HAPPY EARTH DAY!
April 22nd is Earth Day. Actually every day is Earth day, we just pretend it isn’t. I’m a big fan of conservation and cleanup. Try to do your part. If you’re not a part of the solution, you’re in cahoots with the problem.
What Can You Do?
Don’t make it complicated. Here are a few simple things you can do all year long to help conserve energy and cut down on waste.
Recycle. Can’t stress this enough. Start with your grocery bags. If you’re a plastic person, you probably bring those bags home and stuff them in a box for future use, or worse, you trash them. Especially the “wet” ones. Cut that out. Bags piling up in your pantry? Just take them back to the store. If you really want to help, carry a set of cloth bags to your store when you shop. Personally, I recycle my grocery bags as lunch bags for work.
Conserve Electricity. Yeah I said it. I know a lot of people (like me) are trapped in technology and heavily depend upon the mighty nuke juice of our friendly power plants, but you can still cut back. Start small. Turn off lights when you leave a room. Small task. Big energy saver. Do you automatically turn on the TV when you get up, come home from work or school? Pity. Everybody needs a moment to collect their thoughts. The TV will work against that. Try this. When you come home, don’t turn on your radio, TV or computer (yeah you heard me) for at least 30 minutes. Sit, cook, or handle some non-electrical task that requires some attention. I like to sit and talk with my wife when I get home about our day. No media. Just us. You’ll be surprised how much those devices interfere with your relationship.
Save Water. Now don’t get crazy and stop bathing. Just a few commitments in this area. First, don’t run the water while you’re brushing your teeth. That’s a big waste. All you’re doing is creating a show for yourself while your scrub your ivories. For bigger tasks, like laundry and dishes, only buy energy efficient appliances. Talk to the store salesperson and ask for an explanation on how to select the right devices for your habits. If they sound a bit uninformed, politely leave and find someone who does. Last resort? Internet.
Drive Less. Tough one here. However, with a bit of planning and communication with friends and co-workers, you can probably find better ways to get around. Check to see if there’s a neighborhood carpool heading in the direction of your job. Also, how close are you to a commuter train or an express bus route? Going out to grab some lunch? Don’t drive. Find an eatery in walking distance. Nothing digests a good meal like a brisk walk after eating. Want a free Earth Day treat? Walk into your neighborhood Starbucks with a travel mug, and get a free cup o’ joe.
This is a short list, people. Real conservatives will give you all the info you need to become a true earthling. The key is to start small and think big. Happy Birthday, 3rd Rock from the Little Star.