culture of bali

12 Mar Eco Up

1. Replace tea light candles in your restaurant or home with your used kitchen oil mixed with a colour of your choice & float in water. You can buy floating wicks from most Chinese suppliers. Candles & tea lights contain palm oil, which is grown on reclaimed orangutan habitats in Indonesia.

2. Stop using individual soaps/ shampoos & lotion for guests and replace with refillable pump containers & natural liquid soaps & shampoos. This will help to reduce waste & packaging. Many hotel soaps contain palm oil, which is grown on reclaimed Orangutan habitats.Blog 18 photo 23. Introduce timers on pond pumps so they are not running for 24 hours daily. Reduce your running costs and your dependence on power generated by fossil fuel.

4. Use energy saving, or even better – LED light bulbs only – available now in warm white also. This will reduce your running costs considerably and your dependence on fossil fuel.

5. Use rechargeable batteries for in-room safety boxes & torches. They are more expensive but will save you money in the long term; disposable batteries are a toxic nightmare in local landfills as they breakdown and leach into the soil.

6. Fix all leaking taps, toilets & swimming pools. Bali actually has a fresh water crisis now, with greater tourist numbers predicted each year, water saving strategies are essential – now more than ever.

7. Set your AC to 21 or 22 degrees Celsius. Hotel rooms are notoriously too cold; this is unnecessary and wasteful of energy. It will also save you money.

8. Use swept leaves & grass clippings on the gardens to cover bare soil and around trees and plants. This helps to reduce watering and evaporation loss, while bringing nutrients back to the garden.

9. Pay your staff fair wages including annual holiday pay, sick pay & overtime when they work on Nyepi and Galungan holidays. Your staff is the key to your guests’ happiness during their stay with you. Everyone deserves a good wage and a chance to get ahead.

10.Stop selling water in bottles & provide a place where guests can refill their bottles daily during their stay. This reduces the plague of plastic bottles.

11. Use Natural cleaning products in your housekeeping. All chemicals end up polluting the soil, contaminating your property or someone else’s, polluting the ground water or washed out to rivers & oceans.

12. Work on managing mosquito habitat around your hotel/ Villa/ Losman / home instead of fogging & using mosquito coils. Mosquitoes can only survive where there is stagnant water close by.

13. Use Natural pesticides in the garden and in the rooms. By using pesticides, you are only creating a toxic environment & killing useful insects as well.

14. Manage & dispose of your rubbish properly. Be responsible. Never throw your rubbish in the village ‘got’ or local river. Think about how you can also reduce what you are disposing of so you don’t attract & invite rat & mosquito habitat.

15. Stop burning organic matter such as green grass & plant clippings. Organic matter that is not dry just smolders & produces a lot of smoke, contributing to global warming. Vital nutrients are burnt instead of being returned to improve soil conditions; better to put fresh organic matter back on the soil or in your compost.

16. Stop burning your daily rubbish. Slow burning plastic, releases harmful toxic chemicals into the air that we all breathe, including your guests & children.

17. Improve your environment by: tree planting, adding bird baths, vegetable gardens or make a compost for your organic waste. Bali’s landfill is full of useful organic matter, which is not waste. Bali is so good at recycling, don’t forget Organic matter as a recyclable.

18. Offer local low impact activities to your guests such as: community run activities, walking/ trekking, bike riding, bird watching, snorkeling or diving. Low impact activities are generally less invasive and don’t impact so negatively on the local culture & community of Bali.

19. Try and source products locally to economically support your local community & reduce transport costs.

20. Manage your wastewater & sewage properly. Releasing your untreated sewage into the land, river or ocean is irresponsible and also illegal.

21. Apply for Sustainable Awards and get accreditation where possible. This will highlight & give credibility to your commitment to sustainable tourism, make your staff feel proud and inspire others.

22. Join local organizations that support sustainability, such as Bali Clean & Green Forum, Friends of the National Parks or Greenpeace Indonesia. Connecting with other organizations will strengthen your commitment and bring new friends who are actively helping the environment.

23. Look after your on-site animals – aerate your fishponds with pumps, feed & care for your animals. How many times do you see fish in stagnant hotel ponds, gasping for air on the surface (because they are starving for oxygen)? Feed your dogs & cats well as you would your family- they are the ones reducing rodents and protecting your property.

24. Lastly – Don’t “green wash”: claim to be environmentally friendly when you are not. It is misleading and will only bring negative guest feedback, better to “walk the talk” and keep Bali Clean & Green!

– By Linda vant Hoff