Going Green: Make little changes before visiting the seaside
Temperatures in the UK this summer are set to be some of the hottest on record again and while people are staying put in the UK for their holidays because of the warm weather bought on by climate change, the fact they’re not flying abroad can only be a good thing.
With that in mind though, we can all make sure our visits to the seaside are environmentally friendly. Little changes and putting a bit more thought into getting there and enjoying the beaches while you’re there can go a long way towards helping the environment.
The general UK population first started visiting seaside resorts in the Victorian era and as such most coastal towns and cities and places have got great rail infrastructure. Places like Teignmouth in Devon have a train station just steps from the beach so if you can take a train, do. It’s a more relaxing way to travel as well as being better for the environment. There are plenty of bus routes across the UK that take in coastal areas too so don’t just reply on tracks, think about buses and coaches too.
If you do have to take the car, make sure it’s full – and I don’t mean with beach balls and wind breakers.
Invite the kids’ friends or offer a lift to a friend. Car travel isn’t great as we know but a full car is better than two people sat in the front. There are lift share websites and social media pages too so it might be you can get a lift yourself rather than driving your own car.
Borrow buckets and spades, they’re used so infrequently there’s not much point buying more, look on local websites and social media to see if you can borrow from someone nearby.
It's worth checking water quality before you go too, especially if there’s been heavy rain as that can be when water quality is compromised. The Government and Surfers Against Sewage have websites you can check: http://environment.data.gov.uk/bwq/profiles/ https://www.sas.org.uk/water-quality/sewage-pollution-alerts/
Don’t bother with costly plastic beach shoes, a pair of old trainers you don’t mind getting wet are just as good for rock pooling.
While picnics on the beach or local fish and chips are lovely, lots of seaside places have cafes serving local cakes and ice creams that have very few food miles on them as well as supporting the local economy, so you get to eat delicious food while helping the planet – what’s not to love?
Finally make sure you leave nothing but footprints. Take your own litter home.