Sustainable Practices for Us All
Since 1970, we celebrate Earth Day each year on April 22nd. Most people know about Earth Day by now (or at least we hope they do!). They spread the word on social media and adopt some cleaner living principles into their daily routines … if only for a short time. But many don’t know how this modern environmental movement began or how we can incorporate more sustainable practices into our daily lives.
A Brief History of Earth Day
In the decades prior to the first Earth Day, air pollution surrounded us – from the smoke of factories to the leaded gas emissions of the inefficient cars we drove. With the antiquated perspectives born out of the industrial revolution, this actually meant success in many ways. Look at how far we’ve come! But not everyone felt that way. Others were more concerned about the well-being of all living organisms than how many cars and products we could produce. They were also beginning to see the stark alignment between an increase in pollution and a decrease in health. And in the 1960s, their collective influence began to be heard around the country – first as whispers and then as a louder call to action.
In 1970, Earth Day provided the voice to this environmental consciousness in the United States. Twenty years later, environmental issues were propelled to the global stage as Earth Day garnered support from 141 countries and 200 million people. Now, it has nearly taken on a life of its own. According to the Earth Day website, “[t]oday, Earth Day is widely recognized as the largest secular observance in the world, marked by more than a billion people every year as a day of action to change human behavior and create global, national and local policy changes.”
In 2022, there is a new emphasis on our social and environmental responsibilities – a renewed sense of unrest and desire for reform that we haven’t seen in decades. People are no longer willing to settle. They are demanding more, and corporations are finally responding with more corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategies and increased accountability. But their actions, along with our own, must be sustainable to have the larger impact we all want. The question for many though is … how?
How to Incorporate Sustainable Practices
Sustainable practices are founded on knowledge. We must educate ourselves (and our teams, if applicable) not only about using the right resources, but why they are the right ones. It’s important to understand the reasoning behind them, so they don’t become tasks to merely check off the list, but something people can get behind. And now, more than ever, people want to invest their time, energy, and money into something in which they believe.
We’ve compiled a few sustainable practices that can be used at home or in the office (or in between) to help us celebrate, and preserve, our own well-being and our beautiful Earth at the same time:
- Consider transportation options. While many people don’t think this is a choice, it is. You may not be close enough to walk or ride a bike to your destination (and if you are, great!), but could you use public transportation or carpool with others at times?
- Take the stairs. Not only does it reduce the energy used by elevators, but it also provides some truly great health benefits.
- Skip traveling to that conference. We’ve seen firsthand over the past two years that many meetings that would have required extensive travel can be done via Zoom or other video conferencing platforms.
- Reduce paper. Electronic versions of documents get the same data and information across – just without all the clutter and waste.
- Print efficiently. Printing double-sided helps to save paper when you do need hard copies.
- Recycle. Paper, plastic, and aluminum should never go in the trash.
- Reduce energy use. Unplug electronic devices and equipment when not in use, use a power strip, and look for more energy-efficient electronics and appliances.
- Use reusable water bottles. We all know how important water is to our health, but how we drink that water can become a sustainable practice. Instead of using disposable bottles, use a refillable one that you can use over and over. And when you go to fill that water, Nikken can help, as it has extended its offer through April – four Special PiMag® Water Packs to double your benefits. According to Nikken, “Each pack has two state-of-the-art PiMag® products that not only hydrate, but they also help lower exposure to contaminants and make water more alkaline and less acidic. Alkaline water enhances negative oxidation-reduction potential (ORP) to boost water’s ability to act as an antioxidant.” Now, through April 30th, when you purchase one at the regular price, you can get the second at 50% off.
This year’s theme for Earth Day is “Invest in our Planet.” We’d like to take that a step further and say that investing in our planet starts with investing in ourselves. This #NationalEarthDay, this month, and most importantly, all year long, remember to strengthen your “investments” by taking better care of yourself, your community, and the world around you.
For more information about clean living, please schedule a call. I’d be happy to help guide you along your path to an even better version of you.
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