This planet is our home, but are we aware enough of this fact? The climate crisis is here, and it must be taken as seriously as possible. Sure, you may think that it’s not your fault that the world is already 1.2 degrees Celsius warmer than preindustrial times or that more and more greenhouse gas emissions threaten the ecosystem, but it doesn’t even have to be – environmental damage affects us all.
Without further ado, here’re some simple yet effective ways to protect the environment and become more nature-friendly:
Did you know that around 12 million hectares of forest are destroyed annually, which is why greenhouse gas emissions (about 25 per cent are due to deforestation and other land-use changes) continue to have a massive impact on the climate? But you can make a change. Be a part of the ecosystem restoration and consider tree-planting. You don’t have to plant hundreds of trees, of course (although you’re welcome to) – think about planting a tree in your own garden, your grandparents one, or, why not, in the nearest park or forest. Trees may take longer to grow, but it’s worth the effort.
You’ve already got wind of the three “R’s”: reduce, reuse, recycle. But the planet would also benefit from the fourth (and maybe the most understated) “R”: refuse. You heard it right; refusing to consume more than you actually need is an actionable solution for change. And don’t be too hard on yourself – excessive consumption is part of this society; that’s what most people do. Consumerism is, without any doubt, a bad habit, but fortunately, you can transform it into a good one. Start with baby steps and think wisely about what you need when shopping: is that latest gadget that promises to make miracles indispensable? Does your kid really need that hundredth toy? You should know that most nonessential purchases end up either in the trash or in some forgotten drawers. Not only will refusing to buy unneeded items reduce costs but also the impact on the environment – fewer natural materials will be used to manufacture such items.
Use fewer chemicals
You already know that some chemicals can be harmful to the body, but so to the environment. Maybe it’s hard to avoid them, but not impossible. You can start by simply analysing the ingredient list on the back of the purchased products. Whether they’re garden care, beauty and hygiene items, or household cleaners, it’s crucial to read their label before buying them. Common chemicals found in all-purpose cleaners include ammonia, sodium hypochlorite, and ethylene glycol, while in garden care products, you’re likely to find arsenic, kerosene, and insecticides.
Although these toxic substances have suggestive names, they’re not so recognisable. And even if you want to avoid them, you can still buy products that contain harmful chemicals. In this case, it would be helpful to get informed about the different chemicals that can threaten your life and the environment. Consider seeking the advice of an online chemistry tutor to learn more about these dangerous items and what you can do to avoid them. Online tutoring has gained much popularity lately, and it’s no wonder – you can learn anything and anytime from the comfort of your couch.
Minimise food wastage
The volume of food waste is getting higher and higher, and it seems uncontrollable. But why do people waste so much? One possible answer is that they buy more than they actually consume. Sure, you may think you’re not wasting, but remember those dinner leftovers that go to the garbage every week? Luckily, there’re various ways to eliminate food waste. You can make a well-organised grocery list and buy what you need or know you consume. Consider planning your meals for a couple of days or a week, depending on how often you’re going shopping, and note down only the necessary ingredients. Another solution would be to adopt a habit of eating leftovers. Knowing that almost a billion hungry people out there could be fed with the global wasted food will surely change your mind.
Anyway, if you’re not into eating the same meal twice, we totally get it. Take composting scraps into account because the nutrients recycled from the composite pit enrich the soil. See? Nothing is wasted. Also, food banks are more than happy to accept food. This way, you donate to people in need and save the planet at the same time.
We already mentioned that carbon dioxide emissions are accountable for climate change, but did you know that most of them are produced by cars? So, if you’re among those who cannot live with their vehicle, it’s time to rethink transportation. Consider limiting car use and opt for alternative means, such as public transport, biking, and even walking. If your office is, let’s say, only 5 kilometres away, you can get there without a car. Cycling for example, is good for your health and a little more exercise will do no harm.
You can also reduce gas emissions by using electric vehicles. They gained in popularity lately because, fortunately, more and more people have become aware of the importance of conserving the environment. After all, you live only on this planet (for now…), so let’s make it a welcoming home.
Water is vital – without it, this planet would be dead. So, it’s crucial to minimise water wastage to save energy. Maybe you already know this, but a substantial amount of energy is used to pump water to your house. Therefore, it would be helpful to shorten that long-waited bath and turn off the tap while brushing your teeth. Also, it would be helpful to install a low-flow toilet, as it will lower your water bill while increasing your home value due to its modern feel.
And if you’re a garden owner, you can collect and store rainwater for plant-watering. Not only is it cheaper, but it’s also the cleanest.
With this in mind, we hope our insights will convince you to be more environmentally-friendly and take good care of your planet because it’s your only home.