Earth Day, celebrated globally on April 22nd, is a good time to commit to protecting the environment. Here are ten ways you can join the party.
- Adjust your lighting. Replace traditional incandescent light bulbs with energy efficient options. Light emitting diodes (LEDs), compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and halogen incandescent bulbs use less energy and last longer than traditional options. Alternative bulbs cost more but save you money, time and energy later.
- Recycle. Join the 100 million American who recycle aluminum, glass bottles and paper each day. Call your trash company to see if they pick up recyclables. If not, contact your county government to inquire if they have a recycling collection site. Set a bin beside your kitchen trash can to make recycling a habit.
- Save Paper. Requesting e-bills can save millions of trees each year. Reduce the amount of junk mail you receive by not signing up for catalogs. Use both sides of paper when printing. Reuse gift bags, wrapping paper, tissue paper and newspaper. Buy recycled paper products to reduce paper waste.
- Kick the bottle. Millions of plastic water bottles end up in landfills and dumps. Invest in a tap water filter for your home. Purchase a reusable water bottle to take your water with you on the go.
- Plug leaks. Banish water waste by replacing leaky faucets, taking shorter showers and turning off the water while brushing your teeth. Washing full loads of laundry and using shorter dishwasher cycles will also help conserve water. Harvest rainwater for plants, your organic garden or for lawn care.
- Plant a tree. Trees produce oxygen, improve water quality and prevent soil erosion. Trees also filter pollution from the air and provide valuable shade. Planting one tree improves the world.
- Ditch the car. Reduce your carbon footprint by carpooling, walking or using mass transit whenever the opportunity arises. Fewer cars on the road can decrease air pollution.
- Reuse it. Americans use billions of plastic bags each year. Reduce waste by packing lunches and snacks in reusable containers. Purchase canvas shopping totes for groceries.
- Inspire. Encourage others to celebrate Earth Day by creating a pledge board at work, place of worship or school. Leave ideas for things others can do to help protect the earth. Invite your friends to Earth Day fairs.
- Eat local. Locally-grown organic food is not only healthier but has a lighter impact on the earth. Look for foods grown within your state at the supermarket. Or, shop at farmer’s markets to find local foods. Organic farming keeps pesticides out of the environment and out of your body. Purchasing organically grown food is a commitment to nourishing your body while protecting the earth.
Imagine how healthy the Earth could be if we celebrated every day. Adopt a few of these tips for the entire year. Make taking care of the environment a regular part of your lifestyle.