Happy Earth day! I love finding ways to be sustainable and trying to look at the positive things that are helping the environment just now and there are lots of positive exciting facts to be found on happyeconews.com 😊 (for example, wildlife are freely exploring their natural habitats without fear or risk of human danger). I always feel that there’s more to do, so today I’m going to reflect on the 10 ways to help the earth (from the Ecology centre):
- Go outside more– this is definitely the time for this! I’ve always loved forests and the sound of the birds singing, and I feel lucky in these crazy times to be able to go for a daily bike ride around loch beside my house (sometimes the deer are out). It’s always easy to slip into the habit of driving places we could walk to and I can definitely be guilty of this. This is something that I’m going to be mindful of when we are able to travel again, I’ll to remember the environmental and emotional benefits of walks and bike rides.
- Get reusable bags– this is probably one of the easiest little differences to make and one that I’ve adopted (although I have broken a couple of bags by shoving too many books in, which defeats the point haha)
- Recycle– I always try to do this and when I have a classroom (I’m a student teacher just now) recycling and sustainability is something I’d definitely like to involve the children in 😊 I’m unsure how good Scotland is at recycling as a whole, but hopefully it will keep improving. The main struggle is finding foods that aren’t covered in plastic and this is an issue that I really hope companies and shops will begin to take more seriously. I also like to paint sometimes and make collages, I’ve recently tried to incorporate recycled materials into collages to make a little difference (I love using easter egg wrappers as gold foil!)
- Buy organic foods and products– This is again a little bit difficult where I live as I haven’t seen many whole food stores or zero waste food shops, but I try my best and would like to learn more about this this year 😊
- Stop eating meat– I was a vegetarian for two years before becoming vegan six months ago. I feel that some people can be very judgemental and I don’t believe in preaching choices, however, for those of you who have ever thought about becoming vegan, I would say it’s easier that it appears 😊 There are lots of options everywhere I’ve been and I wouldn’t say it’s more expensive that buying meat. When deciding to become vegan I worried about missing foods like cheese, but once I made the decision it was surprisingly easy to adapt my diet and I haven’t craved anything that couldn’t be replaced. I would also recommend trying to make your favourite recipes replacing things with vegan alternatives (I love mushroom risotto) rather than trying to eat only ‘vegan’ recipes (endless chickpeas). Cheese can still be a bit dodgy; it has to be said, but I’d recommend Violife slices and applewood smoked cheese 😊
- Start composting– we have a little compost bin and I try to freeze meals to save waste but this is still something I could make steps to improve!
- Start gardening– this is definitely something I have to work on this year, I have little interest in gardening and somehow managed to kill a cactus haha. I might try a little vegetable patch though, now is the time 😊
- Use glass bottles over plastic– I really only drink tap water and diet irnbru (I’m a stereotype) so this is quite easy to do, but it can be too easy to buy plastic bottle whilst out so this is something I’ll try to be mindful of (when I’m allowed out again in five years haha)
- Make your own cleaning products– definitely something to work on, I’ve never tried this! If you have any tips please let me know! I might also try out making my own makeup and deodorant while I’m home to see if any of my experiments work out 😊
- Plant a tree– There’s a fun little app called My Trees that I donate to 😊 Trees are planted with the money you donate and you’re entered into a weekly lottery. This is a simple way to have an impact if this is something that interests you and you’re able to (I know it’s really difficult in current times though). I also found a little app called Weare8 where you can watch short environmental videos and a little bit of money is donated to environmental charities for every video you watch (you can also make money by watching, it’s something tiny little 5p per video but every bit makes a difference) 😊
Happy earth day, and please let me know if you’d recommend any steps that can help to make a difference. I hope you’re doing well!