Sunday, April 22, is Earth Day
This year’s theme is “End Plastic Pollution“. Read more here from EarthDay.org >
The threat of plastic pollution has never been so alarming. With recent research proving the existence of plastic particles in our food chain; and reports showing massive islands of plastic forming in the Caribbean and in the Pacific Ocean (as recent examples), we have come to a new realization of the environmental damages we continue to cause.
Reversing this damage is difficult and will take a long time. Fundamental changes have to be implemented which require comprehensive education and action from ordinary citizens and governments. Extensive research & development, funding, and partnerships are needed for advancing the alternatives. [Read more about some of the latest scientific advancements in developing plastic alternatives.]
Besides sitting behind the screens, sharing doomy articles on plastic particles in the food chain, we can – and should -engage in fun and positive activities on this day! After all, Earth Day is a chance to practice mindfulness and to take care of mother nature.
Here are some activities you can engage in, this weekend!
1. Plan an adventure to a local National or Urban Park (and be sure to pick up the plastic pollution & trash you see on your outing!)
You can go hiking and enjoy the scenery of a local national (or urban) park in your area. There are more than one hundred national parks with many activities this weekend. visit their Event’s Page and start planning. Although the National Parks Service offers many free events, we suggest you make a donation! There are major campaigns which desperately need public support! For example, the Yosemite Conservancy – a campaign raising $20 million to restore Yosemite National Park’s Mariposa Grove – is just one example! There are many different ways you can help. Learn more about partnership opportunities and direct donations to National Park Service by clicking here
2. Attend or plan a local Earth Day activity with friends! And keep an eye out for ways to decrease Plastic Pollution!
There are many local events around you on Earth Day. There are many websites such as Facebook, Eventbrite and Eventful, are great ways to discover fun events with a mission. A quick Google search took me to this Eventbrite page for local events in Los Angeles. You can simply follow this link and adjust the location to your zip code. There are a variety of events such as film festivals, beach cleanups, and entertaining group hikes!
How about organizing your own cleanup!? (congratulations, you are becoming an activist and an advocate)
3. Pledge to compost while endeavoring to reduce your use of plastics!
Did you know food scraps end up in landfills and release methane- a greenhouse gas? Learn more about composting by watching this informative video by Kiss the Ground – A California-based nonprofit with a mission to regenerate land and reverse climate change by building back healthy soil. EPA offers great tips on how to compost at home!
4. Stay informed about Plastic Pollution and other environmental issues along with other sustainable tools and tips!
Learn about different local, national and international nonprofits. See how you can get involved! But who has time for tedious research!? We recommend you download the Passport2Good App! Passport2Good is a fun platform for the discovery and support of good causes you love, all in one place! (yes! No endless number of windows on your browser) Users can learn and follow progress on the U17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG). They can search organizations by name or discover nonprofits by the cause- For example, on Earth Day, you simply search ‘environment’ and you will see a list of nonprofits with an environmental mission! You can follow the organizations on the app, share their social media posts, donate and even attend a nearby event!
We need to remember that Earth Day should be a lifestyle! Check out these great tips from the National Resource Defense Council (NRDC) on endorsing new practices to advance a more environmentally mindful lifestyle. Even more tips for Earth Day? Click here
OR (from our friends at EcoWatch.com) :
Here are 10 Ways to “Rise Above Plastic Pollution”:
- Choose to reuse when it comes to shopping bags and bottled water. Cloth bags and metal or glass reusable bottles are available locally at great prices.
- Refuse single-serving packaging, excess packaging, straws and other “disposable” plastics. Carry reusable utensils in your purse, backpack or car to use at bbq’s, potlucks or take-out restaurants.
- Reduce everyday plastics such as sandwich bags and juice cartons by replacing them with a reusable lunch bag/box that includes a thermos.
- Bring your to-go mug with you to the coffee shop, smoothie shop or restaurants that let you use them, which is a great way to reduce lids, plastic cups and/or plastic-lined cups.
- Go digital! No need for plastic CDs, DVDs and jewel cases when you can buy your music and videos online.
- Seek out alternatives to the plastic items that you rely on.
- Recycle. If you must use plastic, try to choose #1 (PETE) or #2 (HDPE), which are the most commonly recycled plastics. Avoid plastic bags and polystyrene foam as both typically have very low recycling rates.
- Volunteer at a beach cleanup. Surfrider Foundation Chapters often hold cleanups monthly or more frequently.
- Support plastic bag bans, polystyrene foam bans, and bottle recycling bills.
- Spread the word. Talk to your family and friends about why it is important to reduce plastic in our lives and the nasty impacts of plastic pollution.
Last but not least, learn more about the history of Earth Day
Happy Earth Day Weekend!