Thursday, April 22, 2010

40 Years

40 years ago today, the environmental movement began. A lot of things were brewing in the United States at that time, and a lot of people started to recognize the damage that was being done to the environment by big businesses and common citizens alike. Industrial pollutions was running rampant and littering wasn't didn't even spur a second thought. On April 22nd, 1970, rallies and protests were held across the country on college campuses, at state capitols, in front of the headquarters of large corporations. By bringing attention to the issue, the people were able to make change. Four major events occurred because of that first Earth Day: the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency, and the passing of the Clean Air, Clean Water and the Endangered Species Acts.

A lot of progress has been made in the past 40 years, but there is still a lot to be done. We're facing global warming and only we can turn this around so many more generations will be able to enjoy the things we often take for granted. We spend hours running in parks, hiking mountains, boating in lakes and oceans, fishing in streams, and breathing fresh air. We should do all we can to make sure that our great great grandchildren can do the same.

The thing is, it's really not that difficult to make a difference. Every little thing we do, the little changes we make to our daily habits make a huge difference when you multiply them by all the little things that everyone else does. Here are a few quick things that hardly take any extra time:

1. Use resuable bags when shopping. Not only for food, but even when running quick errands around town.
2. Buy a reusable, BPA-free bottle and fill it up at home and from drinking fountains rather than buying bottled water on the go. Not only will you save money, but you'll also be helping the environment. plus. there are so many styles, colors, and sizes now, they are much more fun and 'cooler' than bottled water, too!
3. Take a travel mug to your local coffee shop or truck and ask them to fill it up rather than a paper cup.
4. Turn off the lights. Simple enough, right? It's amazing how many buildings are lit up 24hrs a day all over this city because people don't turn off the lights in their offices!
5. Eat organic foods whenever possible (HERE's the list of top foods to eat organic).
6. Shop at local farmers markets and buy in season fruits and vegetables as often as possible. HERE's a great site provided by Tricia, where you can see what's fresh in your state.
7. Recycle everything you can. Even clothing and textiles. In NYC, the Council on the Environment NYC has booths at farmers markets throughout the city each week where you can drop off basically any old textile for recylcing - clothes, shoes, hats, coats, linens, even belts and handbags! Go HERE for more details.
8. Instead of getting in the car, cab or even the subway, walk to your next destination.
9. Cardio equipment in the gym uses a LOT of energy. Once a week, workout in a park or take a run, walk or bike ride around your neighborhood instead of heading to the gym.
10. Instead of turning on the air conditioner at the first sign or warm weather, open your windows and let the fresh air in!

What is your favorite green tip?

Workout Stats -
15mi bike
200 crunches
2x30sec planks
stretching and foam roller


misszippy said...

Great tips--thanks for sharing. I'll add one--cut back on paper towel use. I bought some nice rags that I use for cleaning instead, from sinks to countertops, to the 'fridge.

Robyn said...

These are all great tips! Another one is using CFL light bulbs. I've yet to have to replace any of mine.

Mel -Tall Mom on the Run said...

Ohhhh love this post. I will be linking this in tomorrow High Five GReat posts..

Hmmmmm... not sure, I guess my tip would be to teach your kids (or the next generation) young about recycling and conservation. Our 4 year old always turns off the light when he leaves a room.. Which is GREAT!

Sami said...

Stopping over from SITS... what a great post! Especially on Earth Day! :) We never have electronics running in the house unless we're using them; lights, computers, TV, etc. I don't know how people can leave their TV on all day long!

And, recycle recycle recycle! Our town doesn't have recycling pick-up, so I have to sort all my magazines and glass bottles and what have you and bring them to the recycling center, but it's kind of more fun to load up your trunk and do it that way. :)

Amy said...

One thing that I've started doing is only using one paper towel after washing my hands in the bathroom at work (I was previously using two). It doesn't get my hands 100% dry, but by the time I've walked back to my desk they're totally fine. I figure it's all the little changes that can really start to add up!

SueMac said...

I take my water bottle everywhere! Great tips!

Rebecca said...

Found you through SITS! My husband flash boils asparagus in a sautee (sp?) pan. Just put in about an inch of water and boil the asparagus for 2-3 mins. They are crunchy (not hard), crisp, and oh-so-yummy! Good luck! Stop by my blog when you get the chance!