Although the COVID-19 pandemic has caused concerts, sporting events and other exciting spring plans to be put on hold, one thing that’s not cancelled is Earth Day. Taking place on April 22, this year’s Earth Day is extra special as it marks the 50th Earth Day celebration. While Earth Day will be different for most of us this year, there are still plenty of ways to get engaged and do something to benefit our planet.
10 Ways to Take Action for the Planet While Social Distancing
To give you a few ideas, members of Team Applied and their families shared activities they’re doing to celebrate the 50th Earth Day from the comfort of their own homes, yards or gardens. So grab your hiking boots and gardening gloves, and get ready to take advantage of your extra time at home!
Stir crazy yet? Social distancing doesn’t mean we have to stay indoors all day. Take 20 minutes to get outdoors and go on a walk around the block, explore new trails or ride a bike. You can even bring your furry friends along with you. Spending time in nature, especially among trees, significantly reduces stress and anxiety, improves mood, energy, sleep and boosts the immune system.
Work in your garden
Welcome the spring season by planting native plants, fruits and vegetables. Digging your hands in the soil is good for not only your physical health, but your mental health as well. Developing your green thumb can also save you money and reduce food waste.
Start a compost pile
It’s always important to save leftovers and reduce food waste, and this is an especially good time to be making the most of what you have. If you have any produce that has gone bad and you can’t use, try composting. You can compost in Tupperware and store it in your freezer, under the sink, on a balcony, wherever. Here are some helpful tips and tricks on composting to get you started.
Clean up your neighborhood
There’s no party like a clean-up party! While it’s always nice going on a walk around your neighborhood, it’s even nicer if you can help keep your neighborhood clean. Next time you go for a stroll, take a trash bag and gloves with you so you can clean up debris along the road or sidewalk.
On average, Americans recycle less than a third of our waste, so there is plenty of room for improvement in most homes across the country. If your home doesn’t already have one, create a recycling center. If you already have a recycling center, take another look at how your household is using it and how you could improve your efforts.
Switch streaming for reading
Reading is good for the mind, the soul and it turns out, the planet. A pastime like reading easily replaces streaming, which is notoriously carbon-intensive. So, dust off that massive book you’ve been meaning to read, and get to work. Also, if you’re craving sports amid a sports-less pandemic, why not crack open a biography about your favorite athlete or sports moment?
Stop drinking out of plastic water bottles
This one's a simple fix. Replace your single use plastic bottles with a stainless steel reusable water bottle.
Use a cloth towel instead of a paper towel
Not only are cloth towels just as handy in drying your hands as paper towels, but it's also cheaper and more environmentally friendly to hold onto a cloth towel than to buy a new roll of paper towels every week. Just be sure to switch out your cloth towel for a new one every day or so for sanitary purposes.
Make your yard creature-friendly
Want to feel like a Disney character by waking up to the sounds of birds chirping outside your window? Make your yard a welcoming place for local wildlife by installing bird feeders. It'll make you feel more harmonious with nature and give you something to look at while you enjoy your morning coffee.
Repurpose jars and other containers
Empty jars and other food containers don't need to be tossed away. Jars can become drinking glasses or even small serving bowls. Larger containers can be used to store other items like loose change or things that might just be sitting in your junk drawer.
While we may be celebrating Earth Day differently this year, we encourage everyone to be proactive for all communities and our planet. Are you celebrating Earth Day by doing something on our list or something that’s not? Let us know! Comment below or post a photo of how you’re celebrating on social media and tag Applied Systems on Twitter.