Sustainable September

September is here and there are some rather important events and days in the pipeline that focus on sustainability and helping the planet. Grangers has selected some of the more notable goings-on, offering a run-down of this month’s sustainable events and how you can get involved.

Second-hand September

Throughout the month of September, we are all encouraged to donate, reuse and upcycle our old clothes rather than throwing them away or buying brand-new outfits. But if you’re in desperate need of a particular item of clothing, turn to second-hand shopping; opt for hitting the charity shops or online second-hand sellers rather than buying into fast fashion. The main goal of this sustainable swap is to help reduce the amount of clothes waste and combat the negative impact of fast fashion on the environment. Squeezing nine extra months of wear from an item of clothing reduces carbon, water and waste footprints by 20-30% per garment.

Great British Beach Clean – 15th-24th Sept

Beaches across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will undergo a spring clean with help from hundreds of dedicated volunteers around the country, all mucking in and tidying up. Organised by the Marine Conservation Society (MCS), the aim is to pick up litter that has washed ashore, making our beaches safer and cleaner for wildlife and beach-goers alike. The litter collected from the clean-up is then assessed to give us a good idea about what kind of rubbish is floating about in the ocean and its detrimental impact on marine life. This data is then used by MCS to make a positive change to our oceans. Data collected from previous Great British Beach Cleans has helped to introduce the plastic shopping bag charge, bans on microplastics in personal care and taxes on single-use plastic. Go to the MCS website to find out more about the cause and how to get involved: Marine Conservation Society.

SDG Summit – 18th-19th Sept

Taking place in New York, the United Nations is meeting to discuss the progress of their 2030 Agenda, a global plan to generate economic growth and social prosperity through environmentally sustainable avenues. The plan consists of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the summit will discuss current environmental issues whilst aiming to revive hope and confidence in the steps being taken to reach a sustainable future. To find out more, visit the SDG website: SDG Summit.

World Car Free Day – 22nd Sept

On Friday 22nd September, humanity is encouraged to ditch our cars and imagine a world without them. The average car emits a whopping 4.6 metric tons of CO₂ a year, contributing to the atmosphere’s greenhouse effect. They also add to noise and water pollution. We know cars and vehicles can be extremely useful and get you from A to B with ease, however, Living Streets is challenging you to spend a day without your car, van or motorbike and opt for walking, cycling or rollerblading to your destination. If you have somewhere to be on the 22nd that is too far to walk, we suggest taking public transport to limit the amount of vehicle-emitted CO₂ produced.

Forest Week – 24th-30th Sept

Forest Week, run by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), aims to advocate sustainable forestry through campaigning and education. During this week (and for the rest of the year), people are encouraged to choose FSC-certified products over non-certified alternatives to support forests all over the world. Healthy forests are critical to the well-being of the planet, taking up more than 31% of land. They are also one of the most biodiverse ecosystems, home to over 80% of all terrestrial species of animals, plants and insects. The earth’s forests are also pivotal in our fight against climate change, helping to soak up vast amounts of CO₂ whilst releasing valuable oxygen into the atmosphere. In short, their prosperity and protection are essential to our survival. Visit the FSC website to discover more about our planet’s forests and what you can do to help: FSC Forest Week.

Other Notable Events

World Clean Up Day (16th Sept), International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer (16th Sept), Zero Emissions Day (21st Sept) and World Rivers Day (23rd Sept).

Make this September sustainable by getting involved with all the exciting events and activities taking place near you that are helping to make our planet a better place! We’d love to see how you take part #ecograngers.