The shocking images of the 5 mile radius of floating plastic litter in the Caribbean Sea both saddened and maddened me whilst making me feel guilty about what mankind is doing to our lovely planet.
As I live near the sea and have a crazy Labrador cross Springer Spaniel I am often found on the beach - not starring out to sea but head bent either picking up litter or picking up beautiful sea glass. The sea glass I keep and recycle into art; the rubbish goes straight into the nearest council bin or recycling container.
Manufacturers are slowly adjusting their practices which means reducing their use of plastic packaging which is good news but it did make me think hotels/guest houses/b&b's should also get their act together to be more environmentally friendly.
So.... at my guest house www.buckinghamlodge.uk we have taken some steps to be more environmentally friendly - things that you could also put into action for your own home - some will even save you money!
1. Energy saving lightbulbs in all rooms and public areas. Ugly but necessary.
2. Packaging reduction. We no longer use small individual cereal boxes but have bought individual dispensers for our selection of cereals. We have also replaced individual sugar sachets with bowls of sugar, marmalade portions with my home made marmalade which is scrummy.
3. Water is one of the most expensive and wasteful commodities in a hotel - we have replaced a lot of our baths with showers instead and use close coupled toilets which use less water to flush.
4. We are encouraging guests to recycle where possible, removing all recyclable waste from guest rooms for collection.
5. Plastic water bottles for rooms have been replaced with glass that can be refilled with safe drinking water.
6. We encourage guests to turn off lights when leaving the room and we switch off standbys/fridges whenever a room is empty for a while.
7. In our Reception area there is a box containing plastic bags for guests wandering out into town to save the 5p charge and reduce landfill
If you can suggest any that I have missed, please feel free to comment, together we can make this happen...