Having worked on this project from January 2016 the following things have been significant to me.
The setting of goals is important and you need to aim for improvement but the critical thing is not the numbers or results but time. Can you fit the changes made into you everyday life? If you can make the space in a busy schedule then that is the biggest improvement!
Making changes is difficult and can be challenging when you have the day job and people demanding your time and effort in ways that do not help you make the changes you want. Being single minded – sometimes in the face of conflict and differences – is important. Stick to your guns and you will at least know you tried even if the results aren’t what you wanted.
Be aware that there are lots of people around you who are keen to improve on and change the many ways they impact the environment and local community. The changes that are being made by all of the people involved in Live LAGOM is there to see and I hope the principles, ideas and inspirational changes being made are distilled into a number of key policies that we can all utilise in our daily lives.
In terms of changes I have seen the summary is below. As I have said previously this is an old house with lots of quirks and issues. the simplest change was to go LED with the lighting which is an easy change. The issue of storage is not so easy as we have what we have and space is at a premium but changes have been made. In decorating two rooms at the same time it created a lot of work and tasks that would have been more easily dealt with when doing one room at a time. Take it from me never ever decorate more than one room at a time! Relationships can be tested!
So what is the result of all of this effort?
Reduction in use of electricity – I have seen a big change of 18% approx. in usage, combined with the LED lights and changes in the use of white goods etc, the end result on the bill is significant – lets see how that goes during the summer months.
Storage in this old house is tricky and the use of the mirror/clothes rack, the indoor clothes dryer have resulted in a change and improvement in being able to tidy up the usual pile of clothes in the bedroom and being able to dry two loads of washing indoors on a wet and cold day has really helped in keeping things tidy. These have made a positive difference, even with a little resistance in the beginning.
Organising our waste in the kitchen has been added to with two smaller waste bins and this is much more of a mindset than anything else. We now dispose of much more recycling waste and the food waste is not out on the drainer in a small box. Making the whole thing more hygienic and safer. This reduction in non-recyclable waste is great and very noticable.
Would I recommend doing this sort of thing? Yes I would. It keeps the issues of improving your local environment and being more thoughtful about sustainability is more relevant when you are working the issue at your own level. Small steps make a difference, leading to bigger changes.
Go ahead and try doing something like this for yourself. You know it makes sense!