Camping is a favourite pastime for many people. With a little extra planning, you can help minimise your waste, protect the local wildlife, environment, and lower your impact during your next camping adventure.
Here are some tips to help you make your adventure a little more eco friendly.
1.Buy used gear or rent the camping equipment you need. For those items you may not want to purchase used, such as your sleeping bag, there are eco-friendly options from which you can choose.
2. Invest in reusable items. Plastic plates and utensils can be hard to recycle. In fact, most of those forks and spoons are too small to be collected in a recycling sorting machine. Instead you could:
- Bring cutlery, utensils and plates etc from home. But remember you’ll need a tub, scrubber and a little extra water to clean the dishes.
- If weight is an issue, you may want to look for collapsible bowls and mugs, all-in-one cutlery like sporks and reusable beeswax wraps and snack packs
- Instead of a buying a 10L plastic bottle of water that will need to be thrown out, buy a reusable drink dispenser and fill up at home.
3. Device free holiday. As a nation, we definitely are addicted to our devices, whether it be smart phones, tablets or game consoles. Why not take a break and go back to nature with a good old fashioned camping holiday. Think swimming, card games, board games, playing outside, reading a book and a camp fire with marshmallows of course!. Try to only use your mobile phone at hand to use for emergencies only.
4. Be responsible with your waste. Have a few separate bags or bins that you can use to separate your waste and recycling. If where you are camping is remote and there are not bins available to dispose of your rubbish in, make sure you take it all with you and leave the environment as you found it. Follow the concept of “Leave no trace camping.Keep it out of the streams
5. Keep it out of the streams. Enjoy a swim, but don’t shampoo or dump your soapy dishwasher in any creeks, rivers or streams etc. Use biodegradable soap, but this still needs a hand to decompose properly. Detergents, sunscreens and soap can cause significant harm to river eco-systems over time. A better option is to use a portable camping shower to wash away from water sources, and don’t pour your dirty dishwater into creeks or rivers.
6. Go Solar. Opt for solar accessories for the bare necessities, instead of your generator
- A headtorch is a must when you’re camping, a solar charged lantern is great for shared spaces or your tent.
- It’s never a bad idea to have a fully-charged mobile phone in case of emergencies. If you’re camping for a few days or more, consider taking a rechargeable charger that can recharge your devices.
7. Be responsible with your camping fire.Camp fires are an essential part of the camping experience. To keep it green as it can be:
- Don’t make your fire bigger than you need it.
- If possible use a campsite BBQ as much as you can.
- Limit the amount of kindling you forage from the local area, or better still, bring your own.
- Only light a fire in the designated area
- Extinguish your ashes properly before you go to bed and before you leave the site
Please check for any warnings and fire restrictions in the area you are going to before you head off. Never light a fire when restrictions are in place.