For today’s “5 Things Friday” I’m going to change it up in honor of the 46th Earth Day and share 5 things you can do to make everyday Earth Day.
- Eat less meat. I know it sounds tough but even reducing meat for one day and participating in Meatless Monday can help. Besides it being good for your health, if everyone went meatless on Monday it would have the same impact on climate change as taking 273 million vehicles off the road for an entire year.
- Use natural cleaning products. There are so many chemicals in products so it’s great for your health but it’s also good for the environment. These days you can even DIY cleaning products. Like with food, read the ingredients. A lot of “green cleaners” use the term but still have harmful chemicals in them. For Earth Day I purchased this natural laundry detergent by The Simply Co. They are offering free shipping if you use code EARTHDAY2016 today only (4/22/16).
- Buy Local: food & products. It reduces the environmental impact and gives back to the local economy. There are so many farmer markets (throughout California especially) that support the local economy and provide affordable organic fruits and vegetables.
- Recycle, reduce and reuse. This one is pretty obvious but I see it so often, people throwing items that can be recycled in the trash. It’s so easy with recycle bins in homes, at apartment complexes, at work and in many public places. Just make the extra effort. Recycling saves landfill space, conserves resource, saves energy and saves water. Reuse items that you can. I know we often reuse shopping bags for trash or to carry items. I do my best to bring my own bags to the store (still working on this one). Reduce wherever you can. If you are trying to lose weight, it helps to buy only non-processed foods. They have less packaging and are much better for you. For those food scraps that are compostable start a compost bin.
- Walk, ride your bike or take public transportation. If you live or work in a walkable area try to walk more than drive. Plan the extra time into your day to save on car emissions. For longer distances ride your bike. In addition to being good for the environment, it’s good for your health. If you live outside the city, take public transportation. It saves you time and you’re able to get back some time by working from the train/BART/etc. My dad even started his own sustainable transportation company, River City Rickshaw, last year to help the environment, parking issues and reduce traffic.
Climate change is so real, we’re seeing it more everyday. Nothing happens if we just recognize the issue, we must make changes. There are a lot of things you can do to help the environment. I know people like what’s easy and I get that. I definitely have moments that convenience is much easier than doing what’s right. I eat meat and don’t always use the most ethical products but I’m trying to be more mindful of it and SLOWLY (I emphasize that because I have a way to go, I’m honestly a lightweight pack rat haha) moving towards a minimalism. There are so many great blogs on minimalism. I like The Minimalists and Becoming Minimalist but just Google it. Even more extreme is the Zero Waste Lifestyle, Lauren Singer of Trash is for Tossers is the creator of The Simply Co. laundry detergent that I purchased today.
Everyone is different, so there isn’t one right way to make changes. Even small changes help. It’s not just for the environment, it’s for your quality of life and sanity.
ENJOY and have a great weekend!