Want to help the planet? Let’s make this week count. Get started on the road to sustainability with small changes, and if you’re already there, take one extra step. For one week, try to do one thing a day in your home or office to help heal the planet.
Here are some fun ideas!
See if you can shower in less time than you normally would. Aim for five to ten minutes if you’re not there yet. For bonus points, turn off the tap as you brush your teeth in the morning and evening. According to the EPA, this saves eight gallons, more than 200 gallons of water per month.
Use only reusable items where you can. Packing lunch? Use containers and bags that are reusable. Use a metal or plastic straw that’s not disposable. Carry everything in cloth or other bags and use cloth napkins and refillable bottles. Choosing cloth over paper napkins can save up to five grams of greenhouse gas emissions per year.
Try not to throw things away today! In fact, for bonus points, start a bag of donations so that used clothing and other items don’t end up in the dump.
Bring your plant to work day! It adds life-giving oxygen and pulls carbon dioxide from the air. Some are especially good at this, including spider plants, peace lilies, and philodendron. Plus they have calming effects and will bring your space to life!
Make it a meatless Thursday! Consider whole grains like a delicious quinoa bowl or pasta dish. Try to keep the meat out of three meals. The UN reported that raising animals for food creates more greenhouse gases than all the cars and trucks on Earth.
Does your company use energy efficient heating and cooling? If not, maybe suggest a change. It will save them money too. At home, you can also help. In 2009, almost 90 percent of American homes had air conditioners that accounted for about six percent of the U.S.’s residential energy use – and 100 million tons of carbon dioxide sent into the air we breathe.
Try to walk or bike to your destinations today. If that’s not possible, try clustering as many trips into one as possible to avoid generating more carbon dioxide. Driving your car is one of the worst generators of greenhouse gases, so switching to another vehicle is ideal. You could walk, bike, or take public transportation.
Ah, the day of rest! It’s a great time to read up on the climate and what steps are being taken. Educate your children about the state of the environment and our role in keeping it healthy for generations to come. This is a good day to research sustainable companies to see where your buying impact can do the most good!
It’s also a good day to plan for the week ahead. You’ve seen how small changes aren’t so small after all. What are some things you can do each day to make a difference?