Lots of Little Things Add up to a Much Greener World
The push for a greener world is nothing new. As far back as the early 20th century, conservation-minded people were searching for ways to protect the land, keep the air clean, and preserve waterways.
Conservation and environmentalism really took hold in the early 1990s as the movement transcended the government to reach schoolyards. Today, the ideas of sustainability and green living have made it to the average home.
This often leads teens and kids asking themselves what they can do to make a greener world more possible. Actually, there are a lot of little things. What many people consider insignificant can mean a lot in terms of making the world a greener place. And so we need to listen to the voice of young people, play our role and start putting steps in place…
If you’ve been wondering what you can do, think of the possibilities as being a lot like collecting pennies. Perhaps one penny is insignificant by itself. But a whole lot of pennies can add up to an awful lot of money. If we all do those little things that seem insignificant, they will all add up to create a world that is greener in every way.
Don’t Waste Energy
How we produce energy has a significant impact on the planet. Some means of production are more damaging than others. What can we do? The most effective thing on a personal level is to not waste energy. The less energy humanity consumes, the less has to be produced. Lower energy production will reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and, as a result, cut down on the amount of pollution fossil fuels add to the environment.
As simple as it sounds, you can accomplish a lot by turning off lights when they are not in use. We can all save energy by not letting the water from the tap run needlessly. We can save energy by adjusting the thermostat, washing clothes in cold water, not standing in front of the fridge with the door open, etc.
Walk and Ride Bicycles
Another polluting activity we engage in all too frequently is relying on internal combustion engines to get us where we want to go. For example, did you know that there are billions of cars on the roads worldwide? Every one of those cars that are powered by an internal combustion engine that contributes to air pollution. We are also polluting the air with our trains, aircraft, and boats.
A simple thing we can all do is walk and ride bicycles. Driving the family car should be reserved only for those times when it is absolutely necessary. And even at that, public transportation is an option. If 25 people leave their cars at home and take a bus instead, that is fewer cars and less fossil fuel being burned.
Choose Green Household Products
Next up are the household products we use to clean and maintain our properties. Thankfully, there are lots of green products now on the market. Such products are less harmful to the environment because they are typically made with natural ingredients. All of us can switch from dangerous chemicals to natural products instead.
And importantly, not only is switching to greener cleaning products in not only good for the environment, it is also good for our health.
What are we talking about here? Things like cleaning products. Green cleaning products rely on natural ingredients to break up dirt and grime so that it can be wiped away.
Sometimes, we buy products without even realising the consequences. For example, it’s useful to keep some rock salt in store in case we have snow and icy weather. But brown rock salt is mined and leaves a residue whereas white rock salt is considered a better option as it is derived from seawater and doesn’t leave a residue. So if you live in an area that sees winter snow, even if that only happens occasionally, it’s worth ensuring you look for environmentally friendly rock salt for homes and businesses and choose a de-icing product that is not as hazardous for the environment.
The point of choosing green household products is to not contribute to pollution. The more of these products we can keep out of our sewer systems and landfills, the less the risk of environmental contamination.
Reuse, Repurpose and Recycle
Finally, the 3R’s of sustainability: reuse, repurpose and recycle. Reusing is the principle of taking a perfectly good object and reusing it instead of throwing it away. For example, consider the plastic tub that margarine comes in. Rather than throwing it away when it’s empty, reuse it as a storage container for other food products.
Repurposing is the practice of taking an old object and finding a new use for it rather than getting rid of it. Old clothes that cannot be worn any more can be cut up and used to make a quilt, for example. The extent to which you can repurpose is limited only by your imagination.
As for recycling, most of us are pretty familiar with the concept. We recycle things like paper, glass, and certain kinds of plastics. Recycling keeps reusable objects out of landfills. It also cuts the cost of the raw materials needed for new manufacturing.
All of these things might seem small and insignificant as compared to the grand scale of the planet on which we live. But remember, doing these little things is like collecting pennies. They all add up to quite a bit over time. It is really a matter of all of us doing our individual parts to contribute. That is how we make a greener world.