Will The Next Generation get to Experience the Wonders of Whale Watching in the Whitsundays?
In 2012 I moved to Australia on a ‘working holiday visa’, which meant I could work and travel around the country for one year.
I’d heard a lot about Melbourne and liked the sound of it, a chilled city with lots of exciting things going on, big on live music and theatre, a cafe culture, very friendly people and beaches, lots of beaches.
I settled in the city and worked for Wake and Waterski magazine. My colleagues had grown up in and around water and wildlife and had made the most of living near the beach. They were so passionate about getting out of work to go to the beach or go out on the water to wake board or waterski. What an amazing life, a complete contrast to my life back home in London.
While I was working there, our boss noticed how much coffee we were drinking out of disposable cups and sent us the link to KeepCup (a Melbourne based business) he gave us his card and told us to order KeepCups for the whole office. I still have mine 6 years later, imagine how many disposable cups I would’ve used if it wasn’t for that one decision by an environmentally conscious boss and a business who were all about being kinder to the planet by reducing single use coffee cups.
Whilst living in Australia, I was lucky enough to have a few adventures of my own. I travelled the East Coast stopping at various towns along the way, the beaches were pristine and really well looked after.
I’d met a few people who were travelling in the same direction as I was and our coach arrived in Airlie beach just as the travel agents for the sailing trips were closing. We popped in to see if they had space on any of the boats leaving the next day and managed to get tickets on a sailing boat leaving first thing, a boat that none other than Prince Charles had sailed on a few years prior, jammy.
So, I spent several days sailing around the Whitsundays (a place I’d always dreamt of visiting) with a group of people who were just as blown away by its beauty as I was, it was as spectacular as I’d hoped.
From the boat,I saw whales playing and waving, I even got to see a few adults with their calves, such an amazing sight. Swimming and snorkelling along the Great Barrier Reef, with all the colourful fish and coral, another highlight, an opportunity of a lifetime that I hope we can preserve.
I jumped on a boat from Townsville and spent a few days on Magnetic Island where the beaches go on for miles. The island is so clean, peaceful and unspoiled, I walked for miles around it and saw so much wildlife. I finally got to see koalas sitting in trees, in the wild. This trip and my time living in Australia really brought the importance of looking after the planet to life for me.
It made me become more conscious about how the small things we do collectively can make a huge impact. The simple realisation, that the things we throw away end up somewhere and where they end up really does matter, it has made me more conscious about my actions and the impact of my choices.
I’d always recycled and tried to only buy things/clothes when I felt I had a need to. I’d also spent a lot of time at my allotment by Ally Pally growing my own food, but there was definitely more I could be doing. Let’s face it, we could all make a few simple changes to be kinder to the planet.
I developed an interest and a curiosity for innovative ways to clean up the oceans, to put less waste in landfill and to use less plastic. It’s encouraging that so many businesses and individuals are taking the problems caused by plastic seriously.
The environmental problem that used to be seen as a niche interest, that charities such as Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth were left to solve, have now been highlighted to a wider audience and have become a more mainstream concern.
Thanks to programs and films like Blue Planet II and Planet Ocean, people now have a greater awareness of the worrying impact of our actions on our oceans and wildlife.
My time in Melbourne was 6 years ago, back then some people were making steps towards being kinder to the planet but now I see more people making a conscious effort. It’s now frowned upon to buy bottled water and pressure is increasingly being put on companies who use plastic packaging.
Carrying reusable water bottles, cutlery and coffee cups is steadily becoming the norm. However, there’s still a long way to go, it’s very tricky to buy lunch on the go that isn’t packaged in plastic perhaps lunchboxes will make more of a come back over the next few years?
The amount of businesses making inroads to improving the way we recycle, the way we package, wrap and use things seems to be moving in the right direction. The are lots of exciting innovations that work towards making the world we live in a more environmentally conscious one.
It feels as though we are at a turning point where more people want to be part of the plastic solution than the plastic problem.
I love hearing about projects that are helping to raise awareness and/or making a positive impact, it fills me with hope that the next generations will see the amazing sights I’ve seen, from The Great Barrier Reef to whales playing happily in clean water.
10 Simple Planet Friendly Lifestyle Switches
- Carry a reusable coffee cup
- Take your packed lunch in a reusable lunch box rather than buying a plastic packaged meal deal
- Eat less meat, if you cut down on meat you could save tonnes of CO2, spend less and have a healthier diet
- Plant bee friendly wildflowers and other plants for your garden or window box. Join Friends of the Earths Great British Bee Count this May + June. Seedballs are super easy to plant.
- Learn to fix your clothes and make them last. Simple sewing skills will save you money on buying replacements and will ensure material doesn’t go to waste.
- Get a compost bin and make your food waste work for you. If you’re lucky enough to have an allotment or a garden a compost bin can be really useful. Many local authorities collect food waste to use as compost for parks and gardens in your local area. Recycling food in this way can also make you more aware of how much you waste and make you more likely to plan your food shops to waste less, ultimately saving you money.
- Switch to an eco friendly energy supplier, such as Ecotricity or Good Energy.
- Carry a reusable straw, some available on here, I’ve also seen some bars that are opting to use pasta straws that are less expensive than metal ones.
- Use reusable beeswax food wrap, Bee Bee Wraps are stylish and practical.
- I couldn’t finish my top 10 without mentioning our ‘Badge for Life’. Switch your plastic name badges for stylish, durable wooden badges, see our name badges page to find out more.
Planet Friendly Projects Worth Getting Excited About
Thanks for reading!
Bough to Beauty Bespoke
Being a green business will help the environment and could improve your company’s chances of success. Sustainable business is about meeting three key requirements; being environmentally friendly, considerate towards society (especially those affected by your business), and profitable so the business can survive, thrive and act responsibly whilst making a positive impact.
It isn’t about writing a policy and filing it away to gather dust, it’s about taking action. A sustainable business should have these values ingrained in their business strategy and daily decision making. Do you run a sustainable business?
At Bough to Beauty Bespoke, we want to help you by sharing innovative solutions that tackle environmental challenges facing businesses today. We’ve lined up some inspiring interviews with successful sustainable businesses that are making a positive impact.