April 22 is Earth Day! We all live on one (small) planet. Seriously, Earth is a small planet for it’s population of ~7.2 billion people (Mar 26, 2014) and growing. Humanity’s teeming masses are a heavy burden for Mother Earth to sustain. So, what can one insignificant individual do to make a positive change? Quite a lot of small things it seems, all of which add up over 7.2 B people to make a considerable difference.
- Switch off the light when you’re not using it.
- Turn off the running water when you’re brushing your teeth.
- Take a 5 minute (or less) shower. Use a timer.
- Use energy intensive machines (dishwashers/ washing machines etc.) during non-peak energy hours.
- Avoid using the central A.C. whenever possible. Draw the curtains early on during warm days to prevent rooms from trapping heat. Use fans/ portable A.C.s to cool the local area where you are.
- Scrape the food off cutlery and crockery before running a dish load. Run on a ‘Light’ cycle. Open the washer door and let it ‘Air Dry’ rather than using ‘Heated Dry’.
- Run dryers on the ‘Low Heat’ option. Saves energy and your clothes last longer and look brighter, too.
- For your garden, think of using plants, especially native varieties, which have low water needs. Switch your water thirsty grass for a lawn which needs less water.
- Recycle: many, if not most, items can be recycled. Teach your family what can and can not be recycled.
- Reuse: consider reusing old items before consigning to the landfill.
- Reduce: consumption/ waste/ packaging. More details: www2.epa.gov/recycle
Small changes in the way we live can help save precious natural resources and help in saving our planet. Happy Earth Day!