FUTURE-PROOFING THE PLANET: The Importance of Leading By Example

By Isla Stanich

For a long time, we’ve known in order to create lasting change, it’s important we pass messages and values along to the next generation. Today’s youth are the world’s future’s leaders, and it’s inevitable they’ll inherit a climate-changed planet.

We know a warming planet, left unchecked, will violently transform ecosystems, as well as increase the frequency and severity of bushfires, droughts, heatwaves and floods. We also know that if single-use plastic production and consumption continues at today’s current rate, we can expect mass extinctions of marine animals worldwide, and a decline in the physical and mental health of humans.

“We are at a time where yes, we have a problem. But we’re also at a time where we can solve it. And how good would it be if we can one day say we’ve done it.” – Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg.

In 2019, we understand the extent of damage that’s already been made. But we also have the resources available for us to create change.

Connected by our devices, we have endless opportunity to make our voice heard. Whether this be to educate, inform and inspire others to make eco-friendly choices, we hold the power unlock the door to a sustainable future. We are all each other’s role models, and even more so to children.

The actions we make today are shaping our future, so what are we waiting for?

PODCAST: The Importance Of Educating Kids About Sustainability

In order to live more sustainably, all we need to do is make a few simple changes to our daily routine. Below are 10 simple steps we can take to decrease our impact on the planet.


1. Use a keep cup and save each of takeaway cups from going into landfill and littering our environment, every year.

2. Reusable containers are a great way to store food without the need for glad wrap and zip lock bags.

3. Change your light bulbs to LEDs. LED lights have a 90% lower energy consumption than regular lights and an exceptionally longer lifespan of 60 000 hours. Or to step things up a notch… invest in renewable energy.

4. Buy fruit and vegetables without packaging. Ditch the plastic for your own reusable bags.

5. Say no to plastic straws and hello to reusable straws. You can buy them in glass, bamboo and stainless steel.

6. Ditch single-use plastic bottles for re-usable bottles. Some reusable water bottles keep water cold for up to 24 hours and warm for 12.

7. Buy food from bulk food stores. Condiments like pasta, grains, oats, rice, nuts, granola, cereals and herbs can all be purchased in bulk from local bulk food stores. In Australia, The Source Bulk Foods are dedicated to promoting 100% zero-waste lifestyles.

8. Reduce your meat and dairy consumption. Australia’s agriculture industry contributes toward 15% of our nation’s carbon emissions. Documentaries like Cowspiracy are great at breaking down the role agriculture plays in climate change.

9. Ditch the car. Walk or ride your bike instead. It’ll save emissions, save you $$, and will get your heart pumping.

10. Instead of turning on the air conditioning, open a window for fresh air, or rug up in a blanket before turning up the heat.

Still eager for more tips? This website has over 101.