This is the second in our series of monthly ideas for going green and I’m going to take a look at money and how our daily finances impact the planet. The way that we save, invest and use our money can have a positive impact on the environment and climate change. Read on to find out more.
There are a growing number of companies that provide financial services and products that either invest in activities to combat climate change or actively avoid investing in activities which would otherwise have an adverse impact. When choosing insurance look to Climate Sure, which offsets the carbon you use for the activity you are insuring. They calculate the CO2 that a car insurance customer produces when driving and pays for this to be offset by Climate Care. Carbon offsetting is considered a cop-out by many environmentalists and I agree that we cannot continue to live a high carbon lifestyle, paying to assuage our guilt and expect everything to be okay. But, arguably this is better than using your standard insurer and having no idea what happens to the premiums you pay every month.
Triodos is where we do our banking at The Green Parent, it’s an award winning ethical bank that offers a secure home for your savings and investments and offers fantastic customer service. The Co-operative Bank has a strict ethical policy, turning away some £10 million worth of business last year because it did not meet with the bank’s ethical requirements.
If you are planning to move home this year, Ecology Building Society will be able to ensure that your mortgage investment is used to support sustainable living projects. More information about mortgages and also savings accounts can be found on their website.
A good book to read is The Simple Living Guide: A Sourcebook for Less Stressful, More Joyful Living by Janet Luhrs, with chapters on work, money and family. We also found the Money as Debt short film fascinating and enlightening. It explains how much of today’s money does not actually exist in a clear and concise manner, encouraging the viewer to completely rethink their beliefs about money and the banking system.
Finally, now is a great time to take a different approach to money – think about bartering skills between neighbours and friends, borrowing and lending items rather than buying new, joining the Freecycle movement, getting involved with your local LETS scheme. The New Economics Foundation have plenty more ideas on their website. Got any more ideas for getting creative and green with your money? Share them with us.
Welcome to the new blog from the Green Parent office. Here we'll talk about what's going on in the small and quite leafy headquarters of the UK's leading green lifestyle magazine. We'll share news that interests us and talk about green issues and natural parenting. We'll share advice and information from our own experiences of living a green lifestyle. And we'll even tell you what we are reading, eating, drinking and thinking. Hope you get plenty of food for thought here.