It’s a month post-Earth Day, which means all those SAVE THE PLANET campaigns, packed with feel-good messaging encouraging you to buy their recycled, organic, ethically-produced, gluten-free messenger bags and promising to plant a tree...somewhere...in honor of your purchase? A distant...distant...memory.
Is it great that some merchants are trying to produce and provide their goods in a sustainable and ethical way? For sure! The problem is, it’s often hard to know which of those merchants have any kind of ongoing mission to care for the planet. It's all too easy to simply capitalize on the general earth-consciousness surrounding Earth Day, only to return to more careless practices once the holiday has passed. (Sad face.)
Any effort to contribute to the health of the Earth is, of course, a beautiful thing! But we believe it’s little efforts over time that make the biggest difference. So, without further ado, here are 8 ways you can live in service to Mother Earth--365 days a year!
According to theBBC, “around 85% of all textiles thrown away in the US--roughly 13 million tonnes in 2017--are either dumped into landfill or burned.” This percentage often includes clothes we donate to local thrift stores and shelters. Whether due to capacity issues or the quality of the goods you donate, those organizations can’t keep everything. What isn’t purchased (or isn’t purchasable to begin with) eventually gets tossed.
Reselling through platforms like Depop, ThreadUp, or Poshmark can give greater assurance that your clothes are going to someone who wants them. (They paid you directly for them, after all!) Not to mention the extra bit of moolah for you.
Are we discouraging you from donating altogether? Absolutely not! Just be mindful with the way you repurpose your clothes and other goods.
It’s no secret that solar power systems soak up that good, clean energy from the sun. Problem is, when someone says “solar power,” we often jump straight to those enormous panels used for powering houses and businesses, which, while cool, are...quite cost-prohibitive for most.
Get this: you don’t need massive solar panels on your roof to reap the benefits of solar power (lower power bills, anyone?) and help combat greenhouse gas emissions. Incorporating even the smallest solar-powered chargers--for your electronics, for example--can make a difference!
Supporting local artisans and farmers is a great way to be more earth-conscious for myriad reasons:
Incorporating reusable products into your everyday life is a great way to adopt quick and easy eco-friendly habits. Instead of plastic water bottles, opt for a reusable water bottle you can carry with you everywhere. Next time you’re headed to the store, bring a couple of reusable bags. Keep a stainless steel or bamboo straw on you for iced coffee, soda, and other chilly beverages. These acts might feel too small to do any good, but every single one helps keep trash out of our landfills and oceans!
If you’re keeping it local when running errands, try walking instead of driving. If you have a bike, try biking to work to reduce your carbon footprint. Depending on where you live, it might be impractical (or impossible) to be permanently carless, but doing what you canto reduce motor transport emissions (biking, carpooling, etc.) can go a long way.
These modes of transportation are also the perfect way to get your exercise in. Double win.
It’s 2021, after all! Most service providers (electricity, internet, highway tolls, etc.) offer a paperless option. Use it! Opting for an email receipt or an electronic statement eliminates paper waste and lowers the need for more paper. Over time, those paperless choices can save whole trees!
According to the USDA, food waste is estimated to comprise 30 to 40% of the food supply. Composting is a great way to help reduce food waste and also give back to the Earth. Composted food helps give life to garden beds and also enriches the soil in which our food grows. If you don’t have a direct need for compost (or a way to do it), look for local drop off stations or neighbors who may be able to put your scraps to use. A quick Google search for “food waste drop off near me” should do the trick.
At Enticing Trees, we’re doing our part by reclaiming wood that would typically go to waste to lovingly craft beautiful goods (yep, even bespoke ones). This not only breathes new life into exquisite old, natural wood--it also takes advantage of natural resources already in circulation instead of taking more from the Earth, curbing deforestation while adding beauty to homes all around the country.
To sum up--yes, consciousness on Earth Day is great, but it’s the little things we do the other 364 days of the year that compound over time to make the greatest difference.