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In the Kitchen: Impacting Climate Change

By: Kelly Fenn - Updated: 16 Oct 2012 | comments*Discuss
Kitchen Climate Change Environment Green

Next time you go to cook your evening meal, load the dishwasher or start the washing machine, think green before you start - you might be unwittingly , and certainly unnecessarily, being a bigger burden on the environment than you need be.

Bearing in the mind the environmental implications of what we do - even when we complete small, seemingly trivial tasks - in our homes makes sense for your pocket and our surroundings, and probably nowhere more prominently than in our busy kitchens.

Help is at hand in the form of our handy guide to going green in the kitchen. We're taking you through some everyday tasks and jobs in the kitchen, and putting an eco-friendly spin on things, all easy to implement and keep up.

Cooking a Meal

Take a green stance when choosing your menus - be it breakfast, snack or dinner party for eight. Where you can, choose organically grown, locally produced items, ideally from a local food producer or market, or from the supermarket. Supermarkets stock a large amount of organic, free range and eco-friendly items, and the more demand you create by buying them, the more they will stock.

Even better, flex your green fingers, and get growing your own produce in the garden. Carrots, potatoes and tomatoes take up relatively little space to grow. And for flat dwellers - grow your own herbs in a window box.

Washing Up

Dishwashers are a convenient and easy to use addition to many modern kitchens - but they can be an inefficient items in terms of water usage if you have an older model. You should always ensure you've got a full load when you switch it on, and when it comes to replacing yours, invest in an A rated energy efficient model, which use 40% less water than their older counterparts. If you're a more traditional 'washing-up liquid and rubber gloves' washer up, reuse the water by using it to water the lawn.

Fridges & Freezers

A fridge and freezer is one of the least energy efficient items in your kitchen, so it's important to pay it special attention. Here are a few tips to keep it running in the greenest way possible:

  • Defrost your freezer regularly
  • Always ensure you shut the doors properly
  • Check your settings - it might be too high
  • Don't overload your fridge, or place items against the back
  • When you come to replace your fridge or freezer, invest in an A rated Energy Efficient Recommended model -most new models are A rated as standard

Doing The Washing

Washing is a regular and unavoidable chore we all have to endure. Make sure your washing habits are as green as possible. Only wash with a full load, and turn down the temperature that you wash at. Modern detergents are designed to be just as effective at 30 degrees as they are at a higher temperature. And use a fresh day and the wind to dry your clothes rather than a tumble dryer.

There are also a number of eco-friendly washing powders and liquids -including Ecover - that are much better for the environment than regular detergents as they are made from natural, sustainable plant and mineral ingredients.

Recycling In The Kitchen

Bring your kitchen into the 21st century and a more environmentally conscious age by installing your own recycling centre in the kitchen. There are a range of kitchen bins on the market which include a separate section for recycled goods, and nearly all areas in the UK are served by a local doorstep recycling service. Start doing your bit and recycling glass, food waste, cardboard packaging, plastic bottles and more.

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