This year’s Earth Day will see people around the world come together to campaign for the protection of the environment.
Environmentalists everywhere will be marking the day like usual, but this year’s Earth Day is going to be more important than ever, since it’ll see the signing of the Paris climate agreement.
Google Doodle marked the day with a series of pictures celebrating animals and nature.
One thing people won’t be doing, however, is turning their lights off for an hour. That’s Earth Hour, an entirely different awareness-raising event, which is organised by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), rather than the Earth Day Network.
The politicians signing the Paris Agreement at the UN headquarters in New York will be doing their bit, but what can you actually do to help the environment on Earth Day? Here’s some suggestions.
Start carrying a bag for life
Some of us just haven’t got into the habit of carrying a reusable bag yet.
Earth Day is a good day to start using one. Many of these bags also became litter, or ended up in landfill sites, where they take centuries to break down.
Reusing a bag a few times, or buying a sturdier one which will last longer, is a great way to cut down on unnecessary waste.
Cut down on your meat consumption
The meat industry produces huge amounts of harmful emissions, and vital ecosystems around the world are being destroyed at an alarming rate to make room to graze cattle and grow the food they eat.
Start thinking more about your carbon footprint
In an always-connected world, it’s impossible to live without consuming energy. But by just being more aware of your individual impact, you can make small changes to reduce your carbon footprint – by turning off lights when you leave a room, keeping your home insulated, and unplugging unnecessary appliances.
Reuse your plastic bottles
Plastic bottles are the new plastic bags. They’re everywhere, very rarely recycled, and they don’t biodegrade. Buying a reusable bottle and filling it from the tap will not only save you money, it’ll help save the environment.
Plant a tree.