Back in 2008, I remember going to the movies to see The Happening, a horror movie directed by M. Night Shyaman. I'm a huge horror movie fan, so when I saw the previews, it looked awesome and I was so excited to see it. However, when I finished the movie, I was nothing short of disappointed.
SPOILER ALERT: the trees and plants are killing people. What?! Basically, humans were using up so much of the Earth's precious resources and turning it into a giant garbage can and they fought back by releasing a toxin to make people kill themselves. Through this population control, the Earth could regain balance.
I remember thinking about how ridiculous and absurd it was. What kinda plot was that for a horror movie?!
As I've gotten older and wiser, this plot makes more sense in my head. Not that I think trees are gonna kill people, but the message behind that movie is clear: respect Mother Earth, or else.
In the past eight years, I've learned a lot about this beautiful planet we call home, some good and some bad. Everything I've leaned has helped me to open up my eyes to the truth. On this Earth Day, a very special day, I felt it appropriate to do a post on why this day is so important, and what you can do to make a change in your daily life.
So why is this day important? To answer that question, ask yourself, why is the Earth important? Last time I checked, we only have one Earth, and without it we can't survive. That's a fact. I think people seem to think that we can keep destroying it, and it will keep being there for us, but that's not how it works. The Earth isn't full of unlimited resources.
Here's a scary and sad fact: the World Economic Forum released a report saying that by 2050 there will be more trash than fish in the ocean. There are an estimated 20,000 different species of fish in all the oceans. And that's only species! Imagine how many fish that equates to living in the ocean. It's hard to comprehend there being more trash than fish living in all the oceans. These oceans of course covering more than 70% of Earth's surface. Earth being the 5th largest planet in our solar system, weighing in at 6.6 sextillion ton, according to space.com - that's a number I don't even think we can process it's so big. So if more than 70% of all this is covered in oceans, which have billions of fish swimming in them, and by 2050 there will be more plastic than fish floating in those oceans.. take a minute to let that sink in.
Simple changes often have the biggest impact. That's because the easier it is to do, the more people are willing and able to do it. Here's some simple steps you can take to live a more green life:
Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.
-Reduce the amount of waste and power you have. If you're not using an appliance, unplug it. Keeps electricity off if you don't need it. Ride a bike or walk somewhere instead of drive if it's possible.
-Reuse everything you can. If you can afford to spend $4 (or more) on a case of water each week, you can afford to buy a reusable water bottle to use each day. Reusable shopping bags are not only cheap (most of mine were $.99), but they're cute! I've got so many cute designs, and they make shopping easier. Instead of having 50 plastic bags, I can use a few usable ones and I'm good to go. I keep them in my car so I'm never without them. I love using empty makeup containers for something else. I'm looking forward to using my empty glass bottle from my face mist to pot a little plant in it!
-Recycle! Everyone can recycle. Most townships offer recycling now. It doesn't take more than a second to separate your trash into actual trash and recyclables. A lot of food stores and Target offer recycling for plastic bags too! As you read above about the plastic in the ocean, recycling is so so important!
-Plant a tree or plant your own potted plant out of a mason jar or whatever you have handy!
-Buy Eco friendly items! There's so many brands that offer eco friendly clothes made from organic material and water based inks. When the time comes for a new car, look into a hybrid. Use vinegar and baking soda concoctions for cleaning, which are both cheap and chemical free! When buying Eco friendly, you want to make sure that: during production, while using, and when disposing of, the products don't harm the environment. That's the key.
-Grow your own garden! Even living in an apartment, you can have a cute little garden inside. You just need some sunshine and water, and some good YouTube instructions lol. I know that growing herbs can be pretty simple, I've been looking into having my own herb garden. If I can figure it out, I'll let you guys know in a different post!
-Go paperless! How many pieces of junk mail do you get daily? Or bills that you pay online and have no need for a paper statement? With everything being so easy to receive electronically in today's world, opt to go paperless as often as you can.
-My last tip is the one I recommend the most: Go vegan! As if you need any more reasons, going vegan isn't just better for the animals and for you, but for the environment too. Did you know that the meat and dairy industry is responsible about 50% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions? The number varies depending on who you get your facts from, but no one denies that it's a huge contributor to it. What it takes to grow the massive amount of food to feed the animals, and water for them to drink, then mercilessly killing them, packing, transporting, and storing their flesh for people to eat.. that's a lot of resources being used. In addition to that, all that food and water causes body waste, which breaks down releasing more dangerous gas into our world. By going vegan, you not only feel better about not adding to the cruelty but by reducing your carbon footprint!
This year, vow to make Earth Day every day. Mother Earth gives us life daily; food, water, oxygen. It's time we start respecting her daily.
Happy Earth Day to you all!