Within these last couple of years, the term “climate change” has been thrown around constantly. For awhile there were people who genuinely believed that “global warming” was just a made up topic. Today there seems to be too much evidence to deny climate change; the global temperatures are rising, ice glaciers are melting off, sea levels are rising, and the list goes on and on. It is also sad to say that all of this is happening due to our human activity. As we see all of the horrific events that are happening all over the world, how can we, ordinary people, help save this immense planet? Most of us are not super wealthy famous celebrities or influencers. So how can WE make a difference? There are easy, simple, and affordable ways to save this Earth. Even if they are the smallest of actions, it can lead to a chain reaction.
Many of us grew up being told this in school, but how many of us actually followed through with it? What is surprising to me is that some people think that particular items are recyclable when in fact they are not. So take a quick look at this list.
2. Sell or Donate your clothes
The average American will throw out approximately 80 pounds worth of clothing in one year. Imagine everyone at your job, school, and neighborhood throwing out that much clothing. Now picture 26 billion pounds of clothing that will end up in a landfill. It does not have to. Today, there are several apps and stores that are willing to buy your clothes; such apps like Poshmark, Offerup, LetGo. You are helping the environment and making some money at the same time. It’s a win win.
3. Avoid plastic!
I am sure you have heard time and time again about how we MUST save the turtles. Needless to say, turtles are the only animals we are trying to protect. Whenever we throw away our plastic items, they all end up in landfill. Even worse, they get put into our beautiful oceans bringing harm to not only our turtles, but all of the living organisms in the ecosystem.
In order to diminish that, avoid plastic. Instead of using several plastic bags at your grocery store, use a reusable bag. You can buy them from most stores for about 99 cents or some even give them out for free if you just ask for one. Instead of buying all those water plastic bottles, but yourself a cute reusable water bottle.
Take it to school, work, or to bed. Some coffee and smoothie places actually give you a discount whenever you bring your own reusable cup. Once again, saving the planet while also keeping your bank account happy.
4. Change your lightbulbs!
Make sure that all of your lightbulbs in your home are energy efficient. These lights bulbs use 75% less energy, they last longer, and produce less heat than the traditional light bulbs. Since these light bulbs use less energy your electricity bill and cut down on your cooling costs.
An important action to take is to make sure you turn off your lights every time you leave the room or when you’re not using them. Whether you leave for an hour or just two minutes, every second we do not burn our fossil fuels we are helping our planet.
5. Cut back on your shower time!
After a long day of work or school, many of us look forward to our long hot shower. Maybe next time spend 10 minutes less? When you do this it reduces the energy that is needed to process and deliver the water, which reduces pollution and the burning of fossil fuels. By just spending 5 to 10 minutes less in the shower, we are allowing there to be more water supply for our future generations.
6. See trash? Pick it up.
There was one day where I was leaving Kroger with my groceries when I witnessed something truly sad. A mother was walking with her daughter and they both had their own Starbucks drink. The girl said “Mommy I’m done with my drink!” The mother then proceeded to tell her daughter that she was also done and to just throw it by the bush. They both did. Two plastic Starbucks cups with plastic straws in them are now sitting there in a bush. I had two options here. Either leave it there to ruin our environment even more and just scold at the lady OR just pick it up and place it in the recycle bin. It took me less than 30 seconds to do so.
Sometimes you see trash on the ground that’s not even far from a disposable bin. Next time you do, why don’t you pick it up? It will not take you more than a minute to do so. A small act of kindness can create such a difference.
7. Research, Get Involved & Spread Awareness
There are many ways to help this earth. Research how you can lend a hand with many other simple actions! Volunteer in clean up communities. There are groups that revolve themselves around cleaning up the litter and pollution just in Atlanta such as Habitat for Humanity International, Trees Atlanta, Keep Atlanta Beautiful, and the list goes on. You can always find places closer to you that are making a change. If there’s a rare case in which there is not, make your own group! Google is your best friend to figuring out all of these things.
If you are 18 and registered to vote, make sure you know who you are voting for. Some candidates do not stand to help our planet, yet some seem to have a plan. Make sure you are informed! You are electing people who have the ability to create a massive change.
Whether we are super rich or just your average person, our actions will influence others to also take the action to help our dying planet. Climate change is occurring because of us, so we must be the ones to create the change for the better. Whether it’s recycling a plastic water bottle or donating $100,000 for the recovery of the Amazon Rainforest; everything counts. In order to cause a positive change, we must begin somewhere. Let us all work together to save the beautiful home we call Earth.