Take These 4 Steps to Save the Planet

When President Trump dropped out of the Paris Climate Agreement, I know that a lot of us were angry af. My social media feeds were flooded with angry posts condemning Trump, yet very few of these posts listed any action items. They didn’t offer any suggestions as to how we can personally take charge of our planet. Seeing the President of the United States disregard the devastating issue of climate change is very disheartening, I agree. However, the ultimate fate of our planet lies in our hands. No matter what our President believes, we can still save the planet with our actions.

If you’re wondering what you can do to make a difference, I have listed four EASY steps you can take to contribute to the environment. Sure, you may have to adjust some habits, and it might not be easy, but it’s up to us to protect Planet Earth. It is our duty to cut down on greenhouse gases and stop unsustainable practices in order for our planet to prosper and flourish.

Eat more plants

For months, I have been researching the health benefits of a vegan diet. I would try to convert to veganism, but immediately bounce back and eat meat a day later. That was when I learned about the environmental impact of animal agriculture. Livestock agriculture is the single most destructive thing that humans are doing to our planet. The carbon emissions of livestock account for 51% of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The single best thing to do for our environment is to give up meat.

Now, I do not identify as a vegan, nor will I ever. I find that labeling your lifestyle happens allows more room for judgement. My absolute favorite food is sushi, and I do not foresee a way I will ever be able to give up fish cold turkey. However, eating fish once in a while is better than eating meat for every meal. If you are committed to our environment, I would encourage you to start cutting out meat for one meal a day—it’s better than nothing! You can then decide if you want to progress further into the plant-based lifestyle.

Opt for reusable

There’s nothing I hate more than a disposable water bottle. Reusable water bottles are more environmentally-friendly, more cost-efficient, and MUCH more cute. I don’t see disposable water bottles as much as I used to because of the upsurge of S’well bottles, but if you don’t want to shell out $40 for a water bottle that you will probably lose, there are plenty of more affordable options at Amazon that do the same thing. I got mine at Bed Bath and Beyond because I randomly had a Bed Bath and Beyond gift card. It keeps my water cold all day, and it’s in a pink marble pattern, which makes me actually want to use it. I also haven’t lost it yet—win, win, win.

Additionally, make the switch from plastic grocery bags to reusable. I’m currently living at home with a family of four people and I have been tirelessly trying to get them to convert to reusable bags. It’s a smart, simple step that we can all take towards a healthier planet. I’ll keep you updated on my progress with my family—it’s been a hopeless case so far.

Walk it/bike it/train it

Alright, if your job is 30 miles away like mine is, it makes sense that you wouldn’t want to bike to work. However, if you take advantage of every opportunity to cut down on carbon emissions, you will do both yourself and the environment a favor. Meeting up with a friend after work? Skip the Uber and walk instead. Take the train, bike, whatever it is you do. You’ll get a workout and show some love to the planet at the same time.

Do your research

Like I said, I had NO idea the meat and dairy industries were so harmful to the environment before I did my research. If you want to make an impact, find ways to take action! Sharing an anger-ridden, anti-Trump Facebook post will do nothing but make you (and others) more upset. Figure out ways to help the environment that work for YOU. There are thousands of other things you can do other than those that are listed here. Show some love to the planet and it will show it back to you.