“The environment is where we all meet; where all have a mutual interest; it is the one thing all of us share.” – Lady Bird Johnson
Earth Day was first celebrated on April 22, 1970, which means that Earth Day is turning the big 5-0 this year! What started as a grassroots movement by the late U.S. Senator John McConnell in reaction to a 1969 oil spill off the coast of California is now a worldwide event celebrated in more than 190 countries.
A 50th celebration means it’s time to pull out all the stops for our favorite planet. Every party needs a theme, and this year’s Earth Day theme is climate action.
Here are a few ways you can get involved.
Waste Not, Want Not
“I only get angry when I see waste. When I see people throwing away things we could use.” – Mother Teresa
The food we eat and the food we waste contributes to more than a quarter of the world’s greenhouse gases. Now, we do live in Texas, and no one is telling you to give up your grill—but simply adding one or two meatless meals to your family’s weekly menu can have a big impact on your food footprint.
Visit local farmers markets to reduce the greenhouse emissions produced in transporting food. Don’t forget to take your reusable bags to the market with you. In addition, make a conscious effort to reduce food waste. If you happen to overbuy, share your bounty with a neighbor.
Change Begins at Home
“What’s the use of a fine house if you haven’t got a tolerable planet to put it on?”
– Henry David Thoreau
It’s easy to write off climate change as an issue for governments to handle, but there are some simple things you can do to impact our environment:
- Reduce water usage by planting native plants which can take the heat of a Texas summer. You can find lists of bee-friendly plants online. Host a party to share plant cuttings with your neighbors.
- Raise your thermostat a couple of degrees this summer.
- Use Earth-friendly cleaning products.
- Host a clothing, book, or toy exchange with your friends.
“Many hands make light work.” – John Heywood
We’re all in this together, so it makes sense to get your workplace involved.
- Organize a recycling competition among co-workers.
- Volunteer together.
- Reduce unnecessary paperwork.
- If you haven’t already instituted a personal ban on disposable cups and straws, this is the time to do so!
Plan a Clean Up
“Clean up, clean up, everybody, everywhere. Clean up, clean up, everybody do your share.” – Barney, the purple dinosaur
Plan a community or neighborhood cleanup. You can even use the Earth Challenge 2020 app to register your cleanup in what is being called the “world’s largest citizen science initiative.”