“One person can make a difference.” Our parents said it, our leaders say it, and it’s pretty much a universal concept that has been engrained in our minds. In fact, it’s so deep in there that sometimes we find it to be untrue. “Me?” you may ask yourself. “Well I’m not rich or famous or influential.” While the first two may be true, the last one is definitely wrong. We can all influence our lives, our environment, and the people around us. We don’t need to build the next alternative-energy powerhouse or pull thousands of kilograms of waste out of the sea alone, there are a lot of small things that can help out the waterways we play in, and in which the animals we visit live. They’re easy, but everyone could use a reminder!
We know, we know… you’re very informed and familiar with our planet, Earth, but are you familiar enough with Earth to have picked up that the cover photo for this article isn’t a picture of our blue planet, but a terraformed Mars by artist Daein Ballard?
Pick it Up When You See It
It’s easy enough. When you see trash, pick it up. The beaches are littered with waste in a lot of the world, be part of the solution. There are plenty of beach cleanups available as well! Every piece of trash in the bin is a piece of trash not in the stomach of an animal.
We’ve been recycling for a long time, and that’s amazing, but what’s even better is reusing. Turn the old into the new, or use new things that will replace the things in life that become garbage eventually. There are a lot of options these days for water bottles, straws, and utensils that you can take with you on the go.
Tell Your Friends
We know we’re addicted to the ocean, and with that, a lot of us are aware of what we can do to help out. That said, we probably all have that friend who has left a beer bottle in the sand or simply let that take-out plate fly away. When you see it, call it out. Be that annoying one, it’s for the good of the Earth. (Probably don’t be like the guy in the video. That’s comedy.)
Going to the store? Get in shape and stop dangerous fumes and runoff by using your own energy instead of the resources we’re draining from the Earth. This may sound like something you’ve heard a million times, but hey, how about all of that oil and toxic waste in the sand you’re laying on?
How big is your house? That’s the amount of space you occupy. How about a car and its spot? Take it a bit further… how far do you have to go to get groceries? Where do they come from? A simple matter of how long it takes for you to get to things, and the other way around, can make a huge difference in your impact on the environment. In fact, cities are good for the environment because they keep a lot of us on a small patch of land.
– Todd Allen Williams, Senior Editor