12 Tips for a Greener Ramadan

– Caring for People and Planet

 Prepared by Barnet Multi Faith Forum, Environment and Sustainability Sub-Group

 1- Reduce Plastic Use

  • Remember to bring your own bags when shopping to minimize the need for plastic bags.
  • Consider switching to plastic-free alternatives such as soap bars and refillable containers for your toiletries.
  • Choose foods that have minimal packaging to reduce plastic waste.
  • Instead of using plastic cutlery, bring your own reusable cups, bottles, plates, and utensils for Iftar gatherings.
  • Encourage sustainability among children by rewarding them for participating in these practices with non-plastic, recyclable toys and books.

2- Get Active and Keep Healthy

  • Choose to walk to the mosque for prayer.
  • Embrace cycling or walking whenever possible to reduce car use and pollution.
  • Use public transport at least once a week and leave the car at home, to reduce carbon emissions and promote cleaner air.

3 – Reduce Food Waste 

  • Adjust your fridge temperature to between 0-5°C to extend the freshness of food.
  • Embrace creativity with leftovers—freeze them or share with those in need.
  • Donate unwanted food to food banks or utilize apps like OLIO or Too Good To Go to minimize waste effectively.
  • Shop with a plan in mind, paying close attention to the use-by dates of fresh food.
  • Maintain your fridge; clean and use clear storage containers for easy visibility of contents, reducing the chance of food being forgotten.
  • Consider going meat-free, for example, during Suhoor, to lessen environmental impact.

4 – Compost & Recycle

  • Start composting organic waste in your garden to decrease the amount of waste sent to landfills. Please see how easy to compost with a wormery!
  • Boost your recycling efforts and inquire about local services for food waste collection.
  • If you have access to any type of dry biomass, including greenfield waste and waste materials, consider producing biochar or providing them to nearby biochar production facilities.
  • Please place any leaves that fall onto your frontage, driveway, or garden in your green garden waste bin if you’re signed up for the service. Or turn fallen leaves into leaf mould to enrich your garden soil naturally.

5 – Dairy Alternatives to Reduce Carbon Footprint

  • Consider oat, coconut, or hazelnut milk for your tea, coffee, cereal, and porridge.
  • Choose healthier items like honey, dates, and raisins instead of processed sugar.
  • Enjoy fruits over ice cream and use veggie spreads or olive oil instead of butter.
  • Experiment with herbs, spices, rose water, and natural additives in your cooking for inventive greener seasoning and toppings.

6 – Water Conservation

  • Filter tap water for drinking to reduce the reliance on plastic water bottles.
  • Use water carefully during Wudhu and Ghusl to prevent wastage.
  • Practice mindfulness in water usage while washing, cleaning, and boiling.
  • Report water blockages in public spaces to local authorities for timely intervention.

7 – Energy & Environment

  • Embrace natural light and ventilation whenever possible.
  • Be mindful of electricity usage, especially between Iftar and Suhoor. Ensure TVs, computers, and other devices are not left on standby or plugged in when fully charged.
  • Participate in charity and community clean-ups. Consider picking up litter on your way to the mosque or during walks in local parks.
  • Report any faulty streetlights and lampposts in pedestrian areas to the appropriate authorities or local contractors.
  • Enhance your home’s sustainability by adopting green energy solutions, such as installing solar panels, switching to renewable energy sources, and upgrading to more efficient appliances as much as you can.

8 – Welcome Wildlife

  • Participate in local initiatives focused on the protection of plants and animals.
  • Set up bird feeders and leave a few peanuts for the squirrels in your garden.
  • When visiting local parks, consider feeding the ducks with peas and sweetcorn instead of bread, which is harmful to their health and the water.
  • Contribute to biodiversity by planting trees, bushes, and creating habitats.
  • Start or join a neighbourhood association or “friends of the local parks” group to engage in planting and conservation efforts in your area.
  • Enhance your garden with a pond or water feature to support fish, frogs, and attract dragonflies.
  • For those with limited space, consider placing a simple water-filled bowl on a balcony or window ledge to attract wildlife.
  • Planting bee-friendly flower seeds in gardens or even in a pot on a windowsill can help our bees survive. Fewer bees to pollinate our crops could mean less food for us as well. You might consider Becoming a Beekeeper!

9 – Eco-Friendly Home & Gifts

  • Use sustainable materials for decorations.
  • Create handmade gifts and cards and use minimal wrapping.
  • Select suppliers committed to eco-friendly practices.
  • Utilize wood specially in construction, as it effectively stores carbon within buildings and other infrastructure.

 10 – Sustainability Personal Decisions

  • Reduce air travel as much as possible and explore alternative modes of transportation to minimize your carbon footprint.
  • Review your finances and make responsible decisions with your money, business, and investments to ensure the sustainability and social impact of your finances.
  • Hold onto your smartphone; resist buying new ones just to follow new trends.
  • Contribute to charity by calculating your business’s carbon footprint and purchasing voluntary greenhouse gas removal credits to offset emissions. Please be mindful of including scope 3 emissions in your calculations, which refer to the emissions a company is responsible for beyond its own operations.

11 – Support Local Produce

  • Purchase from local farmers/markets to lower your carbon footprint.
  • Support small businesses within your local community by choosing their goods and services.
  • Grow your own food at a community garden and share your knowledge with others.

12 – Community Engagement

  • Discuss and support a culture of sustainability within the community. Inspire others by sharing your efforts, contributions, and lifestyle changes you have made.
  • Organize or suggest community events such as “Green Fridays” during Ramadan, featuring sustainability-focused khutbahs and speeches. These events can highlight the importance of Sustainable Development Goals at individual, community, and broader levels.
  • Raise awareness about the significance of reducing emissions, removing historic emissions, and adopting sustainable practices.
  • Keep track of and publicly share the number of waste bin bags produced each day during Ramadan to encourage community members to engage in waste reduction and support the reduction of food waste.
Please remember that these are suggestions, and you are not expected to implement all of them. However, taking every step where possible can make a significant difference. Please Share. Ramadan Mubarak!

Cutting Methane – Environmental Sub Group

Methane emissions are four times more sensitive to climate change than the world’s top scientists had estimated as recently as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) report in February. According to Nottingham Trent University Singapore’s Simon Redfern, the professor of Earth sciences behind this new research, the atmosphere is changing as the world heats up.

Read extracts from report and interesting observations

BMFForum HEAL THE WORLD Environmental Conference

Monday 14th June saw the successful launch of the first Environmental Conference by the BMFF Environmental Sub-group, and it was a great success. A series of interviews and presentations highlighted local Barnet issues and projects. It was a captivating and enjoyable evening promoting the essential work that is developing in this critical area.

The conference took place on Zoom and we recorded it. You can watch the full event here:

WARNING: Be prepared for the hot weather

You will be aware that forecast weather conditions over the coming days reach the trigger thresholds for Heat Health Level 3 actions.

Attached is the information from the Met Office and the Heat Health Alert for this week for your information.

Also please find here a link to the Heatwave Plan for England (easy read version)

In line with the London Framework a teleconference was held at 17:00 and at the direction of LLAG, the London Local Authority Gold Director and three specific actions are required from all Boroughs to mitigate the potential impacts and confirm readiness.

I am sure many of your agencies will have received the same information and been requested to disseminate information with regards to the rising temperatures during this week and to ensure we reach as many people and businesses as possible with these important health alerts, especially those who will be particularly vulnerable to extremes of heat during this period.

Please ensure you circulate the health alerts below to your communities, staff and others who will need to know:

Stay out of the heat:

  • keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm
  • if you have to go out in the heat, walk in the shade, apply sunscreen and wear a hat and light scarf
  • avoid extreme physical exertion
  • wear light, loose-fitting cotton clothes

Cool yourself down:

  • have plenty of cold drinks, and avoid excess alcohol, caffeine and hot drinks
  • NEW for 2019 – Specifically highlight the Refill London – https://refill.org.uk/refill-london/
  • eat cold foods, particularly salads and fruit with a high water content
  • take a cool shower, bath or body wash
  • sprinkle water over the skin or clothing, or keep a damp cloth on the back of your neck Keep your environment cool:
  • keeping your living space cool is especially important for infants, the elderly or those with chronic health conditions or who can’t look after themselves
  • place a thermometer in your main living room and bedroom to keep a check on the temperature
  • keep windows that are exposed to the sun closed during the day, and open windows at night when the temperature has dropped
  • close curtains that receive morning or afternoon sun, however, care should be taken with metal blinds and dark curtains, as these can absorb heat – consider replacing or putting reflective material in-between them and the window space
  • turn off non-essential lights and electrical equipment – they generate heat
  • keep indoor plants and bowls of water in the house as evaporation helps cool the air
  • if possible, move into a cooler room, especially for sleeping
  • electric fans may provide some relief, if temperatures are below 35°

Look out for others:

  • keep an eye on isolated, elderly, ill or very young people and make sure they are able to keep cool
  • ensure that babies, children or elderly people are not left alone in stationary cars
  • check on elderly or sick neighbours, family or friends every day during a heatwave
  • be alert and call a doctor or social services if someone is unwell or further help is needed If you have a health problem:
  • keep medicines below 25 °C or in the refrigerator (read the storage instructions on the packaging)
  • seek medical advice if you are suffering from a chronic medical condition or taking multiple medications If you or others feel unwell:
  • try to get help if you feel dizzy, weak, anxious or have intense thirst and headache; move to a cool place as soon as possible and measure your body temperature
  • drink some water or fruit juice to rehydrate
  • rest immediately in a cool place if you have painful muscular spasms (particularly in the legs, arms or abdomen, in many cases after sustained exercise during very hot weather), and drink oral rehydration solutions containing electrolytes.
  • medical attention is needed if heat cramps last more than one hour
  • consult your doctor if you feel unusual symptoms or if symptoms persist

Bulb Planting Film produced by students from Middlesex University for Holocaust Memorial Day 2019



For Holocaust Memorial Day 2019, we are releasing a short film in collaboration with Big Grange Local, Barnet Multi-faith Forum, and the residents of East Finchley. BA Film students from Middlesex recently produced the short film about a community bulb planting day, as part of a Barnet Council initiative to remember every one of the 1.5 million children who died in the Holocaust. The event brought together people from multiple different faiths to plant a memorial garden dedicated to those who have lost their lives as a result of religious persecution. The film features Amina Qadi, a young woman from the Somali Bravenese community who has been very active in multi-faith dialogue in the area around East Finchley. In 2013, the Somali Bravenese community centre was burnt down, an act of hate crime. The local Jewish community responded by inviting them to pray at the local synagogue. In an act of solidarity, Amina dedicates the bulb planting to the 11 people who lost their lives in the shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh on 27th October 2018. Production Coordinators: Dr. Helen Bendon, Nayomi Roshini, Media Department, Middlesex University. Production Team: Nikoleta Slezakova, Cloe Peker, Sara Veiga, Bruna Ventura, Patrycja Lisowska, Dariush Asadi, Randy Mankoto Interviewees: Amina Qadi, Natan Levy, Julia Hines, Esmond Rosen and Leo Smith Middlesex University 2019