The theme of this year’s Earth Month is Invest in Our Planet, and over the next few weeks, we will look at three different ways you can do exactly that.
The first, to reduce. And this means reducing everything; from how much we consume, how much energy we use, how much waste we throw away, how much we travel, and so on.
In terms of solving climate change, this really is the bottom line.
Let’s talk about consumerism. In our society, our role as a consumer is to buy more goods to help the system continue and create more and cheaper products.
This, however, helps preserve an unsustainable system that is destroying the planet and hurting communities.
Take a look at clothing as one example. Once upon a time, buying new clothes was expensive and only done if an old piece couldn’t be fixed.
Now, at least in developed countries, you can buy clothing incredibly cheaply. In theory, it seems like a good thing that more people can afford new clothes, but the reality isn’t quite so nice.
So many people now have more clothes than they actually need. When you look at that on a national or even a global scale, this demand has terrible consequences for people and the environment.
Fast fashion is now known as one of the most unsustainable industries in the world.
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Over time, the system we’re currently living in will simply no longer work. Not only are our resources finite, but economically it will also cost more money to fix in the long term.
For example, the cost of pollution from cars is that it causes breathing difficulties and is therefore already being picked up by the NHS.
Obviously, we have to meet our basic needs; to buy food and clothes, entertainment, financial products, broadband, and a whole host of other products and services.
Yet the most crucial part is that we use only what we need to and that when we do make a decision, we make sure it has the lowest, or maybe even a positive, environmental impact.
Simply put, it’s just being aware of the impact you’re having on the planet.
Changing can be as simple as making sure you turn the lights off when you leave the room, getting an old pair of shoes fixed instead of buying new ones, or choosing to be a vegetarian one day a week.
All of these little choices add up, and when we do them together, we are building a better future. One that is sustainable for many generations to come.