“I could dream to wide extremes, I could do or die.
I could yawn and be withdrawn and watch them gallop by.”

What A Waste by Ian Dury & The Blockheads

The best and quickest way to cut carbon is to not do anything.

Yep, I’m trying to get a reaction out of you. Let me explain.

I’m not saying do nothing, we can’t afford for you to do that, but to change over to doing less: less flying, less buying, less burning, less building.

Most of all, less throwing away.

No getting rid of stuff just because of fashion, or boredom, or wear and tear, or because there’s a newer version or because the thing you’ve got just needs a simple repair.

Be honest, just how much better do you need your smartphone camera to be?

We have a single-use world, and it’s great that so many of us recycle so much, but recycling’s kind of missing the point, it ought to be our last resort. Recycling’s what you do with waste. We ought never to get to the point where recycling’s the only thing left to do.

We need a circular economy, where waste and pollution are designed out right from the start. It ought to be easy to donate, reuse, repair and remake all of our stuff.

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation have a smart diagram:

  • Waste and pollution are failures and not inevitable. Never mind making things to be cheap or disposable or fast to market, we should make things that are minimum impact on the planet.
  • Make things that are used over and over and over again. We used to do that. How many of the objects in our museums are centuries old, but could still be used for their original purpose now? Things people made not hundreds, but thousands of years ago. We should be able to keep most things in circulation, so they don’t end up in landfill.
  • Take a leaf from nature’s book, there’s nothing in nature that when its life is over doesn’t become useful to some other living thing. Nothing should ever end up in a bin.

You can help by

We’re looking for ways of getting a circular economy going right here.

  • Using an old bicycle we’ve pressed people’s garden apples to make juice.
  • We’ve swapped party clothes for Christmas.
  • We’re building a collection of books for a library.

We’re looking for you to join in with the things we organise, and to start circular economy actions yourself – we’ll help, we’d love to.