Where to begin with my thoughts on Earth Day?
I might start by pointing out the obvious – if we want to keep our planet habitable, and avoid a climate crisis, then we really should start seeing every day as Earth Day.
Growing up, we don’t learn much about the Earth and how precious it is; the way it sustains us and how we can give back to it, the changes it has taken to survive for billions of years before us, or how human progression (is it still progression at this point?) has started destroying it. Or at least, I wasn’t taught any of that at my school. People need to do their own research for everything, and therein lies the problem.
The way I see it is: you can dedicate your life to growing and learning and diving into knowledge you didn’t know you needed, or you can choose to live in the dark. But choosing the latter means others pay the price.
It is no wonder young people are crying out, and becoming the voices of change. Some are already tired of what they are seeing and reading. Some just don’t care, or don’t think it’s their problem.
And that’s where Earth Day is great. It opens people’s eyes to things they wouldn’t otherwise go looking for. Information and guides to making the planet a better one.
Some of the initiatives individuals and companies alike take for this can have huge positive effects on the Earth. And like me, there are folks out there still talking about it which keeps it in the limelight. Because once the initiatives stop, and people forget about Earth Day until next year, they won’t think twice about going back to their lives and harming the planet once more.
Greenwashing on Earth Day
Granted, the main culprits are not you nor I. The criminals in polluting the Earth are big corporations, governments and rich individuals. Those who see money as the only valuable thing in the universe. It would take too much time and energy to drawl on about how messed up the people at the top are and what they have been getting away with in this post. So I turn my attention to companies that greenwash for Earth Day.
You have the fast fashion industry and car manufacturers campaigning to protect the Earth on April 22nd whilst simultaneously making it a worse place to live for humans and animals alike. And there are millions of gullible people out there eating it up. Not seeing the bigger picture. I hope that, in the near future, greenwashing becomes something of a legal matter. Though there are laws in place about misleading the public, there needs to be tighter guidelines. Specifically around labelling products as sustainable, and harsher consequences for not complying.
Saying that, the good thing about the day for me was that many of the small businesses I follow showcased how they are doing their bit to go the extra mile for the Earth! Even though most of them are already sustainable and carbon-neutral/carbon-negative on any other day.
Plant-based for the planet
No doubt everyone has heard this one a few times this year, but we really aren’t lying when we say that the best way to care for the planet is by cutting out meat and dairy. Just reducing the amount of animal-based products we incorporate in our lives can have drastic effects.
I’m not here to convince anyone to go vegan, but I will leave the graph below for curious minds to have a look at. By eating plant-based, we can greatly reduce the amount of water we use, the emissions we put in the air, and the land we destroy! Not to mention, leave innocent beings to live their life in peace.
Just remember: doing your best is better than not trying at all.
Ideally, humans will find an alternative to plastic that will be less destructive on the Earth. But do we really believe we will live in a world without it? Plastic is everywhere. Even when you make a conscious attempt to avoid it, companies make it damn hard to live like that. Reducing the amount of plastic we buy is always a good idea, but we also need to keep speaking up about companies’ use of it, and put pressure on the people at the top to do more for the planet.
Plastic waste sites and using the ocean as a dump cannot continue. Wildlife and sealife have suffered enough, but what are we small people to do about it? It’s a frustrating situation.
Last year, I wrote this post about what I do to try and live more sustainably, and I always enjoy reading about other’s thoughts and actions because it reassures me that some people DO care.
I’ll finish this off by reiterating the main thought that plagues my mind when thinking about the Earth’s state and its future; we are doomed if more people don’t start taking action.
As I mentioned at the beginning, some humans just don’t want to see certain things, so they will spend their lives not thinking about it, or doing anything about it because it doesn’t affect them personally. And it is infuriating.
“In the age of information, ignorance is a choice.”Donny Miller
If everyone did their bit and stood up for our planet, I’m sure we would see more positive changes at a faster rate.
Cutting down on plastic and signing petitions is helpful, but I can’t help but think we could be doing more. What are your thoughts on this?
Until Next Time,