For Vanessa King and her son Matti, living lightly runs in the family.
Inspired by Vanessa’s mother Nancy, they have made a series of small, sustainable changes in their daily lives to help reduce their carbon footprint.
They grow their own vegetables, keep chickens at home and buy most of their food from local farmers’ markets. To reduce their water use, they keep a tank and save laundry water to use in the garden.
Vanessa says she owes her desire to make a difference to her mum.
“Ever since I was little I’ve been aware of the impact of our lifestyle choices; I’ve tried to reduce that impact so it works for my pocket and the environment.”
“It’s important to her and it’s important to me.”
Matti is fast taking after mum and granny, scrutinising every product for palm oil when the family is shopping.
In October, Vanessa and Matti are taking more steps to live lightly; they’re signing up to Kaipatiki Project’s Sustainable Whānau Challenge. They’ll start having shorter four-minute showers and will borrow a HEAT kit from an Auckland Council library to find out what energy savings they can make.