10 ways to live more sustainably
Today’s travellers are more eco-conscious and socially responsible than ever. They actively seek not only a deeper connection with our planet and its people, but they also want to glean local knowledge, interact authentically with different cultures, leave as light a footprint as possible, and give back in a meaningful and sustainable way. All of which are key elements to a luxury journey with &Beyond.
Way ahead of its time, our shared-value approach of caring for the land, wildlife and people (our 3Cs impact model) through the delivery of extraordinary guest experiences was actually created 20 years before the now-mainstream term ‘shared value’ was coined in 2011. With nearly three decades of measurable, sustainable and long-lasting &Beyond Impact under our belt, how do we continue taking this approach ‘beyond’? How do we exceed your travel expectations and continually raise the bar for conservation, community development and sustainability? What lies beyond just ‘doing good’?
What lies beyond just doing good?
Doing good, on any level, is meaningful. Every donation, big and small, and every awareness campaign, local or global, really does make a difference. However, we believe in taking it further:
- We encourage our guests to delve deeper and really get immersed in a destination
- We enable them to get involved with hands-on conservation programmes and cultural activities that will expose them to some of the planet’s environmental issues, wildlife crises and cultural needs and differences
- Ultimately, we hope to inspire our guests to take action in their everyday lives and to join us on our journey to leave our world a better place than we found it
Image © Howard Cleland.
Take a pledge to save our oceans
One such example of going ‘beyond’ and taking action is our Oceans Without Borders Pledge. A joint initiative with our social development partner, Africa Foundation, Oceans Without Borders was recently launched to further expand our focus on land and wildlife conservation to include the much-needed protection of our oceans. Thanks to the success of our 3Cs impact model, which influences 9 million acres of wildlife land, we are now able to influence an additional 3 000 km of African coastline through our marine activities at &Beyond Phinda Private Game Reserve and the three islands within our growing portfolio.
Through this initiative, we are inviting like-minded individuals to take our Oceans Without Borders Pledge as a personal vow of intent to take action in their everyday lives and to find unique ways, big or small, to live more sustainably. We need to adopt a global, shared responsibility for our future, as well as those of our children, our oceans and indeed our planet. The time is now.
10 easy ways to honour your pledge
Not sure how to get started? Here are a few tips on how to live more sustainably in your everyday life. By adopting a few simple daily habits and making them routine, we can all help make a meaningful and lasting difference to our planet. Remember, there is no Plan(et) B.
1. Eliminate single-use plastic
Slow to degrade, plastic pollution is having a catastrophic effect on our land, oceans, wildlife, and indeed our own health too. Say no to that plastic carrier bag and bring your own reusable grocery bag, say no to disposable plastic straws and carry your own glass/bamboo/metal straw, drink from a reusable water bottle instead of buying bottled water, get your takeaway coffee in a refillable travel mug, buy fresh bread instead of bagged bread, etc.
2. Save water
Make every day World Water Day and opt for shorter showers, place a bucket in the shower to collect water while it heats up to temperature, install a water-saving showerhead and/or a shower timer, use cooking/bath/rain water in your garden, turn off the tap while you brush your teeth, wash your hair on alternate days, etc.
3. Incorporate some meat-free meals into your diet
There’s no denying that the livestock industry is one of the biggest culprits when it comes to climate change and habitat degradation. Global meat production has tripled over the past four decades and this large-scale need has serious implications for the future of our fragile planet. It is estimated that 18% of the overall global greenhouse gas emissions are caused by animal agriculture, which is more than the combined exhaust from all transportation on earth. Not only that, but experts also predict that these harmful emissions will increase 80% by 2050.
In addition to this excessive air pollution, the livestock also require an enormous amount of water and land (resulting in deforestation). Did you know that 2 500 gallons of water are needed to produce just one pound of beef?
To help offset these issues, many people are committing to the meat-free Monday revolution and opting for a vegetarian meal once a week. We’re not suggesting you should eliminate meat altogether, however, it is important to remain cognisant of the problem. Make an effort to incorporate some meat-free meals into your diet every now and then to help delay climate change, lower your carbon footprint and improve your cardiovascular health at the same time.
4. Reduce household energy use
Switch off any lights and appliances that you aren’t using, invest in energy-efficient appliances and lighting options, hang wet clothes to dry naturally, bundle up instead of jacking up the heat, open the windows instead of putting the air-con on full, opt for the cold water setting on your washing machine, etc.
Incorporate a recycling bin into your household to recycle glass, plastic, metal and paper. Reduce, refuse, reuse and recycle wherever possible!
6. Plant a veggie garden
Reduce your carbon footprint by eating locally-sourced foods and, better yet, plant seeds to cultivate your own sustainable veggie garden and enjoy fresh, organic home-grown fruit, herbs and vegetables from your own thriving garden.
7. Compost organic waste
Reduce your food and garden waste by adopting a self-contained and easy-to-use organic compost system. The Bokashi Food Waste Recycling Kit is an effective and user-friendly way to get started. Leftover food, egg shells, coffee grind, tea bags, spoiled milk, fruit/vegetable off-cuts, grass cuttings and plant prunings are used to harvest a healthy, nutrient-rich soil for your household plants and garden, instead of being heaped onto the ever-growing landfills. And if you don’t have a garden, you could always donate the fresh compost to local community gardens.
8. Opt for green transportation & innovative tech solutions
Mix up your morning commute and join a carpool, ride a bike, take public transport or even walk to work if you can. If not, you can still make a difference by taking the stairs instead of the elevator.
Individuals and businesses are also encouraged to harness creative tech solutions, wherever possible, to help offset the carbon emissions associated with unnecessary flights or lengthy commutes to the office. Businesses today are using videoconferencing, online collaboration tools and mobile communications to bring people together virtually. Think smart, work smarter.
9. Save paper
Think twice before hitting that print button (or better yet, get rid of your home printer and force yourself to go digital), stop junkmail by opting for electronic statements/advertising instead of paper-wasting snail mail, collect reusable scrap paper at your printer, send electronic wedding invitations, use e-tickets for flights and movies, etc.
10. Drink tap water
Here is some food (water) for thought … did you know that the world produces approximately 50 billion bottles of water every year? It takes 17 million barrels of oil to produce this bottled water and of the 50 billion bottles used, an estimated 80% end up in landfills.