Mother Earth. What else can we say other than we owe her a lot? And yet each day there are signs that our footprints are having a direct impact on her health, and not in a good way. It’s time for us to think about ways we can minimize our bad habits and their negative effects on the earth. In fact, there are plenty of ways we can give back to the planet, and we’ve got some great ideas.
Read on for some earthly inspiration.
Make Your Home Green
Our humble abodes should be our kingdoms. They should be where we go to relax at the end of a long, hard day. It can be hard to enjoy it, though, if we know that we are ultimately contributing to environmental issues. Consider things like adding solar panels. Inspect your attic and insulation to prevent energy waste. Go for energy-saving power strips. Ensure your doors and windows are the height of energy efficiency, even adding double or triple glazed windows when necessary. Make sure your carpeting doesn’t contain toxic chemicals that are bad for you and bad for the environment. Choose landscaping options that require less water, like succulents and other drought-resistant plants. You could even take up composting and mulching to avoid pesticides that cause damage to Mother Earth.
Watch Your Own Personal Habits
Once you’ve got your own home in shape, you can turn your attention to your own habits. Are you using things like paper cups, plastic spoons, or paper plates in the name of convenience. We get that everyone is busy but if we all were to cut out things like this, our planet would be in better shape. Also, be sure to watch how much water you’re using. People in places like California are accustomed to hearing about this due to droughts but, really, everyone should watch their water usage. Take shorter showers and empty half-drunk water glasses into pet bowls or plants. All of these little things can add up to a big impact.
Support Green Companies
As consumers, we generally have choices in where we spend our money. So if you’ve got two places that sell similar products, make sure to support the ones that are making a difference. Some companies give a donation any time a purchase is made. For example, when you buy one of Slippa’s round towels, they’ll donate to ocean cleanup or planting trees. Now that’s a purchase you’ll love and can feel good about at the same time.
Be More Efficient With Your Energy
We’ve touched on this a bit already but the importance can’t be overstated. And the nice thing is it can be as simple as having all of your family members remember to turn off lights and appliances that aren’t being used, or setting them up on timers that handle that. When making purchases, do your due diligence on which appliances, light bulbs, and other appliances are the most energy-efficient. When looking for washers, dryers, fridges, and more, make sure to look for a minimum of four stars.
Lead the Charge at School
Once you’ve “greenified” your humble abode, turn to the schools. Little kids don’t think about waste or recycling and the like, so it’s our job as adults to lead by example. Assign someone at your school (or do it yourself) to help the kids build a garden, send home hopeful tips on eliminating waste, and implement a proper recycling program. Anyone with kids knows they are prone to wasting food, so trying to at least reduce this is a step in the right direction.
Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle
And don’t just do this because Jack Johnson sings about it, although we love that he does. Reducing waste with common sense approaches to preparing your food is great, as is composting. Reuse things like electronics and, when they are past this point, recycle them. Reuse other household items, clothes, and sports and other equipment. Your youngest child might not complain as much about as those “hand-me-downs” if you couch it in him or her helping Mother Earth. And consult the EPA’s current list on what is recyclable and how to do so for maximum efficiency in this area. Many of us are often surprised to find out that things like sandwich bags are not actually recyclable (which makes buying a reusable kind even better!).
Mother Earth gives us so much on a daily basis. Make a few of these relatively small tweaks in your life and you’ll be paying her back and then some.