“The world must come together to confront climate change. There is little scientific dispute that if we do nothing, we will face more drought, famine and mass displacement that will fuel more conflict for decades.”Barack Obama
Y’all, my little county in South Carolina was ranked as number one in places affected by global warming. Beaufort County, South Carolina is in danger. We actually went for a walk on the beach a few days ago after king tide and most of our favorite beach was washed away. We see the effects up close and personal. Yet still so many people here deny that it is actually happening. That’s wild to me. I guess whether or not you believe it, it’s still happening. I’m a firm believer that it’s going to take all of us doing something to help.
Honestly, everyday habits can be honed to include a bit of ‘save the planet’ time without exerting that much energy at all. Let’s simply identify and curtail a few bad habits to help stop global warming. Do it for your kids. I’m going to start writing more on ecology, sustainability and green living again. It makes me more mindful of everything I do.
Global emissions of environmentally unsafe toxins are highest within the United States; yet, the U.S. has the benefit of technological advances that many countries still do not enjoy. The implication, here, is wastefulness. Here are some excesses to stop now. A little energy is required to relearn habits in an ecologically sound manner. However, the peace of mind is worth the effort and provides each person reducing these excesses with a mental pat-on-the-back for striving (at least in simple ways) to save the planet and stop global warming.
Coal Emissions and Excessive Burning of Fossil Fuels
The number one and two reasons for climate change are the excessive burning of coal and fossil fuels. What does this mean to regular people and their daily consumptive patterns? Electricity and gasoline, or rather, lights and cars. Simple, low-energy output solutions to reducing excess uses of these include:
Purchase and install energy-saving, compact fluorescent lightbulbs
Invest in energy-saving appliances (which often come with tax incentives)
Turn lights off as much as possible (Try new i-phone apps which turn lights off away from home if forgotten)
Ride bikes, scooters, skateboards and walk for short distance errands
Hang clothes on a clothesline occasionally to save power
End commuting in inefficient SUV’s – invest in hybrid or full-power electric cars and use them for commutes, or take public transportation for commuters.
Reduce and Recycle
Anything requiring production is often a large contributor to excessive emissions, which lead to global warming. Therefore, reducing the consumption of products (in general) helps to lower emissions rates. Just one of the reasons recycling can help stop global warming is reuse – new resources are not tapped into for producing new goods. This often requires less energy output during production as well. Simple ways to reduce consumption and recycle daily include:
Cups – Bring along reusable cups from home for coffee and soda refills rather than requiring new paper products. Daily consumption of beverages is one of the highest uses of styrofoam, plastic lids, and paper cups. An added benefit saves money.
Water bottles – Recycle water bottles by utilizing water dispensers to refill and reuse water bottles. Fill and freeze already used water bottles, then take them out and thaw when ready to consume. An added benefit: water stays cold during the day
Encourage recycling – Recycle all paper and cardboard products not just at home but at businesses, too. Know of a business that throws away its paper? Encourage recycling by asking the manager where the recycling bin is? One standard lunch at McDonald’s could be recycled all but the plastic cup lid and straw, yet there still is no recycling bins within their business accessible to customers. An added benefit: Avid recyclers won’t be asked to carry that extra paper all the way to their recycling bins.
Invest in the Health of the Planet
Purchase stock in green business and green industries. When already buying stock, funnel some investment money where it matters. Purchasing top-performing stocks often include such backward purchases as the coal-burning industry. Invest in peace of mind for the planet and risk a green business stock. This counterbalance, at the very least, is an effort to remind the government and the corporate business world that the health of the planet is an investment worth making.
When investing in new homes and remodels, consider ecologically sound materials and practices. Also, consider already established homes being improved with energy savers rather than new ones. Be open to less square feet, more efficient use of space and more ‘green’ living. There is often such a quick return on investment with green materials now that a sacrifice isn’t required.
Landscape and Garden Organically
When adding landscaping or gardening, always choose organic. Purchase organics at markets and farmer’s markets whenever possible to promote organic businesses. Organic farms home delivery services are often available in cities and are a thrilling way to teach a family the enjoyment of eating organically.
Each monthly delivery offers new and different fruit and veggies to be discovered. Organically grown produce has a higher level of antioxidants, and because these boxes often contain ‘on-the-vine’ produce, vitamin levels are often higher as well. Help family and friends to make the adjustment to growing organic too, and help stop global warming.