With the rising threat of global warming and a strong focus in the UK, Europe and the rest of the world on environmental protection, it is imperative to know of ways to lower your carbon footprint when you’re travelling. It is always important to remember to renew your EHIC card and book travel insurance when you are travelling abroad, but not many people think about the safety of the environment around them during their trip. With the enhanced focus on eco-friendly travel around the world, we have put together some top ways to lower your carbon footprint whilst travelling.
Before You Go
Before you go on your environmentally friendly trip, you can prepare to go-green by minimising your houses’ footprint. Simple things like turning off all of the lights and electrical appliances, and turning down the thermostat can really help to cut down energy usage. Unplugging electrical appliances also helps as they can still leach power even when they aren’t switched on. These are all important ways to prepare for your eco-friendly trip and getting into the routine of switching off appliances can be something you take with you on your travels.
How To Travel
The way you travel is also important in reducing your footprint. Flying to a destination is the most polluting way to travel, particularly when it comes to short haul flights (defined by the UK Treasury as a flight that undergoes an absolute distance of under 2000 miles). On the other hand, train travel is widely recognised as the least polluting method of transportation. It has been estimated that if domestic flights transferred to rail, carbon emissions would drop by between 118,000 – 362,000 tonnes and nitrogen oxides by 18,000 – 58,000 tonnes. However, it is not always practical to travel this way.
Nevertheless, getting to various parts of the world, Europe in particular if travelling from the UK, and the few extra hours it might take on a train compared to the plane would be worth the reduction of environmental impact. In fact, getting to some places in Europe via train is actually quicker, if you count in the travel to and from the airport and the waiting around time. For example, travelling by Eurostar from London to Avignon, via Paris is just a six hour trip, whereas a flight would take longer due to the waiting around and travel to and from the airport.
If you do have to travel by air, it’s important to take the most direct route possible. Although direct routes might be a little bit more expensive, the more landing and taking off an airplane does, the more fuel it burns, so paying that little bit extra can actually save a lot of fuel. Also try and choose an energy-efficient plane.
Where To Stay
When you choose your location, it is important to look at accommodation that is eco-friendly if you want to reduce your carbon footprint. Many travel companies now offer holidays which support sustainable development, do not impact negatively on the environment and provide support to local communities. A wide number of hotels and other types of accommodation are beginning to use environmentally friendly energy sources such as solar energy or hydroelectric power to power their hotels, as well as having a strong focus on aspects such as recycling and reusing. Staying somewhere that uses renewable energy, no matter how small, is always a good way to help reduce your carbon footprint on the world while travelling. If you know people in the country you’re going to, you can reduce your carbon footprint even more by scrapping the hotel and staying with them instead.
During Your Stay
During your stay there are a variety of things you can do to reduce your environmental impact. Things like conserving water by keeping showers short or turning off the water when brushing your teeth are important. In addition to this, turning off the TV, lights, heating or air-conditioning and reusing sheets and towels instead of having them washed every day are all easy ways to reduce your carbon footprint during your stay. Choosing environmentally friendly transport while you are staying is also a great way to help. Hiring bikes, using buses and trains or simply walking around is far better than driving, and you’re also much more likely to engage in a true cultural experience and discover things that are off the beaten track this way. Respecting the local environment, particularly when trekking or hiking, by staying on marked tracks and not littering are all important ways to reduce your carbon footprint.
When you’re travelling abroad, there are a variety of ways to make sure that you are being eco-friendly and reducing your carbon footprint. Whether you’re choosing alternative travel to airplanes (although this is not always possible), steering clear of domestic flights by using other forms of transportation, using local buses or walking when you’re in the destination, choosing a green hotel, and simply respecting the environment while you’re in the country are all easy ways to make sure that you are travelling in an eco-friendly way.
Extra-Mile Water Conservation Efforts Amidst Shortage
While some states are literally flooding due to heavy rains and run-off, others are struggling to get the moisture they need. States like Arizona and California have faced water emergencies for the last few years; water conserving efforts from citizens help keep them out of trouble.
If your area is experiencing a water shortage, there are a few things you can do to go the extra mile.
Repair and Maintain Appliances
Leaks around the house – think showerheads, toilets, dishwashers, and more – lead to wasted water. Beyond that, the constant flow of water will cause water damage to your floors and walls. Have repairs done as soon as you spot any problems.
Sometimes, a leak won’t be evident until it gets bad. For that reason, make appointments to have your appliances inspected and maintained at least once per year. This will extend the life of each machine as well as nip water loss in the bud.
When your appliances are beyond repair, look into Energy Star rated replacements. They’re designed to use the least amount of water and energy possible, without compromising on effectiveness.
Only Run Dishwasher and Washer When Full
It might be easier to do a load of laundry a day rather than doing it once per week, but you’ll waste a lot more water this way. Save up your piles of clothes until you have enough to fully load the washing machine. You could also invest in a washing machine that senses the volume of water needed according to the volume of clothes.
The same thing goes with the dishwasher. Don’t push start until you’ve filled it to capacity. If you have to wash dishes, don’t run the water while you’re washing. Fill the sink or a small bowl a quarter of the way full and use this to wash your dishes.
Recycle Water in Your Yard
Growing a garden in your backyard is a great way to cut down on energy and water waste from food growers and manufacturers, but it will require a lot more water on your part. Gardens must be watered, and this often leads to waste.
You can reduce this waste by participating in water recycling. Using things like a rain barrel, pebble filtering system, and other tools, you can save thousands of gallons a year and still keep your landscaping and garden beautiful and healthy.
Landscape with Drought-Resistant Plants
Recycling water in your yard is a great way to reduce your usage, but you can do even more by reducing the amount of water required to keep your yard looking great. The best drought-resistant plants are those that are native to the area. In California, for example, succulents grow very well, and varieties of cactus do well in states like Arizona or Texas.
Install Water-Saving Features
The average American household uses between 80 and 100 gallons of water every single day. You obviously can’t cut out things like showering or using the toilet, but you can install a few water-saving tools to make your water use more efficient.
There are low-flow showerheads, toilets, and faucet aerators. You could also use automatic shut-off nozzles, shower timers, and grey water diverters. Any of these water saving devices can easily cut your water usage in half.
Research Laws and Ordinances for Your City
Dry states like California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Nevada must create certain laws to keep the water from running out. These laws are put into practice for the benefit of everyone, but they only work if you abide by the laws.
If you live in a state where drought is common, research your state and city’s laws. They might designate one day per week that you’re allowed to water your lawn or how full you can fill a pool. Many people are not well versed in the laws set by their states, and it would mean a lot to your community if you did your part.
Cyprus is the Forerunner for Ecotourism
When I was looking for a second citizenship, I happened to see One Visa’s offer on Cyprus Citizenship by investment program. I had heard about Cyprus being a beautiful country, but I did not know much else, so I decided to start my own research about this gem of a place.
After I did some research, I discovered that Cyprus is a popular destination for tourists. Unfortunately, heavy tourism and the associated development affected villages here and there, with some communities being slowly abandoned. To avoid this from happening any further, Cyprus went into ecotourism, and today, it is the forerunner in this arena. Let’s look in further detail at ecotourism in Cyprus here.
How was it started?
It all started in 2006 with the launch of the “Cyprus Sustainable Tourism Initiative.” This program has the sole scope of promoting ecotourism developments in the tourism industry. It concentrates on those areas which require conservation and environmental safety. At the same time, it helps develop social, as well as economic statuses in the rural parts of Cyprus. Through this program, the government was able to acknowledge that ecotourism will play an essential role in the future of Cyprus, with the concept gaining momentum among tourists from all over the globe.
How to go about it?
So, now you are interested in going for an ecotourism vacation in Cyprus. How will you go about it? I would immediately say that everyone should visit the quaint Cypriot villages spread throughout the island. These communities have a smaller population, and not many tourists visit. They make for a great relaxing spot. Enjoy seeing the bustle of village life go by where simple pleasures abound. Most hamlets are linked by specific minibus tours which ferry tourists to these havens. These trips will have a regular schedule, aimed at promoting ecotourism further. Such tours will be regulated to ensure that while the villages can benefit and develop, they do not get overpopulated or overcrowded with tourists. Therefore, you can be sure to enjoy the beautiful sceneries that nature has to offer here.
If you are wondering if there are any activities to do here, my answer would be: “Yes, plenty.” You can go for some guided walks across various regions here. Here you will be able to explore the diversified natural beauty and wildlife of the area. Several agritourism activities and services are planned to open shortly. Once launched, you will be able to engage in picking olives, milking goats, and several other such events here.
What can be learned?
Although we are aware that natural resources need to be preserved, we do not always remember it in real life. When we go on tours such as these, we can realize the significance of protecting nature. Also, when more and more people visit these places, the concept of ecotourism will become popular among more people. Awareness about ecotourism is set to grow and spread throughout the world. Subsequently, sustainable tourism will gain popularity around the globe with Cyprus being the forerunner for ecotourism .