Monday, June 20, 2022

How To Do Your Bit For The Environment As A Parent



When you have a baby, it can be an extremely exciting time. There is a new person in the world for you to take care of who you can watch grow and impact how they see the world. However, everyone knows that having a baby and starting a family can also be nerve-wracking!


In recent years, there has been an emphasis on over-population in the media as well as the amount of pollution that one person can cause – which can make new parents feel even more stressed out. It goes without saying that a new baby will need a lot of things, such as cots, toys, strollers, and clothes. All of which you may feel pressured to buy by baby groups and your relatives. 


Luckily, there are a few ways you can do your bit for the planet as a new parent without depriving your new baby of the experiences that they deserve. In this article, 5 ways to be a green parent will be explored.


1. Reduce Leather

It may seem odd to associate leather with babies, but a surprising number of baby-related products are made from leather. With the most obvious being the baby bag or the diaper bag.

Leather may look stylish and classy (as well as being easy to clean) but think about where it comes from. Cows produce a lot of methane, adding to the CO2 problem and global warming. 

There are some options for parents who want the look of leather without the ethical and environmental issues. There is faux leather, which is made from a blend of fabrics, or other options like this vegan leather diaper backpack. Vegan leather is usually made from plant sources, so you can showcase your love for the look without any impact on a living animal. 


2. Use Washable Nappies

Disposable nappies are a huge problem in relation to waste. They are used once and are then thrown away, where they can take hundreds of years to break down. Even when they do, they have an array of plastics inside them that can harm the environment.


So, opt for washable or reusable nappies. Talk to people who use them and you will be presently surprised. These types of nappies are much better at containing the dreaded poo-splosions and the general smell of a used nappy (even wet disposable ones smell while on a baby). Cleaning them is much less of a hassle then you might think, just stick them in a wash bag and do a wash every few days. Washable bottom and face wipes also just work better than disposable ones – using one wipe rather than 5 or 6 also makes nappy changes much quicker!


3. Breastfeed (if possible)

Breastfeeding is a hot-button topic, as many mothers may be unable to breastfeed or may simply not want to. But, when possible, aim to breastfeed. This will reduce the amount of plastic that is used in keeping your baby fed. However, storing milk will still use some plastic bottles and you will need to carefully monitor your own health. In this instance it is much better to use plastic for the sake of your physical and mental wellbeing. There might be a more appropriate place for you to help the environment.  

 

4. Buy Second Hand

Consider buying second-hand baby clothes, in the first few months of their life, they will grow so quickly that it would cost a fortune to dress them in brand new clothes all the time!A lot of clothes are also bought which a child never got a chance to wear because they grew too quickly so you may get second-hand clothes which have never been worn. 

The internet is full of marketplaces like eBay where you can get second-hand strollers, Moses’ baskets, blankets, toys, and even cots. Just be sure that the purchases you make are safe for use before using them with your baby. The only things you shouldn’t buy second-hand are car seats and mattresses for safety reasons. 


Using second-hand goods will reduce your carbon footprint and will also cost less to buy, so it's a win-win situation all around.


5. Use Public Transport

It's always fun to have a car to drive your baby around in, but this is not a good idea when you are trying to save the planet unless you have an electric car. 

Cars emit a lot of CO2, which will add to the already high level of CO2 in the atmosphere, meaning that it may cost more than fuel costs when you are driving around to get your little one to sleep. So, when possible, aim to use public transport for traveling with your baby. Or better yet, walk!





 Thanks to Oleg Sergeichik @kpebedko_o for making this photo available freely on Unsplash 

https://unsplash.com/photos/MrsbKzRzflo

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