Thursday, April 19, 2012

Earth Day Tips 2012

I have to say that the one thing that REALLY gets under my skin is when I see someone throwing garbage on the ground, particularly when a garbage can is simply a few steps away. As a collective people, we have grown complacent to the fact that our home, Planet Earth, needs to be taken care of, just like the actual home that we live in. Would you throw a used sandwich wrapper on your kitchen floor and leave it there? Probably not. Grrrr.

In honor of both my rant above, and the fact that Earth Day is this weekend (Sunday, April 22nd), I wanted to share some tips that each and every one of us can do to minimize our footprint on the earth. If everyone helped, even in only 1 or 2 areas, then we would make huge strides in keeping our Planet Earth healthy.

In a 2010 post (March 2010-Authors Going Green - part 2), I revealed some alarming facts I discovered on the website, like this fact: "Approximately 1 billion trees worth of paper are thrown away every year in the United States alone." If that doesn't make you do a double-take, you must not have a pulse. I mean, really?!

In this post, (March 2010-Authors Going Green) I list some writer specific tips for "going green".

And now, I'm adding some new tips below. Can you find one that works for you, one that you can adopt into your daily routine?

Volunteer at a Local Clean-up Event:
Every year, my son and I participate in a local river clean-up during the summer. It's amazing the amount of garbage that gets collected. We always have a blast. It is a great bonding experience for us, and at the end of the day, we see how we made a real difference when the garbage is piled up, ready to be taken away for proper processing. I posted about our river clean-up last year, here's the link: River Cleanup 2011.

Return Unused Clothes Hangers to Your Drycleaner:
Hangers have a way of multiplying almost as fast as rabbits, so instead of throwing those excess hangers in the trash, bring them back to your cleaner. It helps your drycleaner reduce costs, and you extend the life of the hangers by keeping them out of landfills.

Use Reusable K-Cups :
Keurigs and other individual-serve coffee makers are all the rage, but have you stopped to think about the waste that is created by all those discarded K-Cups? Only a few of the K-Cups types are recyclable (Vue Packs for instance) and even so, not all recycling places will take them. To find a recycling solution, go here: GMCR - Keurig Vue). If you can, purchase a reusable K-Cup. If that's not an option for you, you can also find other uses for the used K-cups. Here are some ideas on what to do with cleaned K-Cups:
More K-Cup Crafts From Jillian (Going Green Crafters and Artists website)
K-Cup Recycling...Or Shall I Say Reusing (Mommy Is Green website)

Return Plastic Shopping Bags or Use Reusable Bags:
It's fairly self-explanatory, pass on the plastic shopping bags and opt for the reusable kind, but if you must use the plastic ones, return them to the grocery story when done for reuse.


Sarah Turnbull said...

Great links for K-cups! Thanks for this. And happy Earth Day to you!

Michelle said...

Thanks Sarah! Too bad they're predicting rain in NJ tomorrow for Earth Day...would have been nice to be out in the park. :)

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