Sustainability and Having a Baby

In recent years, the damage that we as a species have caused to the environment has become all too apparent. Climate change, acid rain, a hole in the ozone layer and a huge plastic epidemic, we have not been kind to our mother earth. We all know that something needs to change, and so if you want to reduce your carbon footprint and you’re expecting a baby, here are some things you can do.

Feeding

Breastfeeding isn’t an option for everyone; there are a number of hugely personal reasons for choosing breast or bottle feeding for your baby and whichever you make is the right choice for your family. However, from a sustainability perspective, breastfeeding is the best option as there’s no waste. Baby formula is made using cows milk which of course means cows are being kept. There are lots of reasons why feeding and watering livestock are damaging to the environment, so anything that creates less demand for meat or dairy is a good thing for the planet. When it comes to formula, you also have empty tubs that can end up in landfill. If you need to bottle feed but are conscious of your carbon footprint, consider a dairy free baby formula and a company that uses recyclable packaging. 

Nappies

Nappies are one of the worst offenders when it comes to plastic ending up in landfills and in the oceans. Babies go through a lot of them, and if you imagine all of the babies combined, each using nappies which each take 200-500 years to decompose, it sheds light onto the huge plastic issue in the environment. When you’re at home, consider using washable nappies, or you could switch to a compostable brand which is much more environmentally friendly. Even if you can cut down your standard nappy usage it’s a good thing for planet earth.

Clothing

Babies grow at an incredible pace, meaning they go through so many clothes. It can be really rewarding and fun dressing up your baby in cute outfits, but it’s not great news for the environment as clothes waste is another huge issue. It’s easy to overbuy and go crazy with baby clothes, but if you scale it back and buy what you need rather than excessively then it’s a smart move for the environment. Consider purchasing second hand baby clothes to give outfits a new lease of life, since most babies will have only worn them for a short time you’ll find most second hand baby clothes are in almost perfect condition. Be sure to donate your baby’s old clothes too when they no longer fit- pass them to relatives who are expecting, to charity shops or anyone in need on Facebook. 

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