15 Ways you can Help the Earth this Earth Day
Curious about what can be done on Earth Day? You’re not alone.
Earth Day is known as a day to give something back to the Earth we all depend on. But what can be done on Earth Day that can really make a change? You may be surprised! Even small changes can make a big difference.
This Earth Day is the perfect time to reflect on what we can do for our Earth. I’ve listed some of my favorite ways to celebrate Earth Day below. Are you ready?
What is Earth Day?
Earth Day rolls around every April 22. For people who celebrate it, it’s a day to spend a little extra time, thought, and care in how we treat our Earth. Many neighborhoods and workplaces hold events to educate and inspire communities to take steps towards a healthier planet.
It’s not fun to think about, but it’s important to remember that we need our planet more than it needs us. Earth Day is an important reminder of how fragile our world is and how important it is to take care of it. While every day is a great day to take care of the Earth, April 22 is a way to remind ourselves and others of how simple it can be to live in a planet-friendly way.
What Can Be Done on Earth Day?
What can be done on Earth Day? Plenty! Here are 15 ideas to get you started:
1. Plant Something: Make the world greener by planting something. If you have the space, trees help clear the air, produce oxygen, and will even improve property value. Consider starting a vegetable garden to help reduce reliance on pesticide-heavy conventionally farmed foods. Lavender, black eyed susans, and bee balm are beautiful ways to attract and support your local bee population. If you don’t have much room to plant, don’t worry: do what you can with the space you have. Every bit makes a difference. Here’s a great video on how to plant vegetables in small spaces.
2. Create a Recycling Plan: Do you have a recycling plan in place? If not, now is a great time to start one! Research the recycling options in your community. Decide which products you choose to recycle and designate a spot in your home to collect and sort. If you already have a recycling plan, Earth Day is a great time to see how you can expand upon it.
3. Find a New Way to Travel: Do your part to reduce transportation pollution by finding a new way to get around town. If you live close to where you need to go, consider walking or biking. If you need to travel a bit further, look into your public transportation and carpooling options. Earth Day can be a great time to rally people in your neighborhood or workplace to create a carpool program, so don’t be afraid to get others involved.
4. Switch to a Reusable Water Bottle: If you use bottled water, make the switch from disposable plastic bottles to a reusable option. The average American throws away over 160 bottles of water a year. Switching to a reusable bottle keeps all that plastic from sitting in a landfill. It’s also easier on your wallet. Many of the top bottled water brands actually contain municipal water, so often there’s not much of a difference in quality between what you’re getting in a bottle and what you get from your tap or your own filtration system.
5. Investigate Responsible Skin Care: Conventionally manufactured skin care products contain ingredients that are both bad for you and rough on the environment. Making the switch to natural products keeps dangerous ingredients out of the water supply while being healthier for you and your skin. It’s a win/win!
6. Contact Your Representative: Is there an environmental issue that you’re concerned about? Make Earth Day the day you call your representative about it. Whether the issue is local or national, taking the time to call, email, or write a letter can make a real difference in how the issue is addressed. Don’t be afraid to speak out.
7. Invest in Reusable Bags: One estimate puts the number of disposable plastic bags used by Americans at 100 billion per year. Can you imagine how much space that takes up in landfills? Do your part this Earth Day by starting a collection of reusable bags. I like to stash mine in my car so I don’t forget them when I go shopping
8. Support Businesses that Use Earth-Friendly Packaging: Packaging waste can really add up. The same can be said of the environmental impact that comes from irresponsible packaging manufacturing. Use this Earth Day as an opportunity to research and support businesses that use Earth-friendly packaging methods. Take it a step further by learning more about how to recycle packaging waste.
9. Adopt a Highway: Or a road, or a park, or any other public place that tends to collect litter. Grab a couple of trash bags and a few friends and get to cleaning. Earth Day is also a great time to research organizations in your communities who already organize clean-up days. If you find one, get involved. If not, consider starting one of your own.
10. Rethink Your Shower: A small change in your bathing habits can make a big difference in the amount of water you use. A soak in the tub is a relaxing indulgence that’s great to enjoy every once in a while, but filling a tub everyday uses a lot of water. Consider swapping out a few baths for water-saving showers instead. If you already choose showers over baths, consider reducing your shower time. Depending on your shower, cutting back by two minutes can save as much as ten gallons of water. Do this every day and the savings really add up.
11. Volunteer With an Earth-Friendly Organization: Ask local organizations what can be done on Earth Day and you’ll likely receive some great answers. Find a group of people near you who are taking steps to make the world a greener place. It’s a great way to meet new people while making a real change in the world around you.
12. Stop by a Farmer’s Market: Did you know that the food in American grocery stores travels an average of 1500 miles before its purchased? This uses a lot of fuel, which in turn creates pollution. Cut back on your impact by choosing local produce instead. A farmer’s market is a great way to support local business, enjoy responsibly produced produce, and reduce the miles your food travels.
13. Unsubscribe from Junk Mail: Sick of seeing all those catalogs and flyers? They’re not doing much good for the environment either. Set aside some time this Earth Day to unsubscribe from any mailings you’re not interested in. This is also a great time to set up a recycling plan for any unnecessary mail you miss.
14. Look for Energy Drainers: Many common electronics and appliances continue to drain power, even if they’re turned off. Conserve energy and lower your electricity bill by seeking them out this Earth Day. Electronics chargers, cable boxes, video game consoles, and standby coffee makers are common energy drainers, though there are others. Reduce their impact by unplugging them at night, or plugging several into a surge protector that can be turned off with a flip of a switch.
15. Enjoy Nature With Your Kids: One of the best ways you can take care of the environment is to instill a love of nature into younger generations. Enjoy some time outdoors with your children this Earth Day. Go on a hike, visit a park, plant a tree, play some frisbee, or get involved with an Earth Day celebration in your community.
What Do You Do on Earth Day?
What can be done on Earth Day? Do you have any activities to add to the list? Let everyone know about them in the comments below!