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Love your home, protect your world: doing what you can

Be part of a positive change. Be part of net zero.

Not everyone can invest in big changes around the house, or on the road. But it’s still possible to be part of reaching net zero (and even save some money) just by following these simple no-cost tips.

What is net zero?

We’re facing a climate emergency in the UK, but by making small changes at home, we can turn things around and protect our world for future generations.

We need to reach a place where the amount of carbon added to the atmosphere – from heating our homes and driving our cars – is no more than the amount taken away.

The balance is known as net zero. In the UK, we’ve even changed the law to make sure we get to this balanced state by 2050.

In the kitchen

  • 01

    Use a washing up bowl

    Using a bowl to wash up rather than a running tap can save you money on your energy and water bills if you have a water meter. In fact, you only need to run a typical tap for 95 seconds to fill up a washing up bowl.

  • 02

    Wash at 30 degrees

    Make sure that dishwashers and washing machines are full before you use them, and ensure you always use the most efficient water and energy settings. Wash at 30 degrees or use the ECO setting if your machine has one.

  • 03

    Careful with your cuppa

    When making a cup of tea or coffee, only fill the kettle with the amount of water you need. You’ll not only save water, but could also cut around £6 a year off your energy bill.

In the bathroom

  • 01

    Snub the tub

    If everybody in a family of four replaces one bath a week with a five-minute shower, up to £10 a year could be saved on gas bills and up to £10 on water bills (if you have a water meter).

  • 02

    Take shorter showers

    Spending one minute less in the shower each day will save up to £8 a year off your energy bills, per person. With a water meter this could save a further £11 off annual water and sewerage bills.

  • 03

    Turn off the tap

    A running tap wastes more than five litres of water a minute, so turn off the tap while brushing your teeth, shaving, or washing your face. Use cold water if you don’t need hot.

In the living room

  • 01

    Switch off standby

    You could save around £35 a year by remembering to turn your appliances off standby mode. Almost all electrical and electronic appliances can be turned off at the plug without interfering with their settings.

  • 02

    Turn off the lights

    Even if you leave the room just for a few seconds, switching off the lights will save more energy than they use to switch on again. Always turning off your lights when you’re not using them could save you up to £15 a year on your energy bill.

  • 03

    Turn down your thermostat

    If you have a full set of heating controls, turning down your room thermostat by just one degree can save around £60 a year and reduce your carbon footprint by 310kg.

On the move

  • 01

    Get active

    Active travel is all about getting you moving from A to B in ways that don’t use fossil fuels. Wheeling, walking, scooting or cycling – active travel not only improves your health and wellbeing, but helps reduce your carbon footprint and saves you money.

  • 02

    Use your car less

    Choosing to walk or cycle just one mile to the shop and back once a week rather than drive will see fuel savings of £16 and 27kg in CO2 annually. This is the equivalent of charging your smart phone 3,443 times.

  • 03

    Take public transport

    Did you know that replacing car journeys with public transport can reduce your CO2 emissions by 42% if using the bus and 73% if using the train? It can also help you be more active by walking between your stop and destination.

One more tip...

Get a smart meter

Smart meters can help you understand how much energy you use at home and they’re usually free from your energy supplier. They show you how much gas and electricity you’re using and how much it costs.

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More ways to protect your world

Read our blogs for more ways to save energy - and money - at home and on the move, at the same time as reducing your carbon emissions.

Blog

Simple ways to save water at home

Blog

Take control of your heating at home

Blog

Active travel: the benefits of walking and cycling

Ready to take it to the next level? Congratulations!

If you’re already doing all of these actions and want to do more, we have plenty more ideas for you to try that can help us reach net zero together.

Take it to the next level

Last updated: 12 May 2021