Did you know? April 22nd 2016 marks the 46th year of Earth Day!
You might think that protecting our Earth and our climate is just too big of a task to take on by yourself. Well, you're right. We all need to pitch in! But, if we all make a few small adjustments to our daily lives, that will yield some big results for the planet.
If you're ready to make some small changes that will make a HUGE difference in the world that we live in - check out the list of our tips below!
That's right! Plant a tree... or better yet, plant two! Trees are one of the easiest ways for all ages to make a big difference in the overall health of the planet. Why trees? Tress actively help to combat climate change! They absorb excess harmful CO2 and other pollutants, along with helping to filter out particulates from the air. They're a total breath of fresh air.
Each year, we throw billions of pounds of food away, which usually ends up in our landfills. One great way to reduce what is going into the landfill, and also put it to good use is to compost! Composting is a biological process in which naturally occurring microorganisms, insects and bacteria break down your organic scraps. Leaves, grass clippings, and certain types of kitchen scraps can be turned into a type of soil-like product called compost. It's a great form of recycling, and an easy way to return much needed nutrients back to the soil.
Cords, cables, broken chargers, that old keyboard you spilled juice on, and that dusty old TV in the basement. I hope you aren't planning on throwing that stuff in your household garbage! All of these items should be responsibly recycled, as they often contain large amounts of hazardous chemicals which can leach into groundwater supplies or our air. The problem though, is that only around 20-25% of this electronic waste is, in fact, properly recycled. Many recycle depots take these products, and drop boxes for small peripherals can be found at many electronic stores.
Yes, that Spring cleaning needs to get done, but there are ways to do it while still keeping the Earth in mind. Simple things such as using natural source cleaners, using biodegradable materials and bags, and keeping a closer eye on your water consumption and runoff can make a big difference. For tasks like washing the car, or scrubbing out that dirty garbage can, its often worth it to use a service or station for these as water consumption and collection is not typically an issue. Garbage can cleaning services have become much more popular in recent years. These services typically come right to your home, and clean your dirty bin on site using up to 75% less water than if you were to do it yourself. Additionally, many of these companies recapture most or all of the water used in the cleaning process, which is then properly recycled. No more scrubbing the can yourself, and it's done in in an environmentally responsible way! Win/win!
Want to get more nutrients in your food and put less pollutants in the air? It's as easy as shopping for your produce locally wherever possible. Produce starts losing nutritional value as soon as it is harvested - as much as a 1/3 of the nutrients can be lost in the first 3 days after picking. Since most grocery stores and supermarkets have produce brought in, usually from other countries, food can often sit in transit for up to 7 days. Of course, this additional transportation time means a lot of extra pollution being put into the atmosphere.
Junk mail is not only a huge inconvenience, but has a pretty big impact on the environment as well. Nearly 100 million tress are chopped down in the US to make the paper needed for junk mail.. resulting in a whopping 4 million tons of the pamphlets, flyers, and cards. In fact, this year alone, you're going to receive around 41 pounds of junk mail - nearly half of which you'll toss in the trash without even opening. So what can you do? You simply have to ask for less. In Canada, here are some great ways you can reduce how much junk mail you receive. In the USA, here's how to do it.
Got a great tip that you didn't see mentioned above? We'd love to hear it, just leave it in the comments!