According to leading environmental organization WWF (World Wide Fund) states that our world is changing faster than anyone has predicted. Already, freshwater supplies are shrinking, agricultural yields are dropping, our forests are burning, and rising oceans are more acidic, all, in part, due to a warming climate. As our natural world changes around us, so does our way of life. Coastal home values drop as insurance premiums rise, drought reduces feed for American farmers’ cattle and water for their crops, more pollen and dust in the air aggravates asthma and allergies in kids and adults alike.”
Knowing global warming is an urgency as stated by worldwide scientists all over, there is a consensus amongst scientists that the earth’s climate is warming and to a frightening scale as illustrated below.
“Multiple studies published in peer-reviewed scientific journals1 show that 97 percent or more of actively publishing climate scientists agree* Climate-warming trends over the past century are extremely likely due to human activities. – NASA/ Scientific Consensus
We need to take action now before it is too late, so what are the 5 easy steps that you can implement in your daily life?
When possible, walk or ride your bike in order to avoid carbon emissions completely. Carpooling and public transportation drastically reduce CO2 emissions by spreading them out over many riders. – Cotap.org
Tip: Next time you plan your weekend trip, what about skipping the car and taking a train on a weekend getaway instead. When planning for a weeks grocery supply walk or use your bike instead of taking the car or the bus + bring your partner to help you carry the bags.
Stop eating (or Eat Less) Meat. The single most effective action you can take to combat climate change is to stop eating meat. Why? The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations released a conservative report wherein they stated that animal agriculture causes about 18 percent of current greenhouse gas emissions. To put this into perspective: animal agriculture is responsible for more climate change gases than every car, boat, train and airplane on the planet, combined. Red meat is particularly to blame, consuming 11 times more water and producing 5 times more emissions than its poultry counterparts.
You need to watch this! Philip Wollen addresses the St James Ethics and the Wheeler Centre debate
Philip Wollen: Animals Should Be Off The Menu debate
You don’t have to become a vegetarian, but eating meat less frequently (the average American eats 8.5 ounces of meat per day!) will significantly help the environment. To get a single pound of beef, it takes over 5,000 gallons of water – as the number one consumer of freshwater in the world, animal agriculture is drastically increasing the problem of water scarcity. Don’t forget to inform others: many people simply don’t know about the connection between meat and climate change.- Huffington Post
Tip: Have you tried Meatless Monday? it is a popular trend worldwide. You can try the savory recipes from their website here and as a bonus treat, they have recently joined the Global Climate Action Summit.
3. The Textile Industry
You may wonder how fashion relates to greenhouse emission? According to Greenpeace, the dyeing process in the fashion industry uses 1.7 million tons of various chemicals in the entire process including hazardous chemicals like PFCs (class of chemicals used to repel oil and water from clothing, toxic in consumption), heavy metals, ammonia, phthalates, and formaldehyde. – Greenpeace
Tip: Many women have a closet full of clothes they are not wearing, what about giving some bags of clothes to your nearest donation bin. This way we help to reduce our carbon footprint. In 2013 alone, Americans discarded 15.1 million tons of clothing and other textiles, and 85 percent of that wound up in landfills. Clothes decompose, and as they do, they release landfill gas, a toxic brew of air pollutants that includes the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane.
Stop microplastic in our oceans!
My second mindful tip is to reduce microplastics in our ocean, did you know that microplastics released from textiles when washed are found in more than 1200 fish species? Try a Guppyfriend Bag next time to collect even the tiniest of microfibers.
4. Eat local and organic
There are numerous health benefits to eating organic and much better for our environment that we buy locally.
Fact 1: organic food production eliminates soil and water contamination. Since organic food production strictly avoids the use of all synthetic chemicals, it does not pose any risk of soil and underground water contamination like conventional farming which uses tons of artificial fertilizers and pesticides.
Fact 2: organic food production helps preserve local wildlife. By avoiding toxic chemicals, using of mixed planting as a natural pest control measure, and maintaining field margins and hedges, organic farming provides a retreat to local wildlife rather than taking it away from its natural habitat like conventional agriculture.
Fact 3: organic food production helps conserve biodiversity. Avoidance of chemicals and use of alternative, all natural farming methods have been shown to help conserve biodiversity as it encourages a natural balance within the ecosystem and helps prevent domination of particular species over the others.
Fact number 4 – organic food production helps the fight against global warming. Most organically produced food is distributed locally. As a result, less energy is used for transportation which automatically reduces carbon dioxide emissions which are believed to be the main cause of global warming. – Eostreorganics
Tip: Read labels. Tell the produce manager at your grocery store what you want and why.
5. Make your home and household energy efficient
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, more than half the electricity used in the United States comes from burning coal. DOE states that coal will continue to be the dominant fuel for power production for the foreseeable future. Natural gas, however, is gaining ground and may power up to 90 percent of the power plants built in the next 20 years. Unfortunately, both of these power sources emit greenhouse gases. That means every time you use electricity to heat or cool your house, you’re indirectly causing greenhouse gases to enter the atmosphere, adding to the greenhouse effect.
Tip: Remember to turn off the lights or you can also switch to LED light bulbs. switch off the TV, put on an extra layer of clothing if you are cold. Unplug unused electronics to minimize standby power consumption. Just lowering your heating by some degrees can help make an impact.
WWF has a Footprint Calculator which you can try to see how big your environmental footprint is.
Demand big corporations like Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Nestle, Unilever, Proctor & Gamle, Starbucks, and McDonald`s to do their part to end plastic pollution now on GreenPeace, sign the petition on their website here.
I made two infographics for you which you can share on your social media to help people live a more mindful life for our planets sake. You are free to share if you link back to my website http://www.mettayoga.net.
Thank you for stopping by. If you liked my post, make sure to leave a mindful* comment below or ask questions about whatever comes to your mind.
Thank you for reading!
With loving kindness,
Tiaga Nihal Kaur.