Earth Day is not exactly something new. The day has been celebrated since 1970, when US Senator Gaylord Nelson began bringing eco issues onto the US national agenda. In December that year, Congress authorised the creation of a federal agency to tackle environmental issues, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. And similar agencies followed suit worldwide, such as the Environmental Protection Authority in Western Australia in 1971.
Today, we celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd.
Despite the fact that Mother Nature is the constant source of our liveliness, she doesn’t get much respect for it. While we’re busy digging her up for minerals, driving around in fuel-guzzling cars, and eating the fruit from her trees, she’s busy renewing herself and constantly trying to keep up.
So let’s consider at least this week her one week off.
Here are 9 things you can do to show her the respect she deserves, y’all.
Compiled by Antonino Tati
01. Go for a simple walk in the park.
A clear mind and fit body are the prerequisites to smarter thinking and better acting. Make the most of still being allowed to exercise as restrictions and rules go up and down. Yep, around that big green field down the road from your home. It’s not just there filling up space vainly; instead it’s offering you space to stretch your legs, do a bit of yoga, kick a ball around, walk the dog, check out the locals, tune in to the birds, whatever you want. It’s big. It’s green. It’s beautiful. It’s yours.
02. Pick up some trash.
The Great Global Cleanup® is a worldwide campaign to remove billions of pieces of trash from neighborhoods, beaches, rivers, lakes, trails, and parks — reducing waste and plastic pollution, improving habitats, and preventing harm to wildlife and humans. Cleanups are registered all over Australia. For example, in WA you can attend the cleanup on Shelley Foreshore this Saturday 23 April from 8am AWST. Bring some plastic bags and a smile and help make Australia beautiful! In future, you can register a cleanup for your area here.
03. Cultivate a sustainable wardrobe.
The message is simple: wear sustainable fashion. Be sure to check out some brilliant clothing outlets for vintage style fashion including The Salvos, Good Samaritans and your local mom-and-pop style shops. For new clothing, be sure to check that garmetns tick all the right boxes: are made with sustainably sourced materials; with ink that isn’t poisonous to our rivers and seas; and garments that are more classic and less likely to go out of style. While you’re at, sign the petition here to insist the fashion industry much change.
04. Plant something in your garden.
We need plants for survival. Without the oxygen they produce, we wouldn’t breath. Make your garden a livelier place and plant a few, well, more plants. Even something as simple as an avocado seed or a handful of pumpkin seeds can grow into a beautiful green tree – and they’ll sprout in a matter of days in this weather!
05. Chuck unneeded documents in the recycle bin.
Yep – all that paper ‘work’ you don’t need, get Marie Kondo on it. From the tax stuff of over five years ago to that dark poetry no-one was going to read, get rid of it once and for all. And remind yourself to print less next time – and stick to white papers in digital form.
06. Ensure your compositable food scraps are going in the right FOGO bin.
It’s the green bin, of course, which gets picked up once a week on your street by council. Check the calendar to be sure you have the correct collection date.
07. Use eco-friendly products in your cleaning up.
Adopt the use of chemical-free products, but also paraben-free, cruelty-free and Australian-made. Most of these details can be spotted on the label of the product. Good, sustainable brands to use around the house include E-sup (esup.com.au), Ethique, Coles Green Choice, and many of the brands featured on the site Flora & Fauna. Also be sure the packaging your products arrive in is sustainable.
08. Take that sales call from a trusted solar panel company.
I’ve literally just gotten off the phone with two different sales reps for two different solar panel companies and have booked in appointments for tomorrow, one after the other. That way my contemplation of changing over to solar panels is top off mind on the very day following Earth Day. This time I’ll be seriously weighing up my solar panel options. Solar panel businesses are now offering huge savings your electricity bills so that the monies can go toward paying for what is often quite an expensive change-over exercise. Even if I can’t afford to change over this year, I’ll be saving the information and truly evaluating it for when I can afford to.
09. Foster or adopt an animal in need.
Get online and Google what species are in danger. You’ll be surprised at how a small a donation per year can help keep something like an orphaned baby elephant or injured rhino alive. A decade ago, I adopted an elephant named Dupotto in Nairobi, Kenya. He was sooooo cute, how could I not assist his wellbeing? Unfortunately Dupotto has now passed but I do know he was well looked after in that decade since I was kept up to date with his cute elephant shenanigans. To adopt an elephant of your own visit www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org. You’ll be reminded of your sponsored animal’s progress at least once a year, usually around Christmas, which is nice!