10 simple ways to celebrate our planet every day
Today is Earth Day, an annual event celebrated on April 22, started in 1970 by the United Nations. The idea was to raise awareness politicians and citizens on ecology. Have we achieved this?
There’s enormous space for improvement, though we’re certain that today’s youth continue to surprise us. The movement started by Greta Thunberg, which is taking on parliaments and international institutions with firmness and heady passion, will take us far.
We can’t all be Greta, but it really wouldn’t take much for us to take better care of the planet in our daily lives, without completely changing all our habits. Just a few small steps in the right direction, and you won’t ever want to turn back. It really works!
1 Don’t waste!
We believe that food waste should be regulated with strict laws. It’s insane the way we throw energy, water, soil and labor in the bin, creating emissions and pollution for no good reason. We all know the facts about waste but we don’t get tired of repeating them: the amount of water necessary to produce all the food we throw away is equal to the flow of the River Volga. Isn’t that sickening? We’re talking about 1.3 BILLION tons of food waste a year. And what makes it worse? In the West, it’s the end user, the consumer who is responsible for the majority of this food waste. We need to be more careful, and less greedy. All too often we have eyes bigger than our stomach, and we don’t pay attention to what we have in the fridge!
2 Choose clean, local, small-scale products
You know that 70% of all emissions are created by just 100 companies? Do we need to say more? Yes, that someone with more power than we do should take drastic measures. In the meantime, we can shape the world through our choices. Wherever possible we should choose food that’s made with respect for nature. At first it may seem more expensive, but ask yourself: who’s paying for all the environmental, social and health-related costs caused by the “cheap” food that the multinationals sell?
3 Follow the seasons!
There’s not much to say here. It’s common sense. If our food doesn’t have to travel halfway round the world to get to our table, the planet benefits. We should try to eat the local food when it’s in season. In the words of our friend Luca Mercalli, “Eating strawberries in January is like drinking a glass of petrol.”
4 Avoid excessive packaging
Do we really need all that plastic film? It’s possible now, even in supermarkets, to choose products (soaps, flours, beans) without all that annoying packaging which we then have to throw away.
5 No more single-use plastic!
Small plastic drink bottles? Absolutely NOT!
6 Even fish has its season
Even the sea has its season. If you’re going to eat fish, inform yourself: what’s in season? Which fish should you avoid? The same arguments about fish imported from far-off waters apply.
7 Eat less meat, and of higher quality
It’s better for everyone: for you, for the animals that don’t have to live in dark, overcrowded conditions, and for the planet, which loses precious water and soil in raising meat for slaughter.
Avoid processed foods: they’re industrialized, plasticized, artificial. Have fun choosing your own ingredients and cooking up your own creations! You’ll produce less emissions and pollution, and enjoy better-tasting food. You’ll live longer, too!
Recycling should be taken for granted everywhere by now, and yet you still see people who don’t! Yes, this is a moral judgment against you lazy people who choose not to recycle: it costs you nothing, and benefits everyone!
10 Live with joy and appreciate the beauty of nature
The seaside, the countryside, the mountains: pass a little time in the open air, enjoy the beauty of the natural world. You can even gather some wild herbs in put point 8 into practice. You’ll see how easy it is to take better care of Planet Earth, and appreciate how much it matters.