As you make your new year's resolutions, add one with the planet in mind. The year is 2021, and never has it been more important for us to do everything we can to safeguard the environment.
While there are some major political and transformative changes that need to be made across larger industries, the below are some personal ways you can contribute and do some of the lifting:
1. Travel more consciously. Skip the car and instead get from point A to point B by walking, running, biking, or taking public transportation. If you walk, run, or bike, you get a small workout in. If you take public transportation, you can also get where you’re headed more efficiently and still reduce your overall carbon footprint. For every mile you don’t drive, you’re reducing your carbon footprint by one pound.
2. Commit to avoiding single-use plastics. We know this might be a big lifestyle change for some, since we’ve lived in a plastic-filled society for so long. Start small with plastic bags and straws, and slowly start replacing other items with reusable versions. Plastic bags have a lifespan of 500 to 1,000 years in landfills.
3. Learn the ins and outs of recycling. Most people don’t realize that recycling is much more than tossing plastic in a blue bin. There’s a bit more to the practice, and we recommend you learn the ins and outs by reading up on proper recycling practices here. Did you know you can’t recycle dirty pizza boxes?
4. Go green at least part-time. A full plant-based diet transformation isn’t for everyone, but why not commit to eating a plant-based diet one or two days a week? Even this small step helps and might eventually influence you to add a third or fourth plant-based day to your weekly diet. Animal agriculture contributes as much greenhouse gases as every car, plane, train, and ship on Earth.
5. Educate others. This might be one of the most important commitments you can make this year. The future of our planet is now reliant on large groups and societies coming together to combat climate change. Mobilizing requires more widespread information. The more people we educate on these matters, the more people we can gather to mobilize against the threat to our planet.