We too often think of the environment as someone else’s problem—automobile manufacturers, oil refineries, and power plants, for example. But we each have a personal responsibility to help keep Mother Nature healthy and happy. We as individuals can contribute to a green, clean environment in more ways than you might expect.
The Last Straw
Did you know plastic straws are one of the most widespread environmental hazards? According to the article “Straws: Why They Seriously Suck,” more than 500 million straws are used daily in the U.S. Alone. They’re not biodegradable, and they can’t be recycled. But you can stop using them at home and/or switch to reusable straws. Carry reusable straws in your glove compartment and forgo the plastic in your next chocolate shake!
Stash Your Trash
The fact that how and where you dispose of your trash matters is an environmental no-brainer. You no doubt dispose of everything from paper to yard waste to bald tires. Dispose of those items the right way, recycling any- and everything you can via environmentally aware service providers like Tri-State Disposal. Many of these vendors will even supply dumpsters to safely dispose of large hauls.
Single out Single Use
Single-use items like sandwich bags and disposable razors represent a huge problem for the environment. You can reduce that problem by a) reusing single-use items, or not using them at all. There are, after all, so many sustainable alternatives: cloth shopping bags, ceramic go cups. You can even buy reusable sandwich wraps.
Douse the Old Wood Stove
Wood stoves generate carcinogenic particulate matter that can harm not only your family, but the whole neighborhood. The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services lists wood stove smoke as a public health hazard and significant pollutant. The solution? Replace your old stove with an EPA-certified, clean-burning, efficient wood stove designed for complete combustion.
Add Your Plants
On the positive side, you can add to the planet’s environmental health by plugging in trees and native plants. Not only are they pretty, but they help clean the air. Plus, native plants—i.e., those native to your particular area—conserve water and benefit local wildlife.
The bottom line is that the environment in which we live is important. It is not just for the health of the area, but for our own personal health as well. We are all responsible to protect and keep the environment clean as much as possible.