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Tuesday, May 30, 2023

10 Clever Ways to Celebrate Earth Day

Earth Day—which is on April 22, 2022 this year—offers a specific time to consider how to improve our role as good Earth stewards. The anniversary of protecting and appreciating the Earth is rooted in “the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970,” according to www.EarthDay.Org. Today offers a prime opportunity to acknowledge our personal role in enjoying a planet with less pollution and litter, an improved climate, and making less of a carbon footprint.

1. Learn more about the Earth.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is offering online Earth Day activities from April 21-24, 2022. Explore to explore information about free live panel discussions with NASA Earth science experts, videos, downloadable content, youth activities, and more.

2. Teach youth to respect the Earth.

Young children can benefit from the habit of respecting Mother Earth being passed down to them. Introduce information about nonrenewable resources, saving electricity, recycling, and ways they can help take care of the Earth. Watch a kid-friendly video about keeping the Earth clean.

3. Cut down on using plastic cups, silverware, and straws.

 Even if you are in the habit of washing plastic drinkware or utensils, a food science professor named Barbara Ingham –who works for the University of Wisconsin W–Madison— provided food for thought on the university’s website. She concluded that “the plastic material can begin to degrade, allowing chemicals to leach into foods and beverages,” when plastic utensils are washed with detergents to clean them and hot water. A safer option may be to simply use fewer disposable items at mealtime, whenever it is feasible.

4. Repurpose plastic bags in new ways.

Many individuals may use plastic bags to tote lightweight items, or to line trash cans, after groceries are unpacked. It is often difficult to use large accumulations of them. Another option could be to diversify repurposing a stash, instead of chucking them in the trash. Even bags which are marketed as biodegradable still may not break down as efficiently as it sounds, according to PBS News Hour.

One clever solution is to collect a heap of them, then gather creative people you know who may want to crochet mats for the less fortunate. One woman who learned to make them appeared on The Kelly Clarkson Show. The mats have a sturdy appearance, and they help other individuals.

5. Join the rain barrel movement.  

Homeowners or business owners can conserve water by saving rainwater that runs off from their roofs when it rains. Not only does it save money on a water bill, but storing water and reusing it for plants, gardens or lawns helps the environment, too.

Photo by Andrea Blackstone

6. Recycle books.

One way to find new homes for books is to use or build a Little Free Library. The small book-sharing tool houses literature for potential new owners. Browsers who stop to look inside of the library can take books for free. In exchange, participants can leave unwanted books there for someone else. If you are handy, consider building a weather-resistant library to install with permission in a “Book Desert” or community space.

7. Participate in a cleanup or organize one.

Even if you don’t have time to participate in a major cleanup today, commit to helping to keep your neighborhood clean. If you want to find a cleanup, consider visiting to find locations.

Photo by Andrea Blackstone

8. Commit to exploring giving and receiving used goods.

 Everything from clothes to furniture can be recycled. Spread the word to ask if anyone needs what you may no longer need before tossing it in the dumpster. If you are in search of a specific item, there are ways to keep an eye out for it online. Buy Nothing Groups and the Freebies Alerts app can be excellent resources.

9. Let more trees live and go paperless.

If you receive paper bills or notifications you can do without, consider selecting a paperless option, if accessing the information online fits your lifestyle.

10. Let your feet feel the earth.

Feeling the soil and dirt beneath your feet may be good for you. The National Library of Medicine presented findings online that mentioned how going barefoot outdoors could positively impact everything from sleep disturbances to chronic pain reduction.

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