I am really pleased to introduce another guest blogger, Mhairi Gordon-Preston. Mhairi has recently started to support Sea-Changers through 'Your Sea-Change Life', her coaching organisation. She helps people who love the sea to find balance, happiness & a sense of purpose, using inspiration from the oceans and practical actions from her unique Coaching. Mhairi is also a passionate diver with a real concern and love of the ocean and she will be supporting Sea-Changers by helping to raise money for UK seas. To find out more about Mhairi visit: http://yourseachangelife.com/. In her first blog Mhairi looks at 10 daily actions to create healthy seas.
Your daily actions have an impact on the oceans. With a few tweaks to your habits, you could be helping marine life on a daily basis, while saving money, benefiting your health, and having fun!
- Plastic in the sea can be eaten by marine animals who mistake it for food. So:
· Use alternatives to plastic when possible.
· Dispose of plastics carefully (never litter).
· Re-use and recycle them as much as possible.
· Anything that could trap an animal should be cut-up before binning/recycling.
- Litter often ends-up in rivers before getting washed into the sea where it’s harmful to sea life.
· Dispose of your rubbish responsibly – recycle as much as possible, use litter bins when you’re out and about, or bring your rubbish home with you.
- The only non-natural item that should be flushed down the loo is toilet paper.
· Everything else should be put in a rubbish bin.
· Ladies – we can wrap our monthly items in used plastic wrap or unwanted plastic packaging, & put them in the bathroom bin or dedicated disposal units.
- Most shampoos, shower gels, scrubs, etc, contain chemicals that are harmful to ocean life.
· There are many places selling alternatives that work really well without all the harmful stuff (they’re easily found online).
· The main chemicals to avoid are Sodium Lauryl Sulphate & anything ending in paraben (take a look at product ingredient lists).
· Mainstream face & body scrubs often contain plastic bits. Instead, buy one from a responsible company, or use table salt or oat meal.
- Keeping the climate stable & healthy will save coral reefs, help all sea life, and benefit us humans!
· Cycle, walk, & use public transport whenever possible.
· Start or join a car-pool, schemes are listed online.
· Swap to local food when possible – avoid anything that’s been air-freighted (e.g. exotic fruit & veg, or regular ones out of season).
· Have a few meat-free days each week, or go veggie or vegan.
· Rent items, buy second-hand, borrow from someone else, or look for what you need on Freecycle.
· Get a train or boat rather than a short-haul flight.
- Some sea food that’s on sale is very destructive to ocean habitats.
· Ask your retailer what they sell that has the Marine Stewardship Council sticker on it (it’s dark blue, with a white fish logo).
· Get a pocket-sized guide to buying fish that you can easily take with you when you go shopping, from http://www.fishonline.org/.
· Take part in the easy online actions they share, with a few mouse clicks.
· Repeat with other marine conservation charities.
- Going diving, whale-watching, sailing, to an aquarium, or similar?
· See Sea-Changer Businesses for a list of Sea-Changers businesses and use their services. You’ll know they’re ocean-friendly!
· Ask other businesses what they do to be sea-life friendly (e.g. they shouldn’t cause stress to sea life, should be sensitive to breeding times, shouldn’t keep marine mammals in captivity, should be very careful where they anchor, and so on).
· Let them know about Sea-Changers - maybe they’ll want to become a Sea-Changer Business.
- Carrier bags often become litter and then get into the oceans where turtles mistake them for jellyfish and eat them
· It’s easy to buy cotton shopping bags that you can keep in your handbag, daily rucksack, briefcase.
· If your groceries are delivered, get the driver to take back the bags for recycling, or put them in your home recycling.
- When arranging day-trips, weekends away, or holidays:
· See Sea-Changer Businesses - you’ll know they’re ocean-friendly!
· Or ask your resort/tour operator/guest house about their practices.
· Book through companies that have an environmental policy which fits your sea-related ethics.
For more Sea-Changing ideas visit: http://www.sea-changers.org.uk/how-to-help