Earth Day April 22nd, 2020: What You Can do to Help the Environment.


Christopher Owen

The outbreak of the coronavirus has taken the world by surprise and all of our lives have been greatly upended. At the moment, government officials are mandating social distancing to flatten the curve of future cases and greatly limiting the time we spend outside. As we practice individual and collective responsibility to improve human health, we should also be mindful of the health of our environment. Earth Day 2020 will be the 50th anniversary of this movement and is a good time to reflect on how important nature and our green spaces are, especially amid this pandemic. Below are some ideas on how to change your habits to help the planet.


  1. Consider reading more than streaming –  

Streaming videos are known to emit tons of carbon into the atmosphere, a factor linked with the current climate crisis. Reading over streaming is not only environmentally-friendly, but it is good for the mind and soul. Although libraries are closed, you can get ebooks through their digital resources. 


  1. Start a plant-based diet and reduce food waste –

While you are stuck inside, time is on your side. Use it to try making new plant-based meals and cutting back on meat. Even a meal of canned beans and rice is easy to prepare and healthy. Manufacturing meat, especially beef, produces dangerous levels of carbon that gets emitted into the atmosphere. Another way to help the planet is to reduce food waste by eating leftovers from meals. Less food thrown out minimizes the amount of food put into landfills. Rotting food in landfills emits methane, a greenhouse gas proven to be 25 times stronger than carbon dioxide.


  1. Add more greenery to your house –

Plants greatly aid in reducing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. You can help the climate crisis by planting more vegetables, herb, fruit and flowering plants or trees and shrubs around your house to mitigate the effects of ever-increasing carbon levels. Nurseries and garden centers offer open-air markets to safely shop in or curbside pick-ups or deliveries. 


  1. Do something environmentally-friendly –

A meaningful phrase to remember is “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.” Simple actions can have a positive impact. For example, try to reduce food waste and reduce purchasing single-use items. Consider reusing items or donating them instead of throwing them out in the trash/landfills. Lastly, help conserve natural resources by recycling materials such as metal, plastic, glass, paper, and old electronics while purchasing new products made from recycled materials.