Have you gone green this year? Or do you want to learn how? As action sports enthusiasts and individuals that embrace the outdoors such as we do, taking care of the earth has always been a fighting cause for surfers, snowboarders, and skateboarders alike, This month we celebrate Earth Day on April 20th. What better time to learn how to care for our earth and take action to do so. Here are some simple ways to participate in giving Mother Earth a fighting chance.
Join in a beach clean up. All around the country and the world, you can join in with the Surfrider Foundation and one of its many chapters to participate in cleaning up your local spot. Check out their site to find a chapter near you and see what you can do to tidy up your local shoreline.
Take action at home. There are small steps we can all take in our homes and offices to start ourselves in the right direction. There is no better way to change the way people think then to lead by example. Here are a few simple steps you can take to start the process. These helpful tips and more listed on www.earthday.gov.
* Turn off appliances and lights when you leave the room.
* Switch out light bulbs to Compact Flouresent Light bulbs (CFL). If every household in the U.S. replaced one light bulb with a CFL, it would prevent enough pollution to equal removing one million cars from the road.
* Use the microwave to cook small meals. (It uses less power than an oven.)
* Purchase “Green Power” for your home’s electricity.
* Have leaky air conditioning and refrigeration systems repaired.
* Use a programmable thermostat to save on heating and cooling costs when you’re not home.
* Insulate your home, water heater and pipes.
Use Less Water
* Don’t let the water run while shaving or brushing teeth.
* Take short showers
* Keep drinking water in the refrigerator instead of letting the faucet run until the water is cool.
* Wash only full loads of laundry or use the appropriate water level or load size selection on the washing machine.
* Buy high-efficient plumbing fixtures & appliances.
* Repair all leaks (a leaky toilet can waste 200 gallons a day).
* Water the lawn or garden during the coolest part of the day (early morning is best).
* Set sprinklers to water the lawn or garden only – not the street or sidewalk.
* Sweep outside instead of using a hose.
Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle
* Buy permanent items instead of disposables.
* Buy and use only what you need.
* Buy products with less packaging.
* Buy products that use less toxic chemicals.
* Repair items as much as possible.
* Use durable coffee mugs, cloth napkins or towels.
* Clean out juice bottles and use them for water.
* Reuse boxes.
* Purchase refillable pens and pencils.
* Donate extras to people you know or to charity instead of throwing them away.
* Reuse grocery bags as trash bags.
* Recycle paper (printer paper, newspapers, mail, etc.), plastic, glass bottles, cardboard, and aluminum cans.
* Recycle old/unused electronics and toner.
In the market to stimulate the economy? Take the time to research the facts. As a nation of consumers, we constantly are in need for things… take the time to learn about the emission rating on your new car or the percentage of your MacBook that can be recycled when in 6 months the new one comes out and you ditch your current one. These little tid-bits of knowledge will not only help you shop smarter, think greener, but is a great way for you to spread the word and tell a friend. You could unknowingly start a chain reaction of awareness.