In case you haven’t seen or heard yet, the UN released a climate report a few days ago that essentially concluded as this: unless we start making some big changes soon, the world will suffer some pretty extreme and drastic consequences within the next few decades.
Big changes need to happen, but that doesn’t mean you have to be the only one making them, or that you personally have to invest in solar panels for your entire neighborhood. If a lot of people start making small changes, those seemingly small acts of reduction will add up to create a big change. Here’s a list of seven small things you can do, to help create this big change, and to help save and preserve the only home we currently have .
Finding friends to carpool with, or even taking a little extra time to get where you need to go by taking a form of public transport is another easy way to reduce the amount of carbon emissions being released into the environment. Biking or walking are also good options, and healthy for you too!
2. SAVE WATER
Try not to run a washing machine or a dishwasher unless the machines are completely full! Also, try to take shorter showers, don’t keep the water running while brushing your teeth or hand-dishes– every little bit counts!
3. REDUCE PLASTIC USAGE
You’d be hard-pressed to find any grocery store or corner market these days that doesn’t offer a substitution to regular plastic grocery bags. Investing in reusable shopping bags is easy and cheap– most places sell them for as low as $.99!
Another way to reduce plastic is– yes, it’s true– to stop using plastic straws. Disney’s Animal Kingdom has been using cardboard straws since its park opening, for the safety of the animals in its parks, and of course we’ve all heard about Starbucks beginning to ban their plastics. It may not be ideal, but it’s definitely worth it. Amazon (and plenty other places as well) sell reusable straws made of metal and silicone, in all kinds of sizes and colors, that even come with cleaning brushes, and all for relatively cheap prices (averaging about $6-$15)
4. INVEST IN A REUSABLE WATER BOTTLE…
… and a BRITA water pitcher, or something similar.
Getting a reusable water bottle, and filtering your tap water through a pitcher or a faucet add-on will help with reduction in both the wasting of water and plastic bottles. A BRITA filter may seem a bit pricey, (depending on you definition) but it’s definitely worth it.
Starting your own garden in your yard, or participating in a community garden is a good way to start a new hobby, but also can help strengthen the environment! You can plant flowers and shrubs that are native to your environment, or you can plant your own fruits and veggies– not only will they taste better and fresher than those you’d buy in the store, but in planting your own garden, you help reduce greenhouse gases.
6. EAT LESS MEAT
This one is a little harder for some people, depending on your own health requirements and needs, but eating less meat, whether it’s going full on vegetarian or just cutting meat out of your meals a few days a week is also a super easy way to help out the planet.
And last but not least…
Register to vote, and get informed for every election that is coming up. Research every candidate, find out where they stand on their opinions and plans for climate change, and know who you are supporting and voting for before doing so. I know you’re probably tired of hearing it, but it doesn’t make it any less true– YOUR VOICE MATTERS, and so do your actions. Make sure you are making the best, most informed ones that you can.