The Art of Sustainable Living Handbook


Baby Wipes campaign

Unlike toilet paper, baby wipes DO NOT break down when flushed down the toilet. Even though most baby wipes packaging states that the wipes are flushable this simply means that when you put them down the toilet and flush the chain they will disappear. In fact the wipes stay intact and cause blockages in our sewers and drains. Wet wipes are behind up to 80% of blockages in UK sewers, costing around £100 million.

The aims of the campaign include;

  • sharing the message that all baby wipes and similar must be placed in a bin and not flushed
  • working with manufacturers of baby wipes to change the messages on their packaging


Beef - virtual water

Beef is the name of meat from domestic cattle. It is possible to calculate the virtual water used in the production of beef by examining the virtual water consumed by a cow during it's lifetime. On average it takes 3 years before a cow is slaughtered, thought sometimes less and will produce 200kg of beef. 

During these 3 years we would expect the cow to drink approximately 24,000 litres of water, consume food including grains, e.g. wheat and oats, and roughage, e.g. grass and hay, requiring 3,060,000 litres of water and 7,000 litres in the slaughtering process. That's a total of 3,091,000 litres in total.

On average it requires 15,400 litres of water to produce 1kg of beef. 



Beekeepers have warned that most of the UK's bee population (estimated at some 250,000) could be wiped out in around 10 years.  The combined effects of the spread of disease by the "varroa mite", bad weather, the use of insecticides and lack of wild flowers together could see national bee populations plummet, and have caused similar damage in the USA - where around 80% of the national population has died out!

Annually bees contribute reportedly between £165 - 850 million through the pollination of crops, as well as an additional £12 million in honey produced!  Not only are bees an integral part of our economy but some thirty-five per cent of our diet relies on the pollination of crops by bees and it is often said that if bees became extinct, humans would follow only four years later (this quote is oft accredited to Albert Einstein).

The British Bee Keepers Association and other groups have been successful in lobbying government for more money to be made available to research the problem and hopefully address would be the cause of this natural catastrophe.

Here at the Green Centre we're offering your own "Bee Boxes" made from reused wood off-cuts to encourage bee populations to thrive in your own garden.  The boxes cost between £5 - 10 depending on size.  The BBC has some useful pages of tips and hints for bee box users here.  


BHESCO work with property owners in Sussex to help them meet their energy needs with efficient buildings and affordable, community-owned green energy. Learn more. 

Big Lemon

The Big Lemon is a Community Interest Company which operates a bus and coach business and was founded by Tom Druitt in 2007. Between 2007 and 2017 the  Big Lemon ran all it's buses on recycled waste cooking oil from local restaurants. The waste oil was collected from chip shops, restaurants and hotels in Brighton & Hove and across Sussex. It was then processed in a factory near Eastbourne to make biodiesel, a plant-based alternative to regular mineral diesel.

in 2017 the Big Lemon became the first bus and coach business to run a bus powered by solar power harnessed from solar panels on the roof of the bus depot. Learn more.  




Biodiversity is the shortened form of two words "biological" and "diversity." It refers to all the variety of life that can be found on Earth (plants, animals, fungi and micro-organisms) as well as to the communities that they form and the habitats in which they live. Learn more.



BioRegional was founded in 1994 by Sue Riddlestone and Pooran Desai, two environmental activists and campaigners based in Sutton, South London. Both were keen to found practical green and sustainable initiatives. From small beginnings, it has grown into an organisation which has founded several green enterprises, influences the sustainability of many thousands of new homes and works with global businesses to make their operations and strategy more sustainable.

Bioregional operates internationally with offices in North America, South Africa, Mexico and Australia as well as in the UK. There are eighteen pioneering One Planet Communities, Cities and Companies around the world doing amazing things to demonstrate it is possible for us all to live happy and healthy lives within the earth’s resources. But many, many more than this are adopting One Planet Living.

Brighton and Hove Bus Company

Brighton & Hove Buses have set a goal to operate a zero emissions fleet by 2030. They have recently invested £7.6 million in 31 more almost emissions-free Euro 6 standard buses. That’s a 48% increase from last year (up £2.5 million). All Brighton & Hove buses will be Euro 5 standard (or better) by 2019, six months ahead of the city’s Low Emission’s Zone target.

Campaigns include tackling congestion, improving air quality, promoting sustainable transport, improving fuel efficiency, reducing emissions and acquiring hydrogen fuel cell buses. Learn more.


Brighton and Hove Food Partnership

Brighton and Hove Food Partnership is a non-profit organisation helping people learn to cook, eat a healthy diet, grow their own food and waste less food. Learn more.

Brighton Bike Share

Thank you to You Well for providing this information. 

Brighton is a great city for cycling as the council recently introduced Cycle contraflows which allow cyclists to travel both ways down the streets which are only one way for cars. The contraflows can be found on streets across Brighton such as Campbell Road, Hampden Road, and Trafalgar Street. If you want to explore Brighton on a bike but you don't have a bike with you, then there are plenty of places where you can hire either a push bike or an electric bike from. Here are some of the best options:

  • Cannonball Bikes - an excellent range of e-bikes to choose from, with options for people who want something simple or something more advanced. Prices start from £45 for a 4 hour rental.
  • All Bikes Electric - really affordable rental and great for a standard no frills electric bike, hire prices start from £35 per day
  • Beryl Bikes - this scheme relaunched in early 2023 and seems to be sticking around unlike the previous scheme. Hiring a Beryl electric bike will cost you 15p per minute, which is quite handy if you're getting from A to B around the city. The bikes are rather clunky but still a good choice
  • Brighton Beach Bikes - a nice selection of push bikes and hybrid bikes, prices start from £6 per hour
  • Brighton Bike Tours - a great range of city bikes, mountain bikes, and hybrid bikes. Prices start from £20 for a full day which is very reasonable.


Brighton Energy Cooperative

Brighton Energy Coop is all about community investment in renewable energy. Everyone puts in a bit of cash and collectively this is used to build big solar energy systems. Money from selling this solar electricity gets distributed back to members, and to a community fund. Learn more.

Buy 2nd hand

An important part of the waste hierarchy is reuse. One of the ways we can reuse items and prolong their life is to sell those items we no longer use OR purchase the items we need second hand instead of new.  There are many popular websites; 

  • Facebook Marketplace  Goods can be collected in person or posted.
  • Gumtree - is a British online classified advertisement and community website. Classified ads are either free or paid for depending on the product category and the geographical market. Goods can be collected in person (preferred) or posted.

  • Ebayis an American multinational e-commerce corporation that facilitates consumer-to-consumer and business-to-consumer sales through its website. You can list 1,000 items a month FREE of charge and then the cost is 35p per listing. The sales fee is 10% of the transaction value (including post and packaging and sale price) up to £250. There are a list of optional add-on fees hereGoods are posted.

  • Preloved - is an online classified ads and community website based in the UK. Ads can be paid for or free depending on the exposure desired. Goods can be collected in person (preferred) or posted.
  • Shpock - is the car boot sale app that allows users to buy, sell or give away items in your local area. Potential buyers can contact you to negotiate a price with you, despite you needing to set a sale price for your item. Goods can be collected in person (preferred) or posted. 

  • Amazon - is an American multinational technology company that focuses on e-commerce, cloud computing, digital streaming, and artificial intelligence. It is the world's largest online retailer. The sale fee is £0.75 per item sold (under the individual plan). Other fees are listed here. 
  • FridayAd - was launched in Sussex and was the UK’s first free classified paper. It is an online marketplace for buying and selling a vast range of second hand items. As a pricvate seller you can sell your goods for free. Goods can be collected in person (preferred) or posted. 

In addition to these on-line selling platforms for general items, there are also specialized websites focusing on particular categories;  

  • musicMagpie - buy and sell mobile phones, Technology, CDs, DVDs, games, LEGO, Books. The minimum value required to sell goods is £5. You can post, drop off or courier. 

  • Ziffit - buy and sell books, CDs, Games and DVDs. The minimum value required to sell goods is £5.You can drop off or courier. 

  • AbeBooks - buy and sell books, art and collectibles. Goods are posted.

  • WeBuyBooks - buy and sell books, CDs, DVDs and games. The minimum value required to sell goods is £5. Goods are posted or dropped off.

  • Momox - buy and sell books, CDs, DVDs and games. The minimum value required to sell goods is £10. Goods are posted.

  • Mazuma - buy and sell mobile phones. Goods are posted. Package is provided.

  • SellMyMobile - buy and sell mobile phones. Goods are posted. Package is provided.

  • Envirofone - buy and sell mobile phones. Goods are posted. Package is provided.

Business Waste

Any waste that comes from a commercial activity is business waste and includes the following;

  1. Business premises - all waste generated at a business premises, e.g. office, retail premises, etc
  2. Working from home - if you use part of your home to run your business then any waste from that part is business waste, e.g. you might run a hairdressing business from home  
  3. Mobile trader - if you work as a gardener any waste you generate is classed as business waste
  4. Other categories
    • construction
    • demolition
    • industry
    • agriculture
  • How to dispose of business waste?
  • Large fines for incorrect disposal of business waste?