(BPT) – Being mindful of your personal impact can save money, reduce your carbon footprint and inspire others to adopt sustainable habits in their daily routines. Whether it’s purchasing gifts from responsible brands, building backyard biodiversity, or making eco-friendly swaps around the house and at the table, individual action can make a big difference. Here are a few ways to get started.
1) Boost biodiversity
Biodiversity makes the planet more resilient and helps fight climate change. Winter is a great time of year to set up nest boxes, put out bird feed, and plan what you’ll be planting in the spring — whether it’s a few pots on your balcony or a backyard pollinator garden.
Pairing: Bonterra 2020 Sauvignon Blanc, California – Bonterra takes biodiversity and climate change seriously: they are the world’s first organically farmed, Climate Neutral Certified wine, and support biodiversity through cover cropping and incorporating animals in the vineyard. For a lively winter white, try this crisp Sauvignon Blanc that offers aromas of grapefruit on the nose and mango and passionfruit on the palate.
2) Try a plant-based menu
Conventional animal agriculture is associated with higher greenhouse gas emissions, so eating a plant-based diet can help reduce your personal impact on climate change. Rather than be relegated to side dish status, fruits and veggies are starting to take center stage for more meals. If leafy greens aren’t exactly your style, try “meatier” swap-ins such as savory mushrooms, vegan cheese, and plant-based meat.
Pairing: Trivento 2020 Reserve Malbec, Mendoza – Perfect for a meat-free meal, Trivento wines are certified vegan. Imported by Fetzer Vineyards, this Argentine winery also powers a portion of its operations with an array of more than 900 solar panels. Rich flavors of plum and raspberry are accented with a hint of vanilla in this classic Malbec selection from Argentina.
3) Get creative with zero-waste styling
To eliminate waste and lighten your personal footprint, “reduce, reuse, recycle.” This could include upcycling scrap paper from greeting cards or magazines for custom gift wrapping, DIYing your table decorations, and buying the “ugly” produce at the grocery store (especially if you’re going to chop it up anyway!). Every little bit helps, and it’s an ideal time of year for getting creative.
Pairing: Fetzer 2020 Chardonnay, California – Fetzer is a B Corp and certified TRUE zero waste, and reduces water and energy usage through innovation at the winery. Fetzer recently lightweighted its Chardonnay bottles through improved design, meaning fewer emissions are created when bottles are made and shipped. Ripe flavors of pear and apple lead to notes of pineapple and honeydew in this bright Chardonnay.
4) Pay it forward
What goes around comes around — and this adage comes to life through conscious consumerism and the circular economy. It’s never been a better or more important time to pay attention to supply chains, worker welfare, and paying it forward. Participate by buying from retailers whose values you share, tipping hard-working hospitality workers, and seeking out brands taking responsibility for their footprints from start to finish.
Pairing: Cono Sur 2019 Bicicleta Pinot Noir – Certified “Fair for Life” for Social Responsibility, Chilean winery Cono Sur emphasizes fair labor practices and delivers beneficial social works and community programs. Cono Sur also helps reduce your impact by ensuring CarbonNeutral delivery for its wines around the world. Vibrant notes of cherry and raspberry balance refreshing acidity and a fruit-forward palate in this rewarding red that’s perfect for sharing.