The first Earth day occurred 40 years ago today, April 22, 1970. It consisted of more than 20 million demonstrators. It was inspired by a speech by Gaylord Nelson in 1969 that stirred the waters and caused the end result. Backed by a theory that every human being residing on the earth deserved the right to live in a natural and healthy environment, the first Earth day occurred.
Today it is believed that almost 1.5 billion people will do over 31 billion “acts of green” all over the world. What can you do to be one of those 31 billion you many ask? There are a number of things. Below are listed just a few
• Build a compost bin. - Building a Compost Pile not only is a wonderful way to recycle, it also gives you a wonderful addition to your garden, rich beautiful soil. Click the link above for easy instructions on creating your own.
• Recycle – glass, aluminum, plastic, etc - Recycling is a process of taking something at the end of its useful life and using all or part of it to make another product. The link above leads one to the Recyclo-pedia which covers how to recycle just about anything you can think of.
• Purchase reusable water bottles - The Effects of water bottles on the enviroment may seem trivial yet it is far from it. Roughly 1.5 million tons of plastic are expended in the bottling of 89 billion liters of water each year. The link above goes deeper into this and helps one to understand the need to convert to a reusable water bottle.
• Reusing office supplies - From ink cartridges, to envelopes, cellphones, computers and more many items used everyday in the office can be recycled. OPRA (Office Products Recycling Association) is just one of the organizations that deal with this need. Dealing in used cell phones and ink cartridges, they give the consumer the opportunity to not only sell their old items yet also buy items that have been refurbished.
• Use Cloth diapers - The average newborn will be changed aproximately 70-80 times each week. That equals 280-320 diapers a month. 80% of people today use disposable diapers. That is roughly 18 billion diapers making 82000 tons of plastic and 1.3 million tons of wood pulp (250,000 trees) each year. Although some brands have worked to help the disposable be more biodegradable, most diapers take literally hundreds of years to degrade. Added to this is the fact that neatly tucked into each "package" is its own little "present". Truly this could become a post all on its own. Go Diapers and Cotton Babies are a couple sites where a variety of cloth diapers can be found. Believe me they are nothing like they used to be.
• Plant a Community Garden - a wonderful way to teach children the lessons of conservation as well as community spirit. The American Community Garden Association is a wonderful place to start. Grants and funding can also be found to help aid in the financial aid of such endeavors.
• Consider Living Natural- a simple return to natural and organic living can help tremendously. Not only is it good for the enviroment yet it also is a healthy choice. Natural Living For Women is a nice place to start.
Earth Day should be every day. We as humans casually go along each day too often not thinking about the result of the actions we choose. The waste we incur when so many go without. The needless acts of neglect we display in the name of “convenience”. The acts of abuse we inflict to this wondrous planet that we call our home. Before you say, “this is not me” stop and think about a common day in your life. How long is your shower each day? Do you conserve water? When you turn on the light each morning what kind of light bulb illuminates your room? Is it energy efficient? When you prepare your morning breakfast do you recycle the egg shells and coffee grounds? When you grab that bottle of water is it in a reusable bottle or a plastic one? The list could go on and on. It is the little things that will add up eventually. It is the little things that combined together as one can make the most difference.
Today as you continue through your day and on, think about the footprint you may be leaving on this great planet of ours and what you can do differently to help make it a better place. Not just for yourself but for all those who reside on it as well as all who will. Happy Earth Day.