As the debate over climate change rages on around the world, one thing that we can all be certain of is that our planet is suffering due to the actions of its most destructive inhabitants, humans. Effects of our race are evident everywhere you look, from air pollution in major cities, to water shortages in areas of major population, to the loss of polar ice caps and rising sea levels. While there are currently ongoing movements being lead by activists around the globe, until we as a civilization are able to change our lifestyles and methods of production we remain on a path to cause more harm than good to the Earth. Help make a change for our planet by checking out some of these lifestyle changes that can help make a real difference.

Leave the Car at Home

While one of the simplest lifestyle changes one can make to leave a positive impact on the environment, being able to jump in your car to go anywhere, whenever you want, has become the normal in most developed countries. Out of the major nations, the USA has nearly 25% more automobiles on the road than the next closest country, Australia. Leaving the car at home does so much more for the environment than reduce emissions and save you some money in gas. It could save billions of trees from tire production, as well as natural habitats that are disrupted for oil drilling. Next time the weather looks good, throw on some comfy shoes and get out and enjoy a walk through Mother Nature.

cars

Image via Capitol Record

Become a Conscious Consumer

As Americans, we are often referred to as a “throw-away society.” This consumer mentality that we have developed is never more noticeable to us at Cali Carting than during the upcoming holiday season. As you shop for gifts this year, put an extra thought into how much packaging a product has, and if that packaging will end up in a landfill or if it can be recycled. Another area to look at is where the product was produced. Local items require very little resources to make it from manufacturing to the shelf, while items made in other parts of the world often travel in on ships and trains, which consume a great amount of natural resources and produce a significantly great amount of emissions along the way.

Eat Smarter

As bizarre as it may sound, your breakfast, lunch, and dinner may be playing a role in greenhouse gas emissions that are depleting the Ozone. Many of us may not like to think about it, but the cold glass of milk, the oozy grilled cheese, and the delicious steak that you consume comes from one of the major sources of greenhouse gases, cows. As cows eat, they release methane gas, which has a 23x greater effect on the atmosphere than the CO2 that your car produces. With over 1.5 billion livestock grazing 30% of the earth’s surface, the world’s cows produce over 2 billion tons of CO2-equivalent emissions per year…more than 1.5 times the emissions of all of the cars and trucks in the USA in 2014! Look to reduce your dependency on milk and beef and mix in some more sustainable proteins, like fish.

cows

Image via Flickr

Make Changes in and around the Home

Everyone leaves a light on once in a while, and in perspective, that one light isn’t going to make much of a difference in the health of the environment. One way to make your footprint a little bit smaller is to go around your home and pick out the 6-10 lights that you use, or leave on, the most, and replace them with energy-efficient LED light bulbs. These bulbs produce significantly less heat, and over time can provide significant savings on your energy bill. One of the best ways to reduce your energy consumption in the home is to get out of your home! Shut off all the lights and TVs and get outside and enjoy nature.

While it’s going to take more than just you walking to work or changing some light bulbs, if you pass this article on to 5 friends or family members, and they pass it on to 5 more, we can make a small difference in our community and for our planet. Do you have any other ways that you like to “go green” at home or throughout your day? Leave them in the comments below!