4 Earth Day Tips for You & the Planet
Hello healthy friends, and fellow citizens of Earth! This Earth Day, we are once again spreading the mission of healing the planet with one good choice at a time. We're trying to help Earth feel more like a Windows desktop display, and less like it's covered in microplastics.
Avoid Plastics & Styrofoam
Plastics and Styrofoam have the supervillain power of never breaking down in the environment! Specifically, plastic takes 100-400 years to break down in a landfill, according to the EPA.gov (2016), and it is said that Styrofoam takes even longer! When these materials do finally break down, they leach toxins into the Earth's water supply, wreaking havoc on the health of humans and marine life.
One way to avoid this mess is by bringing your own containers when you can. For example, one can bring Tupperware to a restaurant to use for your leftovers, or a backpack for your groceries when stores allow. If you must opt for a single-use, ask if they have a paper option, like a paper grocery bag.
Fun Fact: at store checkout, Fruitful Yield uses clear, biodegradable bags derived from corn,
and paper bags. So, when we ask, "Paper or plastic?" we don't actually mean plastic!
Opt for Renewable Resources
While you're avoiding single-use items made from toxic materials, once used, you can replace these with materials that you can use time and time again, like:
- stainless steel
- wood, especially bamboo
It's important to re-use everything you can, so we avoid putting more bulk into our landfills.
You might like: Clean, upcycled (not to be confused with used) toothbrushes from Radius with replaceable brush heads. Upcycled plates and bowls from Repurpose. Stainless Steel straws with cleaning brushes from U-Konserve. Our in-store "If you Care" line of compostable sandwich bags, parchment paper, and other household items. Plus our new, plastic-free laundry detergent sheets!
Give an Item New Life
Marie-Condo-ing your space? When you feel the time is right to part with an item, try to avoid throwing it in the garbage. There are many different roads to finding items a new home! Consider your work place's or church's giveaway table. There are donation centers at Goodwill, Salvation Army, second-hand stores, and local places with their own causes, like People's Resource Center's Clothes Closet! Those looking to make an extra buck might also like to sell their things on sites like Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, eBay, Depop, and Poshmark.
Along with donating, buying second hand (rather than buying new) is also better for the planet.
Tackle Food Waste
There are a few tips to reducing your food waste.
- Compost: learn how to compost food/plant scraps at home in this awesome article from the Environmental Protection Agency.
- Buy what you need: grocery shop weekly, with a grocery list and the meals you plan to make in mind.
- Organize your fridge: and don't hide anything! This will help you use what you've got, and not throw it out.
- Freeze your food: Buy frozen food for fruits, veggies, or meats you aren't going to use within the week. Or, freeze your normal food before it goes bad. For example, peel and chop bananas before freezing in a freezer-safe container, to use in your next smoothie!
We hope this article was a good jumping off point for you to explore some Earth-friendly lifestyle tips. Continue your journey by refreshing yourself on local recycling rules, checking out the SCARCE podcast: Earth Chats, and by truly cherishing your time on the Earth.