July is camping season. Anywhere that is not within the burnt concrete jungle should be just fine. But… do you know that camping could have harmful consequences for nature?
Not to put a damper on your campfire, but going camping can have awful consequences for the local wildlife. Discarded plastics and human interference are dangerous and only increase plastic pollution in nature.
Thankfully, with these 7 sustainable tips, your camping trip is greener than ever. Read on to find out what you have to do to have a green camping trip.
Why are your camping trips hurting the environment?
Camping doesn’t hurt the environment. Not directly, at least. Nothing polluting ever comes from building a campfire or setting up camp in the forest.
However, the plastic campers leave behind after packing up is another matter. July is the camping season, but it tends to result in lots of left-behind trash in the environment.
In 2019, a team of researchers from the University of Toronto found 31 kilograms of plastic trash at the mouth of the Don River two weeks into July. These include plastic bottles, food wrappers, toys, straws, and cigarette butts, all of which are typical leftovers from camping.
How can you lessen the damage while camping?
While camping season is in full swing, plastic trash heaps up. Even campers who are aware of the environmental impact of plastic trash can not perfectly clean up their plastic footprint.
Yes, no one wants to pollute the environment. But, no matter how careful you are, sometimes you unintentionally leave some plastic behind. It could be a plastic wrapper from a candy bar or an empty water bottle. Regardless, there are ways you can become a greener camper.
1. Bring only what you need
Good campers pack light. However, when it comes to family camping, a little excessiveness is unavoidable. Maybe it’s your kids wanting an extra candy bar, or maybe it’s you who can’t resist an extra 6-pack.
When your camping ground is far from convenient stores, packing light can seem counterintuitive. However, this limits the amount of trash you leave behind.
2. Avoid ordering takeout
Only wimps order takeout on a camping trip. While it is the easiest option to get food, takeout also generates a lot of trash. Worse, takeout is excessively wrapped in plastic, which is damaging to the environment when discarded. Wrappings for storing liquid foods like soup and coffee to prevent spills can be fairly large.
When camping, if you must use plastic containers, limit them to closed containers that keep food fresh. This will help to reduce the carbon impact as much as possible. A zero-waste dinner is always the most environmentally friendly option for a green camping trip.
3. Avoid disposables
Disposables are another common yet non-eco-friendly convenience while camping. These include plastic bottles. paper cups and plates, and plastic spoons and forks. Due to their short shelf-life, they are easily thrown away, becoming non-biodegradable litter on your camping site.
- Avoid creating a disposable wasteland by bringing reusable cloth napkins instead of paper towels and tissue. If you have to, have a bag for your plastic disposables after finishing with them. Then dispose of them properly.
- Alternatively, there are biodegradable disposables. It is made from bamboo and other safe-to-use materials and is safe for both you and the environment.
- Limit plastic bottles by bringing as little as possible. Remember, you can boil water from the camping site for safe drinking water. Bring reusable water bottles instead of disposable ones.
4. Purchase supplies only when absolutely necessary
This is easy. The more you shop, the more you harm the environment. Try buying your camping and picnic gear only when necessary. That means checking your garage or attic before going shopping for your next camping trip.
Everything you need for a green camping trip is right in your own backyard. Blankets, carry-on bags, and a look around your house; the ideal picnic gear is already there. Home supplies reduce waste, expense, and carbon emissions associated with new product purchases.
5. Ice ice, baby!
Cool drinks are essential to counter the punishing summer heat. Lots of times, this means dragging your bags and bags of ice along. Which should be fine, except that these bags are made from plastic. And we are trying to cut that down on our camping trip.
Instead of buying bagged ice, try bringing a cooler or an ice container. There are ice containers made from stainless steel that keep your ice frozen for a very long time. While they are kind of expensive, a coupon from Tenere’s coupon database should make these containers fall a little within your budget.
6. Packaging food
A common misconception is that plastic wrappers are the only option when it comes to food wrapping. These wraps, while convenient, are also non-biodegradable (have you picked up on our theme just yet?).
Thankfully, there are beeswax food wrappers to ease your worry, now available in supermarkets near you. They are just as good as plastic or sarin wrappers, and you can re-use them by washing them in cold water.
7. Bug spray and sunscreen
As much as you hate to admit it, we are not as thick-skinned as we thought. When camping, sunburns and bug bites can turn a good camping trip into a painful and itchy memory. That’s why bug spray and sunscreen are always available in your camping kit. But the chemicals from them can pollute the water source when washed.
To stay safe from pesky bugs and cancerous sun rays, protect your skin with zero-waste bug spray and sunscreen. There are lots of organic brands on the market that can ensure both your safety and the environment.
As a coupon site that endorses reforestation worldwide, Tenere does its part in promoting a green lifestyle. This summer, why not make your camping trip extra fun for both your family and Mother Nature? With these tips, staying green when camping is now a lot more possible.
And better yet, many of the sustainable items on this list are available with a great discount on Tenere.