We are currently facing multiple environmental challenges, from climate change to air pollution to loss of biodiversity. Tackling them will require us all to live and work differently and community groups can make a difference, whether or not the environment is a primary focus of your work. The resources below provide advice on simple ways you can make a positive contribution to a healthy environment in your community.
How we travel makes a big difference to the environment – both to global carbon emissions and to local levels of pollution. Community groups can play an important role in promoting sustainable transport for people travelling to and from their activities, which may also lead to people changing their habits for other journeys.
Sustrans has tips on different aspects of active travel, from how to walk with young children to bike maintenance https://www.sustrans.org.uk/our-blog/get-active
Bikeability provides cycle training for every level https://bikeability.org.uk/
Living Streets has resources to help you make your neighbourhood better for walking, including conducting a street review and campaigning for new pedestrian crossings: https://www.livingstreets.org.uk
Waste and recycling
The Carbon Trust’s Waste and recycling guide sets out the key principles of the ‘Waste Hierarchy’ https://www.wcva.org.uk/media/5995026/carbon_trust_-_waste_and_recycling_guide.pdf
Avoid creating waste through your events and activities with these tips from Eden Project Communities https://www.edenprojectcommunities.com/zero-waste-event-tips
Food is a great way to bring people together but food waste has a significant impact on the environment. Tips and advice from Love Food Hate Waste can help you to plan ahead and ensure that every last mouthful is enjoyed https://www.lovefoodhatewaste.com/what-to-do
Green Doctor energy efficiency tips:
How to keep your home warm & save money: this easy to use guide is full of tips to increase energy efficiency, which benefits both the environment and your budget. They are aimed at households but will also be useful to any community groups that use or manage a building as part of their activities and for sharing with your volunteers and local community.
You can also find videos showing you how to put these tips into action on Groundwork’s YouTube channel.
Sustainable procurement is about making sure that the way your community group uses its funds has as positive an impact as possible on society and the environment. The government has put together some tools to help you think about sustainable procurement: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/sustainable-procurement-tools