Eco-conscious Brits are more sustainable than ever as they buy reusable shopping bags and batteries for the first time

Six in 10 Brits have tried to be more sustainable than ever before in 2021 – with many purchasing reusable shopping bags, coffee cups and even rechargeable batteries for the first time this year. 

The poll of 2,000 adults discovered more than a fifth (21 per cent) have made 2021 the year they ensure everything that can be recycled is, with 67 per cent of those spurred on by images of plastic on beaches and in oceans.


More Britons than ever are turning to reusable products likes coffee mugs.Credit: Alamy

A further 17 per cent have attended a local litter pick for the first time, and encouragingly, 58 per cent believe that the eco-firsts they have introduced are not one-offs. 

Of the parents surveyed, 62 per cent think these sustainable actions will have a lasting impact throughout their child’s life. 

In fact, a third (33 per cent) have become greener this year after being inspired by their little ones. 

The research was commissioned to launch the new TV series of Fireman Sam, on 4th October on Cartoonito, which incorporates a sustainability and marine conservation theme, teaching young tots how to look after the environment.

Helen Genia, a spokesperson from the Fireman Sam show said: “It is incredibly encouraging to learn about the eco-friendly changes the nation has already made this year. 

“Our new series introduces eco-friendly messages and lessons which we hope will encourage and inspire our young viewers and their families to continue to make sustainable changes and a positive difference to our planet.”

The study also found 45 per cent are determined to introduce even more eco-firsts in the future – with soap bars and natural cleaning products ranked among the top items which will be making into shopping trollies. 

More than three in 10 (31 per cent) are committed to repairing items rather than buying new and 29 per cent want to see out the year by grow their own food for the first time. 

It also revealed how people are looking to look after the environment even when they go on holiday.

This summer, half (50 per cent) of those polled went on a staycation – with 54 per cent of these visiting a beach during their trip. 

Of those that ventured to the sandy shores of the UK, 71 per cent claimed they were ‘excellent’ at taking their litter away with them.

And 35 per cent made an increased effort to be green and sustainable during their trip this year. 

Unfortunately, more than a third (35 per cent) claimed to have seen more litter than usual on the beaches this year.

Holidaymakers even stated that PPE, such as face masks and gloves, were more prominent among the litter on beaches, as 34 per cent witnessed a ‘significant’ amount of it discarded. 

To mark the launch of the new TV show Fireman Sam has teamed up with the Marine Conservation Society, and with the help of primary students at Bearwood Primary School in Poole, Dorset, took part in the charities ‘Great British Beach Clean Up’. 


1.            Reusable shopping bag 

2.            Reusable produce bags

3.            Reusable coffee cups

4.            Rechargeable batteries

5.            Soap bars

6.            Natural cleaning products

7.            Metal straws 

8.            Compostable bin liners

9.            Recycled toilet paper

10.          Stainless steel/reusable drink bottles

11.          Shampoo bars

12.          Clothes made from recycled fabric

13.          Reusable lunch wraps

14.          Recycled or wooden toothbrush

15.          Reusable cotton kitchen towels

16.          Biodegradable garden pots

17.          Silicone stretch lids

18.          Ballpoint pens made from recycled plastics 

19.          Clothes made from bamboo

20.          Reusable bread bag

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