As most of you know, Earth Day is April 22nd. Each year as Earth Day rolls around, I notice the sense of camaraderie that takes place within the community…every one pitching in to help create a cleaner planet. This year, I encourage everyone to join the “going green” movement.
We all lead busy lives, but I want to share with you 7 easy and routine ways you can help the planet and become one step closer to being environmentally friendly consumers.
1. Conserve energy. It sounds cliché, but it’s true! Turning off or dimming the lights, unplugging your cell phone charger, powering down your MacBook when you aren’t using it. All of these are simple things that we can do to be more energy efficient.
2. Eco-bag it. Forget using plastic bags. Invest in a durable cloth shopping bag that can be reused for each shopping trip. Ladies…don’t worry. They make fashionable bags that go with every outfit.
3. Reuse and recycle. Invest in a filtered water bottle. Don’t throw away that plastic! Many neighborhoods and department stores participate in recycle programs that make it easy to recycle plastics, such as bottles and bags, and even earn a profit from it. Some places also deduct money off your bill for reusing bags. FACT: Plastic can be reused to make clothing and even detergent bottles, and new plastic products produced from recycled materials uses 2/3 less energy than what’s required to make plastic products from raw materials (earth911.com)
4. Got email? Opt for e-billing to reduce paper waste. This simple gesture could save the 1 million trees used each year for junk mail!
5. Bike more. Drive less. Walking or biking is the best alternative to getting where you need to go, and it is great exercise. If you have to drive, drive smarter by carpooling and planning out your errands ahead of time. Ease up on that gas pedal! Driving slower may not save you time, but it does save you money and reduce your carbon footprint.
6. Go meatless. According to the Environmental Working Group, if every American cut out meat and cheese for one day a week it would be the same as taking 7.6 million cars off the road. Eliminating these items from your diet helps the environment and is healthier for you. There are several tasty alternatives to meat, such as eggplant, mushrooms, and tofu. Give it a try!
7. Use natural cleaners. Household items, such as vinegar, work just as well as cleaners that you buy at the grocery store, and they transmit fewer chemicals in the air. This makes them better for the health of your entire household.
Just imagine the difference we could make by changing our small everyday habits!
Although Earth Day is a once-a-year event, shouldn’t every day be like Earth Day? Looking at the bigger picture, contributing to the community should happen year round. Research organizations that are making positive strides, and get involved! Check out Liberty Tax’s Community Outreach page to see the great things we are doing!