3 Unique & Effective Ways to Go Green
Happy Earth Day everyone!
Earth Day is great because it puts the environment in the forefront of our minds. For one day, instagram is filled with beautiful nature pictures and everyone talks about "conserving water" or "walking instead of driving". While those are great tips, they're a little "been there, done that." Here are three tips that will help save the animals, ourselves, and our planet.
1) Reduce Animal Consumption
Animal agriculture is the number one cause of climate change. People talk about how greenhouse gas emissions are caused by transportation, but animal agriculture accounts for 18% of total greenhouse gas emissions, which is more than all transportation combined. Animal agriculture is also seriously devastating to the environment because it takes a lot of natural resources like water and feed to get an animal large enough to eat. 2,500 gallons of water is needed to produce 1lb of meat. I'm guessing that most Americans eat a lot more that 1lb of meat in a week. I'm not saying to go vegan, but consider reducing the amount of animal products that you consume both internally and externally. If you want more information you can watch Cowspiracy on Netflix or you can look at more facts here.
2) Stop Using Microbeads
Microbeads are in everything from toothpaste to face cleansers and hand soaps. They're touted as an exfoliant, but they are so much worse. They are actually these little plastic beads that can't be filtered out by our sewer systems. They end up in the oceans where they absorb pollutants. Then they're eaten by fish and the toxins are magnified as you go higher up the food chain (similarly to how mercury accumulates in large fish). Microbeads are seriously so unnecessary and so devastating to the environment. Companies are supposed to start phasing them out, but if you want to dispose of them yourself, make sure you throw them away and don't empty them down any drain.
3) Stop Using Plastic Bags
When you're grocery shopping, try bringing your own bags instead of having them bag your items in plastic ones. It's a lot better for the environment because plastic never decomposes and in the ocean, plastic bags look like jellyfish so sea turtles eat them and die. Also, if you're in Hawaii or some other city/state with a plastic bag ban, be aware that some places (ahem walmart) will give you thicker plastic bags and say they're "reusable." It's just their way to get around the law and is actually way worse for the environment because it takes more resources to produce and takes longer to break down.
These are all really easy ways to go green for life. It is so easy to stop using microbeads and plastic bags and by doing those two things, you are already making a huge difference. Try educate yourself on the environmental impact of animal agriculture. Even if you decide to still eat meat (I am very much an omnivore still), at least you know the impact you have on the environment. By going meatless one day of the week, you're saving thousands of gallons of water and are making a larger difference than you'd ever know. Let me know how you go green in your life in the comments!