South Africa's leading Eco Store serving our planet since 2002!
With 2016 experiencing the lowest rainfall recorded in South African history and water restrictions implemented nationwide, it is no wonder that there is a growing number of people concerned about the future of our most precious commodity - water.
At Sustainable.co.za, we have turned our focus to providing the latest and most affordable options to save water in your own home. We also have a few tricks up our sleeve for those who are not in a position to buy the goods but still want to be a part of the solution.
First and foremost, you must try to reuse water at home, this can be done in the following ways:
- * Endeavour to buy eco-friendly detergents and soaps so that the water is safe for your garden.
- * Put a small amount of water in your bathroom basin so people can use this to wash their hands.
- * Shower for 5 minutes or less.
- * Leave a bucket in the shower and cover the drain with it so that it collects the excess water.
- * Switch off the shower when washing your hair or body.
- * Fill the kitchen sink with water in the morning and reuse to wash dishes. If it gets cold, take some of it out with a jug and boil it.
- * Try not to flush the toilet too often - if it is yellow, let it mellow (maximum of three uses), if it is brown, flush it down.
- * At the end of the day, the water from the shower, sink and basin can be used in your garden or to fill your cistern.
- * Put a brick or a 2litre bottle of water into your cistern. This will reduce the capacity of the tank and thus use less water.
- * Try not to bath, but if this is all you have, ensure that it is a shallow one and reuse the water as above.
- * Do not top up your pool unless you are using recycled water.
- * Use a pool cover on your pool to prevent evaporation. Please ensure that this is safe for children and animals.
Once you have implemented the above, we have some great options available on our website as listed below:
Grey water consists of bath, shower, bathroom sink and washing machine water. A Grey Water System is made up of a tank that is connected to your outlets that will filter this
water and distribute it when and as the tank fills; it will automatically switch off when the tank is empty. This is a great way to reuse water that would normally go down the drain.
Rain Water Tanks are perfect for collecting rainwater to top up your pool, jacuzzi or water your vegetable / herb garden. All you have to do is connect the drainpipe to the tank to ensure the rainwater travels from your gutters and fills the tank for later use.
We have a wide range of accessories such as leaf filters and more.
Most households do not have a geyser located close to each tap which means it takes time for the hot water to travel through the pipes and arrive at the hot tap. When the hot tap is not in use, the water in the pipes cools down, so the next time you run the hot tap, this cool water needs to be pushed through the pipes before the hot water arrives. This cool water is called redwater and is usually lost down the drain. Save redwater by installing a Redwater Diverter.
If you find that your tap water has started to taste strange or if you want to drink water from a flowing river or spring nearby, consider investing in one of our filtration options. We have a wide range available, included a baby bottle. Have a look here, just click on the title of each product to view more.
As we all know, water is a very precious resource and there is no excuse for wasting a single
drop. Sustainable.co.za is committed to sourcing and supplying a wide range of options for everybody. We pledge to update these products regularly.
As the old saying goes, "Waste not, want not". We are happy to show you how.
Not just another green hype, hemp could replace cotton as one of the main sources of fibre for the textile and paper industry. The incredible efficiency of this crop is partly the reason competing industries in the USA campaigned for its ban in the 1930s. Without getting into the controversies surrounding the legislation of hemp farming, let’s take a look at some of the obvious advantages of hemp as a crop and textile.
Remarkably hemp produces 200 – 250% more fibre per area compared to cotton, using about half the water. Cotton accounts for about 25% of global pesticide use posing various environmental and health hazards. Hemp on the other hand can be cultivated without any use of pesticides or herbicides, in fact it’s known to be effective in suppressing weed due to its thick high growth. In little more than three months, hemp can grow up to four metres high, the bast fibres from the bark gets harvested for textile and the hurd in the core utilised in the paper industry.
Tired of a new garments wearing out after just a couple of washes? Hemp is proven to be three times stronger than cotton. It offers the greatest UV protection of any natural fabric and has excellent breathing properties. In addition, hemp absorbs and dissipates moisture at a greater rate than cotton making it ideal for the coming summer. While not as soft, hemp does improve with wear and after every wash but is best combined with cotton in garments. Naturally, hemp is ideal for bags and backpacks and can be viewed here together with other accessories from Hemporium.
Hemporium is the leading provider of hemp products in South Africa and is on the forefront of hemp research and innovation. Their partnership with the trial farm near Wellington is providing valuable insight on the commercial viability of the crop and is an important stepping stone for cultivation as a sustainable South African commodity. We're proud to now be listing and promoting Hemporium products - an investment in eco-quality that’s proven to stand the test of time.
Well now you can. Christmas is a time for giving and the best investment you can make for your family is to "buy the earth" back.
At Sustainable.co.za, we believe that green living should be easy and add to your lifestyle rather than detract. Our little elves spend all their time ensuring that we not only have an expansive range of high quality, cost effective products available, but that there is something for everyone.
With warm Summer evenings, festive cheer filling the streets, and long, lazy days surrounded by family and loved ones, we certainly are lucky to spend this joyous day in the Southern Hemisphere.
The Gift of Christmas
We understand that Christmas gift shopping can be stressful with long queues, packed shopping centres and low or no stock available, it is not a very relaxing thought at a time of year when we need it most. Online shopping greatly alleviates this stress. Browse through our range at any time of day, ask advice and get everything delivered right to your doorstep from the comfort of your own home.
When it comes to gifts, we first and foremost, recommend upcycling. Recycling unwanted items is a great way to preserve the earth. Get the kids involved and make it a holiday project. These kind of gifts are the most thoughtful and full of love. There are plenty of videos on Youtube with regard to upcycled gifts - what are you waiting for? Another alternative would be to refurbish an unwanted present from previous years. Yes, we give you fill permission to do this. Rather pass it on to someone you love than letting it end up in the rubbish bin or stuck at the far reaches of your cupboard.
If you don't have the time this year, we have a wide range of offers available at our webstore. Great green gifts for you and your loved ones.
A garden can be a true reflection of the love inside the house, especially at Christmas time. We have a wide range of Christmas Lights available for you to decorate in style. We also have an extensive variety of solar garden lighting available for you to achieve the ambiance you want outdoors. Our Mooni Turners are lovely little lamps that look like tea light candles and are perfect for outdoor table decoration. For those concerned about security this season, we have some great options available in our security light range.
Grey Water Recycling and Rain Water Storage Systems are a fantastic tool to save water this Summer. Water your garden with excess water from your washing machine and basin that would normally go to waste. Our Rain Water Tanks are easy to put together and will certainly be a conversation starter.
Another great accessory to improve your green fingers this season are our compostable garden pots. Nurture your seedlings in these containers and then simply plant them directly into your garden when they are ready. The pots will decompose and provide an added source of nutrients to help your plants along.
Save water this Summer with our range of Water Saving Shower Heads. We have some great shower heads available, easy on your pocket and best of all, easy on water usage. Try out the Marigold that comes with 4 different settings and rated as a favourite in a recent review. Our pallet furniture is a big win this month. Rustic and hand-made with love, the Towel Rail and Shelf will make a lovely addition to any bathroom. Save on electricity with our laundry alternatives. The Sputnik Wonder Washing Machine and Spindel Laundry Driers will save you plenty of electricity and water. They are also portable and can be taken with on road trips during the holidays. Add the Biowash Laundry Ball to the mix and cut down greatly on detergents. Our eco-friendly, unbleached toilet paper is another great alternative. We think it's so great, that we use it in the toilets at our offices in The Green Building.
The Kitchen is the heart of a home and our brand new pallet Kitchen Island will make a great centre piece for this room. Add a small kitchen composter for your food scraps and you are well on your way. Light up your kitchen with LED lights and save electricity and money, particularly with our Lamp for Life range that boasts a 25 year warranty. Yup, you read right - 25 years! Start recycling this Christmas with our colourful, easy-to-use recycling bins. If you are looking to spend less time washing the dishes, check out our eco-packaging range, particularly our plate and utensils pack.
We are here to assist with all factors of Green Living; Pool Pumps, Energy Efficient and Solar Fridges/ Freezers, Eco Cookers, Solar Cookers, Gas Ovens and Water Heaters, not to mention Solar Power Systems and Solar Water Heating Kits. Camping enthusiast? No problem, we have portable Solar Power Kits, Water Purifiers, Solar Battery Chargers and Powerbanks for those who have access to AC charging. Need to know how much power you are using? Our Efergy Electricity Monitors are ideal and available at great prices. Geyser Blankets, Timers, Pipe Insulation and more, we even keep regular stock of Instant Water Heaters at our offices. As you can see, we have left no stone unturned. Love to Braai? Eco-logs and firelighters are the way to go.
We consider our customers to be family and all of us at Team Sustainable.co.za are more than happy to help you "buy back the earth" this Christmas, we are only a phone call away. Pop in at our office in Cape Town for a cup of coffee and a chat and browse some of the products you can buy off our website. We have even signed up with Snapscan and Zapper to make payment that much easier.
We look forward to celebrating the season with you and really making the end of 2016 count!
Wishing you a prosperous and safe festive season.
...when South Africans celebrate the diverse cultural heritage that makes up a "rainbow nation". It is the day to celebrate the contribution of all South Africans to the building of South Africa(sic) —Lowry 21:1995
Why Heritage Day?
Heritage Day is arguably South Africa's favourite holiday because it is otherwise known as National Braai Day. South Africa's favourite past time!
Before delving into tips and tricks on how to make your Braai Day better than ever this year, let's have a look at why the 24 September is National Heritage Day.
Pre-1995, 24 September was know as Shaka Day in ode to the well-known Zulu King, Shaka Zulu. Shaka managed to unite all the tumultuous Zulu tribes into one cohesive nation. When the updated Public Holidays Bill was presented to the new parliament in 1995, 24th September was not listed. After the IFP objected to this, the IFP and parliament compromised with National Heritage Day. A day for all South Africans to celebrate their rich and diverse cultural history and traditions.
With braaing being a South African tradition across all cultures, many celebrate by stoking up a fire in the backyard, surrounded by friends and family.
This Braai Day, do something a little extra for you and your environment by investing in eco-friendly products. Not only will they bring peace of mind, but they will improve your Braai Day enormously.
Sunny weather, swimming and good food goes hand in hand with National Braai Day. Fire up the braai with our green eco-lighters and eco-logs. We even have a solar radio to provide some great local musical radio shows.
If you are spending your day out, our water purifiers will ensure that you have fresh water when you need it. Swimming and wet clothes? No problem. Our portable dryer is affordable and easy to use. We also have a great powerbank that provides power for cellphones, tablets, cameras and laptops too.
Save on doing the dishes and keeping the earth clean by getting some biodegradeable crockery and cutlery for the day. No more wasteful polystyrene products this year. Invest in your garden by throwing your salad off-cuts into our very convenient indoor kitchen composter. A great source of nutrients for your vegetable garden! Recycle, recycle, recycle with our fab range of recycling bins. Need to boil potatoes? Save
electricity with our large hotbag. Simply bring the pot to a boil, switch the stove off and place the pot into the hotbag. The bag insulates the heat and food can be left to cook without wasting power. It also serves as a heating tray to keep food warm for longer.
When dusk settles in, keep the celebrations going by lighting up the evening with ambient solar.
lighting and some traditional story-telling. And feel free to send us pictures! We would love to see how you celebrate your culture. Let's include some green consciousness into our own traditions and cultures from this year on to ensure that future generations have many more years to celebrate this wonderful day.
Sustainable.co.za will once again be sponsoring the 3rd Annual SA Eco Film Festival. The festival will be returning to Cape Town and surrounds on March 31st – April 3rd this year. Other sponsors include leading Western Cape ECO Friendly business partners Ballo, Reliance and Group 1 Nissan showcasing the 100% electric Nissan Leaf. With engaging and thought provoking program content, Q&A’s, audience interaction, guest speakers and more, this year the SA Eco Film Festival is gearing up to create an ever bigger impact than ever before. Sponsors are getting involved to create some exciting competitions and events, such as Electric Vehicle day. Continue reading
Valentine’s doesn’t need to be steeped in consumerism. A thoughtful gift with both your loved one and the environment in mind is actually quite simple! We explore a few sustainable options for gifts, outings and even creative pursuits…
Green gift ideas
A personalized gift makes for a much more lasting expression of love, and best of all it doesn’t have to cost much at all. Don’t forget the simple power of a handwritten card – best of all you can source cards made locally from recycled paper for your special message, or get creative and make your own!
If you have a knack for crafts, a lovely idea is to take a photo of yourself and your loved one and create your own one-of-a-kind jigsaw puzzle! Simply glue the photo to a piece of cardboard which you can up-cycle yourself, the board from the back of an old exam pad is perfect. Continue reading
This year, we want to give back to you to say thank you for your loyal support. Join us in our weekly Festive Eco Challenge and you could be walking away with a product of your choice. Make your festive season just that little more special this year with your very own eco-gift. Continue reading
Rocking the Daisies, one of South Africa’s greenest music festivals, will be taking place during the first weekend of October at the Cloof Wine Estate in Darling. The four-day festival has a great line-up, including 7th Son, Alice Phoebe Lou, Jeremy Loops, The Kooks and Monark, among others. Here at Sustainable.co.za, we’re just as excited about the green as we are about the music scene!
Green Measures at Rocking the Daisies
There are a number of ecological initiatives in place at Rocking the Daisies. No bottled water is sold at the event, push taps are used to reduce water wastage, and grey water is recycled. Food-ware and cleaning products are biodegradable, and all paper marketing material is printed on recycled stock. LED lighting is used wherever possible, and on-site generators run off bio-diesel. There are also bus shuttles provided, and festival-goers are encouraged to walk, cycle or carpool wherever possible. This year the festival will be hosting official initiatives including #RTDSPRINGCLEAN which facilitates the re-homing of unwanted clothing to those in need, and Walk/Cycle The Daisies, a two day hike prior to the festival which aims to promote positive environmental action. Continue reading
With Heritage Day on the horizon, Capetonians across the city are no doubt eagerly anticipating their first braai of the season. However, not all of us have access to private braai facilities. Thankfully, we do have access to beautiful surroundings and public braais designed to help us locals make the most of the weather, the holidays, and our unique heritage. These are a few of Cape Town’s favourite braai spots that are open to the public this Heritage Day. Take your pick and happy braaing!
Maiden’s Cove: This beachside braai spot is situated on the coast between Clifton and Glen beaches, and offers striking views of both the ocean and the mountain. Other features include a swimming friendly tidal pool, large boulders for sun tanning, a grassy area on which to sit, and numerous braai places available to the public. This spot is open to the public all year round, and entrance is free.
Little Bay: This popular braai spot located in Blouberg is ideal for active families who enjoy kite flying, kite surfing and wind surfing. The braai spots are situated on a lawn, which means braai goers are privy to braai food sans seasoning by sand on windy days. This spot is open to the public all year round, and entrance is free.Wynberg Park: This park features a number of braai and picnic spots, ample greenery, a river and a well-equipped children’s play area. The park is located in Wynberg, open from 8am-6pm daily all year round and entrance is free.
Meulwater, Paarl: Enjoy unrivaled scenery at the Meulwater Wildflower Reserve in Paarl while making use of one of the reserve’s many braai areas. The reserve also offers various hiking trails available to the public. Entrance is free.(Image source: http://photos3.meetupstatic.com/)Zandvlei, Muizenberg: Known for its sprawling lawns, beautiful lake and popular braai spots, Zandvlei is open to the public in summer between 8am and 6pm. Entrance is free. (Image source: http://www.sa-venues.com/)PAID ENTRANCETokai Forest: A fantastic spot for the kids to run around while the adults take it slow, Tokai Forest boasts a large number of braai spots beneath the shade of the forest’s pine trees. The area is open from 7am - 6pm (October to March) and 8am - 5pm (April to September). Cost to enter: R20 per adult, R10 per child and R20 per car.
Oudekraal: Situated between Camps Bay and Llandudno beaches, this beautiful beach boasts relatively private braai areas offering seating and a view. Entrance costs R35 per adult and R15 per child. Open from 7am – 6pm (October to March) and 7am - 6pm (May to September).
Buffels Bay and Bordjiesdrif in Cape Point: Both of these spots are located within the Cape Point Nature Reserve. They also both offer access to beaches, tidal pools, and grass covered lawns. Entrance is R110 for adults and R55 for children and students. The reserve is open from 6am – 6pm (October to March) and 7am - 5pm (April to September).Krismis Camp, Paarl Mountain Nature Reserve: Enjoy surroundings of fynbos, boulders and olive trees at the Krismis Camp Mountain Nature Reserve in Paarl. Entrance costs R29 per car, R8 per person on weekends and public holidays, and is free on weekdays. (Image source: https://farm3.staticflickr.com/)
Eerste Steen, Melkbosstrand: Eerste Steen is situated within the Blaauwberg Conservation Area. The spot boasts striking views of Table Mountain and ample opportunity to practice water sports. Alcohol is prohibited. The area is open from 8am – 7pm (November – April) and 8am – 5pm (May – October). Entrance costs R13 per person, R6.50 for pensioners, and R18 per car.
Preekstoel & Kraalbaai, West Coast National Park: Arguably two of the most widely loved braai spots in the Western Cape, both Preekstoel and Kraalbaai are located within the West Coast National Park and boast braai facilities overlooking the Langebaan lagoon. Entrance is R40 per adult and R30 per child. (Image source: https://c2.staticflickr.com/)
Millers Point, Simon’s Town: A braai spot on the beach known for being sheltered from the wind, Miller’s Point is a firm favourite amongst Cape Town locals. The area also boasts a boat launching slipway, tidal pool and allows for the use of gas and portable braais. Entrance fee is minimal and area is open between 8am and 6pm daily. (Image source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/)Don’t forget that while braaing may be a wonderful way to relax and enjoy the outdoors, it can be dangerous. Fires can start in seconds and spread just as fast, so be sure to never leave your fire unattended. Pay extra attention to your fire on warm, dry, windy days as these present the highest risk for veld fires. Keeping a large bucket of water next to your braai is advisable in case of an emergency. Remember, pets, children, alcohol and even the weather can all present an increased risk of trouble around an open fire. Also take care not to litter while enjoying braaing – especially in areas of nature conservation. Consider using eco-friendly logs and fire lighters out of respect for the environment, and make sure to leave your braai location the same way you found it.
Make this Braai Day even more memorable. Enter our Heritage Day competition and stand a chance to win an EcoZoom Versa Wood & Charcoal Burner and more!
View the competition prizes and eco-friendly braai products below.
In celebration of Women’s Day, we caught up with some of the awesome ladies from the Sustainable.co.za team, Angela Lee-Wright, Sian Kleyn, and Megan Brown, to ask them a couple of questions about their careers in the exciting, and fast accelerating, alternative energy industry. Here’s what they had to say… Continue reading