Sustainability goals audit

In 2020 I set some sustainability goals that I wanted to practice in 2020. Well it’s roughly a year later so let’s audit those goals and see how I am faring (probably not well!) This is also a chance for me o adjust course and set new goals if needed.

Food consumption

  1. Continue eating a vegetarian diet. -> I am mostly abiding by this rule unless I am traveling and want to sample local cuisine.
  2. Not buy products that come in single use plastic. Instead buy glass or aluminium. -> I am not doing well by this rule at all! I need to make a conscious effort to abide by this.
  3. Cut down soda consumption to “special events”. -> This is another goal that I sacrificed as work got more stressful, but I am trying to return to this as a part of my health living.
  4. Only buy vegan alternatives to milk and cheese products. -> Doing great by this! Unless I am baking, in which case I prefer whole milk.
  5. When buying eggs, look for the following labels, “Animal Welfare Approved”, “Certified Humane Raised and Handled”, “Global Animal Partnership (GAP) Certified” (Levels 3 and above), “No Antibiotics”, “Certified Organic”. -> Doing great by this!
  6. When eating food made at a restaurant (takeaway, delivery or in person), check to see if the eggs they are using follow the principles laid out above. -> I won’t lie, I haven’t even done this ONCE!
  7. Cut food delivery down to once every 2 months. -> This has been great when I am alone, it’s hard to live by this when I have folks visiting.

Buying habits

  1. No more purchases via Amazon. Since I don’t have a Prime account, I shouldn’t be tempted by 2 day delivery anyway. -> I signed up for a Prime account again
  2. Keep restricting my online orders to 1 a month. Now that stores are opening up, I should be able to find most things I need in physical stores instead of having to find them online. -> Since I moved houses and was traveling for a long while this was hard to do.
  3. Continue using reusable totes and produce bags when grocery shopping. While stores aren’t letting you bring in your own totes you can keep those items in your bag and decant your purchases into your own bags outside premises as long as your bags don’t touch their grocery stores. I don’t have a car otherwise I would transfer my groceries directly from the cart to my car. -> I now have a car so I am more likely to grocery shop in person. However, I won’t lie there was a large part of the year where I was ordering my groceries online.

Commute

Since I am working from home for the rest of this year, my commute is significantly reduced. However, I want to use this time to create better commute habits:

  1. Walk places that are within 1 hour walking distance. -> Since I have gotten a car, I have started ignoring this rule. Need to go back to it!
  2. Learn how to ride a bike over the coming months and use that as my main mode of transport to to work come 2021. -> I was traveling so I am not a pro bike rider.
  3. Use said bike to commute to places that fall outside my walking range once I am able to. -> See point above.
  4. Take <10 ride shares in 2020. -> This will be easier now that I have a car.
  5. [Stretch] Not buy a car until I can guarantee that is electric powered and that electricity is being generated via renewable resources. -> I preordered a Tesla – woohoo!

Travel

This is hard, given the limited travel going on right now. It’s easy to say I won’t fly anymore. However, it will be hard to stick by it when travel is allowed. This is why I am committing to doing more research in this field.

  1. Flying: Start looking into if carbon offsets are actually useful or just a way to pat oneself on the back? -> Haven’t done this, though I did take the train a few times and it was so much fun!
  2. Hotel stays: Look into whether hotels or AirBnBs are more sustainable. Look into staying at hotels that are trying to be carbon neutral. -> Haven’t done this!
  3. Start looking into how I can make my travel habits more sustainable (not buying travel sized toiletries for e.g.) -> Haven’t done this.

Conclusion

So as you can see from the above list, I haven’t really done a good job of sticking to the sustainability goals I had set out for myself. I actually only got 3/18 (1/6) right!

So now, I am going to revisit these goals and see if it makes sense to set new goals or if I just need to recommit to these goals and stop being a lazy bum! Stay tuned!

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