Are you looking for easy ways you can help our planet for Earth Day? This blog is the perfect resource for you and your family!
Earth Day is finally here!
Wall-E seems to be one of those movies people either love or love to hate. But either way, we all have to admit it was a film ahead of its time and it can teach us a lot about taking care of our planet.
Our world has experienced many hardships recently. Climate change has always been an issue in the modern world. Still, the pandemic has especially been brutal, not only for us, but for the environment as well. With the stress of social distancing and retaining a job taking up most days, it’s understandable how you could easily slip into an environmentally unsustainable lifestyle. I get it. It is easier to choose comfort and convenience over having to put in the effort to shrink your carbon footprint. Some days, it’s hard enough to remember packing my reusable carrier bags when doing a grocery run. But, I guarantee you that this effort is worth the reward of leaving behind a better and cleaner Earth for your children to thrive on.
Earth Day is a day to highlight all that our planet does for its inhabitants and for us to express our gratitude. The movement began in 1970 when founder and Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson, along with 80 others, picked the day to peacefully march across the US to propagate a healthy environment after witnessing the disastrous impact of a 1969 oil spill in California. They were successful in their mission as this was when the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts were first created.
We aren’t quite at “abandon the Earth and board space cruise ships” stage yet. However, the fight for a healthier and more sustainable planet is an ongoing mission that needs all of us. Organizing and partaking in a march is commendable and in line with demanding change on a legislative level; however, it is not always feasible nor possible now in this pandemic to do so. There are other just as impactful and easy ways you can help our planet on Earth Day.
Being environmentally conscious does not have to be complicated or time-consuming. Trust me! My family has incorporated small ways we can lessen the load on our big blue planet in our daily actions. If everyone does their part, no matter how small, collectively, we could change the planet for the better.
Here are some ways WALL-E inspires us to help our planet on Earth Day:
1) Plant a Tree
The whole premise of the movie was about finding the plant right? Goes to show how big of a deal this is! Planting trees and plants is a guaranteed way to improve the air quality in your space. Trees provide food and oxygen. Not only do they help clean the very air that we breathe, but they save you energy as they cool the air in hotter months and act as windbreakers in winter. Planting trees is also a great bonding activity that the whole family can enjoy!
Plus, you don’t have to be a ‘professional gardener’ to plant a tree. I’m not and we’ve planted several fruit trees in our garden and I’m happy to report that (most of them) are thriving!
2) Stop Using Single-Use Plastics
Remember all of the junk WALL-E was rolling over and compacting? A lot of those were single use plastics, friends! The harmfulness of plastic to the environment has been proven over and over again. Disposable plastic items, such as bottles and bags, are produced, used and discarded at such rapid rates that our Earth can simply no longer deal with it. I have switched from using plastic carrier bags when grocery shopping to reusable ones made of sustainable and ethically sourced fabric. Sure, it is just one more thing to remember to bring when I’m getting the kids in the car to go pick up my grocery order, but it makes such a difference in the long run! It’s worth it to find alternatives to single-use plastic items as it keeps them from sitting in landfills, polluting the land and acting as hazards to wildlife in the area.
If you still have plastic bags on hand, take them to store drop-off recycling so they can be remade and reused as composite plastic for things like kids’ playground equipment.
3) Conserve Water
Remember all of those pretty blue lakes in WALL-E? Me either! Water may be a renewable resource, but climate change has affected the Earth’s production of the much-needed liquid. We are seeing severe droughts occur all across the planet. Not only would you be helping this situation when conserving water in your home, but you will also lessen your energy use as it takes energy to filter, heat and pump water to your home.
Save water through small ways around your home such as filling the tea kettle with only the amount of water you need, turn off the tap while brushing your teeth, and plant drought-resistant plants that don’t require as much watering.
4) Go Car-Free
Notice those smoggy hazy skys on earth in the movie? Pollution isn’t pretty. I will admit that this is not always possible when you have children, especially those requiring car seats when traveling. But walking, biking or using public transport when possible is an easy way to still get where you need to go while helping the environment! Start off by pledging to go car-free, or carpool, for one week out of every month. Every action counts.
5) Donate Items that You No Longer Need
Some of the most memorable scenes for me in the movie were those towers of trash, and WALL-E’s stash of random things found just lying around. Do you know that pair of pants that are a little too snug? That chair that doesn’t match the rest of your living room decor? Or even that coffee machine that has been sitting in the back of the cupboard, untouched for the last 10 years? All of that can be donated instead of being trashed!
Throwing away items you no longer need just means that they will fatten up a garbage dump somewhere. Not only will it pollute the land, but it will go to waste as many of these items are still functional and can help others!
6) Use Long-Lasting Light Bulbs
Remember when Eve and WALL-E have the moment with the lightbulb? Well I’m pretty sure that wasn’t an LED one. This tip slips past many of us as we tend to just go for the cheapest option when shopping for such items (I know I have!). But what that extra $2-3 is actually buying is not a cuter design or fancier brand, but a safer and more long-lasting bulb. These bulbs not only emit less energy while providing the same quality of light to your home, but they also don’t emit greenhouse gases which can warm the Earth’s surface and cause respiratory problems in humans.
I have implemented all these changes in my home, and none of them have taken extra effort, caused me stressed, or lowered my quality of life. In fact, they have helped foster gratitude for our big blue planet. My children thoroughly enjoy our seasonal gardening sessions (and Lee Lee is always eating the okra from the garden). My husband loves that he does not have to replace the bulbs around the house every 2 months. Our electricity bill has never been lower.
These are just added on perks to the larger reward of helping our planet, so hopefully we’ll never have the scenes like we saw in WALL-E. And we can create a sustainable environment for our children and their children to enjoy always.
Let me know if the comments below what your favorite green tips are!