Is it just me or has Mother Earth been giving us a big F*CK YOU lately? Between the hurricanes, the earthquakes and the fires, it feels as if we are on the verge of imploding. Of course, if you believe in climate change (and if you don’t, really!?! Pull your head out of your ass), we are definitely at a tipping point. It’s so scary that sometimes I feel frozen, completely unsure of what I can even do about helping Mother Earth.
Because let’s be clear — all of these “sudden” changes in weather patterns are a warning sign. And though my first instinct is to crawl under the covers and hide with a good romance novel, we ignore this S.O. S. at our own peril. But trying to figure out the choices for helping Mother Earth is somewhat overwhelming. And really, does one person’s contribution even matter?
YES, it matters. Imagine if every person in the world made just one change that had a positive impact on the environment. It might be something simple like switching out your disposable plastic water bottle for one that’s reusable. Or it might be something bigger like putting in solar panels. Now, imagine if you kept upping the ante, pushing yourself to continually make changes that were helping Mother Earth. Now, that could change the world.
I find the thought of climate change — melting polar ice caps, and no more tigers –to be more than I can bear. So, I have to break it down into simple actions that I can do that are helping Mother Earth. Here are a few of my favorites:
Ditch the Plastic Water Bottle
As an avid water drinker, this is a hard one for me. I’ve switched to a metal SIGG water bottle at home and in the car. They come in a wide array of sizes, shapes and colors.
But it’s hard to always stay away from plastic. Especially when I travel. However, I just read a recent statistic that has strengthened my resolve: By 2050, there will more plastic in the ocean than fish. Talk about scary. So, one of the easy ways of helping Mother Earth is to always travel with your own water bottle. If metal is too heavy, these BPA-free plastic flasks are a great option:
Last, when you find yourself in a situation where you are dying of thirst and you forgot your water bottle, try to buy one that is more planet-friendly. Like the ones by Just Water, 82% of which are made from renewable resources.
Reusable Grocery Bags
This is really a no brainer. I leave mine in my car so there’s no excuse when I run into the store. In case, you don’t think that bringing your own grocery bag makes a difference, the production of the estimated 1 trillion plastic bags that are used worldwide accounts for approximately 10% of all fossil fuel use. And as we all know, fossil fuels are what create greenhouse gas. So, STOP USING PLASTIC BAGS. Yep, I resorted to shouty capitals. It’s that important. So, stock up on these reusable bags from Baggu. They are super lightweight, and scrunch into a teeny ball so they can easily be stored in your purse or jacket pocket.
Clean with Green
If you haven’t already read my post on why you should buy recycled TP, read it now. Putting the kibosh on wiping your ass with virgin forests is one of the best things that you can do for helping Mother Earth. While you are at it, switch to recycled paper towels and kleenex as well. Except when you have the flu or really bad allergies. On those days, the Kleenex with the aloe really does feel better on the nose.
In my grandmother’s day, most of the household cleaning was done with water, vinegar, backing soda and sweat. Today, company’s add bleach (horrible for the ocean) and antibacterial elements (thought to be at the root of these new “drug resistant” viruses) to their cleaning products to manipulate us into thinking that they are more effective. They aren’t. I switched to green cleaners 4 years ago and I can tell you with certainty that they work as well, if not better, than their chemical counterparts. To figure out which ones are best, here is the link to EWG’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning. They break every product down and give it an easy to understand score from A to F.
Other Ways to Go Green
In case, you need some more ideas of ways to go green….
- Shop Local: Check out your local farmer’s market. The food is fresher; it’s typically grown without pesticides which is better for your health, and not a lot of gas has been used to truck the food to you. All good.
- Recycle Your Hair: You grow about 395 inches of hair in your lifetime. Most of which ends up in landfills. But a company called Green Circle is using your hair trimmings to make “hair booms” that help to sop up oil spills around the world. Totally cool, right?. So, talk your hair salon into joining Green Circle Salons.
- Buy Products Made From Old Water Bottles: Bogobrush makes biodegradable toothbrushes from old plastic. I love the idea of my old water bottles keeping my teeth clean. And what about working out in recycled plastic? Both Teeki and Core Girlfriend make great workout tights made from recycled water bottles. This is the kind of technology that makes me hopeful.
To end, I will leave you with a quote that got me inspired:
“If we all thought, I am just one person and I can make a difference, so much would be done.”