Earth Day is the day set aside for appreciating the earth’s environment and raising awareness of the issues that pose a threat to it. The first Earth Day ever was on April 22, 1970, and it was introduced by Senator Gaylord Nelson, a United States senator, to bring environmental issues onto the national political agenda.
Currently, Earth Day is observed in 175 countries. It is solely coordinated by the nonprofit organization, Earth Day Network.
In recognition of Earth Day, here are 5 simple activities for families that will not only help save the environment but help you save so money too.
1. Use reusable water bottles
Based on research, Americans are said to buy more than half a billion bottles of water each week (That’s a very huge number). The issues with bottled water are so many:
- All bottles are made with petroleum;
- About only 27% of the bottles can be recycled, the other 73% end up in landfills;
- Water, which is available from a tap, is moved from the bottling site to the store and ultimately to our houses causing greenhouse gasses along the way;
- The FDA only requires that bottled water is as good as tap water. Based on an NRDC study, it is made clear that there is an estimate that 25% of bottled water is really just tap water.
In order to save some money, have some fun with your family and help the environment, you can simply by a reusable water bottle and fill it up with good tap water. You can make use of a filter if you don’t trust tap water; this is better than buying bottled water.
2. Use reusable plastic bags
Plastic bags that can only be used once are very bad for the environment. Aside from that they are made out from petroleum, they have really low recycling ratWorldwatchatch Inst. estimates that about 100 Billion are used and discarded in the US alone, at the cost of 12 million barrels of oil.
Many of those plastic bags go to landfills, while some flow into the ocean and probably end up joining the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which a floating island of trash estimated at twice the size of Texas where plastic particles are more abundant than plankton.
These days, you can buy reusable plastic bags in most retail stores.
3. Unplug the Vampires
Many power cords are energy suckers, even while they are off, either because the appliance remains on stand-by waiting to be powered on with a remote control controller or an adapter, disconnected from the device they are supposed to be charging such as your mobile phones or laptop computers, continues to zap energy.
This is referred to as the “vampire” or “phantom energy,” and can account for about 10% of your residential energy bill. Research by the EPA shows that an average US family spends $100 a year powering devices that are off. Calculating on a national basis; this standby power accounts for more than $10 billion in annual energy costs.
Making use of a power strip or unplugging unused appliances or power cords can help you reduce your energy bill as well as save the environment.
4. Eat like a vegetarian once a week
In farming, fossil fuels are required to make fertilizer, power up tractors, process and mobilize food. Many calories of grains are required to make one calorie of meat; on the other hand, animals and manure produce greenhouse gases like methane and nitrous oxide.
As a result, the production of meat leads to emitting more greenhouse gases than growing crops.
Environmental Defense estimates that, “If every American skipped one meal of chicken per week and substituted a vegetarian meal, the carbon dioxide savings would be the same as taking more than half a million cars off of U.S. roads.
5. Buy smart
Buying smart does not only help you save some money, it also helps maintain a green environment. Consumerism, the persistent buying and disposing of stuffs, triggers a lot of environmental issues, which includes extraction, manufacturing, packaging, transportation and finally, disposal of goods.
Be sure to limit purchases to the important things you really need, after all, Reduce is the first of the 3R’s:
- Reuse and
The above are very good and inexpensive activities you should engage your family in, on the next Earth Day.
Till Next Time,
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