Officially, Earth Day is April 22nd. But what if we committed right now to honoring Mother Earth every day?
If you’re like me, you already recycle, use reusable cloth bags at the grocery, and drink out of a glass water bottle. Starting now, though, I’m challenging myself to do even more. In honor of Earth Day, I’m going to look at each item I touch and think about its future. Will you join me?
Here are three tips we could all enact to make a positive impact on Mother Earth:
- Skip the straw. According to the Plastic Pollution Coalition, more than 500 million plastic straws are used and discarded EACH DAY—just in the United States alone. The majority can’t be recycled, take hundreds of years to break down, and end up in our oceans. So what can you do? Next time you dine out or pick up a to-go beverage, simply say, “No straw, please.” Even better, print out these cards and leave one with your bill, asking the business to serve straws only upon request. If you must use a straw, there are many reusable ones on the market that you can carry with you, wash, and then reuse. Check out this stainless steel straw.
- Pack a container. While more and more restaurants are using biodegradable containers, most still use Styrofoam or other non-biodegradable options. If you’re prone to having leftovers when you eat out, bring a small reusable container with you. These nesting containers are a great option.
- Only buy clothes you need. Often, people buy a lot of cheap clothes, wear them a few times, and then replace them with the latest style. Instead, buy good quality clothes—in only the quantity you need—and take good care of them. If you think you’re in the clear because you donate clothes to Goodwill, think again. Five percent of all clothing donations end up in landfills, according to this article in Huffington Post.