We’re often so annoyed when something breaks that our first reaction can be to immediately replace it with something shiny and new. But everything we buy adds to our carbon footprint because energy is needed to make, transport and sell it. Despite our decreasing reliance on fossil fuels, most energy generation still produces greenhouse gases.
This ‘embodied energy’ can’t be recovered. Once it’s been used to make our stuff, that’s it. However, we can reduce the impact of embodied energy on our carbon footprint by making things last as long as possible. Many, if not most of our items can be repaired and be given a new lease of life.
Repairing something actually makes you feel good too – we have a complex relationship with our stuff, and coaxing something back to life is immensely satisfying.
Cambridgeshire continues to see a proliferation in Repair Cafés, community events where experienced volunteers can advise you on repairs and help you out. For a complete list of upcoming Repair Cafes in the Cambs area, see Circular Cambridge .
The Restart Project is great for repair movement news and resources.
For local repair businesses, a quick internet search usually pulls something up, or try our Circular Directory
The internet is a goldmine for repair tips and advice. Simply doing an internet search on your particular item can help reveal whether others have had the same problem and whether spares are available. There are countless YouTube repair clips (some easier to follow than others) and Videojug can be good . iFixit is a fantastic repair resource, and grades its repairs by difficulty.
Remember to ask around your community too, in person or on social media like Nextdoor.co.uk. There’s bound to be someone, or someone who knows someone, with the skills you’re looking for, or who can recommend somewhere you can take your item to.