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Sustainable living means being mindful of the impact your lifestyle has on the environment and making informed choices to reduce it. Before you think it’s just another fad Singapore is picking up on, it’s not. The need to change the way we live now is not only inevitable, it’s imperative.
Why should we care?
There are two issues that are very relevant to Singapore. Firstly, Semakau, Singapore's only landfill is filling up fast and is predicted to be full by 2035. That leaves us with only 16 years left to find a solution. Singaporeans need to switch from a mindset of convenience to one of reduce, reuse, recycle and even rot.
Secondly, climate change is a real threat and as mentioned by PM Lee in his National Day Rally speech this year, Singapore is already feeling its impact, with rising temperatures and sea levels. We need to make better lifestyle choices to reduce climate change such as limiting our meat intake, taking public transport (or even walking) as well as consuming and wasting less.
Be better at shopping
It’s hard for the shopping industry to ignore the threats to the environment and their impact on supply chains. It’s even harder to ignore how consumers have become more knowledgeable in the way supply chains can impact the environment and society too. Don’t be afraid to ask questions – we get a lot of curious people coming to The Green Collective SG asking about the ways in which they can change in order to lead a more sustainable lifestyle.
It definitely is not an overnight change, but we’ve made it easier for a regular person to start their journey towards sustainability. We have customers who start off with a bamboo straw and return to buy other sustainable products to replace those currently in their lifestyle such as reusable sanitary pads or a swimsuit made from recycled plastic bottles.
The Green Collective SG is possibly the first-ever retail concept globally to be curated based on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The 17 global goals were adopted by the UN in 2015 and are the basis of sustainability. The goals range from gender equality and climate action to responsible consumption and production. Each brand at The Green Collective SG is linked to achieving two or more of these goals. This helps people shop based on the causes they are passionate about. It also helps to get individuals to see how they can contribute to achieving the goals by 2030 (a timeline set by the UN). For example, if you are passionate about fair wages for workers, preserving traditional techniques and small batch production, then look out for brands that contribute towards UNSDGs 8 (Decent Work & Economic Growth), 5 (Gender Equality), and 12 (Responsible Consumption & Production).
One step at a time
Make small changes and the rest will follow. Start with something that you are passionate about – is it climate change, reducing waste, repairing things, or reducing meat consumption? Begin the journey with a group of friends or your family. Support each other along the way because you’ll need all the positive vibes you can get.