends and the wider community. A great way of meeting new friends and becoming active in the community is to join a local environmental group. Find out what’s in your area and get involved. Groups include Landcare, Climate Action groups and community gardens.
5. Be informed. Keep up-to-date on the latest climate change science and opportunities. Take a look at some of our recent reports or learn more about the science from other reputable sources such as CSIRO or The Australian Academy of Science. Tell your friends as well.
There are hundreds of actions to choose from, and everything we do plays a small part in the bigger picture. What will you do in 2013?
Happy New Year from the Climate Commission.
- 19 June 2013 - Gold Coast Community Forum
- 5 December 2012 - Adelaide community forum