Small steps to celebrate Earth Day regularly

By DANIELLE DEANGELIS
On April 21, 2021

Photo courtesy of Sandie Clarke, Unsplash

It’s always important to be environmentally conscious, but as Earth Day approaches us this Thursday, why not do our part in making more sustainable or nature friendly decisions? 

Here are five fun and easy things you can do this spring to raise self awareness and to help our planet.

  1. Take a Walk and Pick Up Litter

Enjoy the nature and the April breeze by taking a walk around your neighborhood. Walking with a pet, family, friends or by yourself is a great form of exercise and socialization. 

While you are walking, take a look around: do you notice any trash on the ground? Bring a bag with you and collect any garbage that has been misplaced or littered. At the end of your walk, dispose of the trash at home or in a local bin.

  1. Invest in Sustainable Products

Did you know that over 359 million metric tons of plastic is produced each year? Plastic products aren’t made to break down in a landfill, which is where the majority of these products end up.

Plastic toothbrushes and straws are a challenge to recycle, so by changing to alternatives such as bamboo toothbrushes and metal straws, reduces waste that is nearly impossible to biodegrade.

  1. Go Thrift Shopping

Much of the fashion industry has a damaging effect on the environment. Fast fashion clothing companies are the second highest consumers of water and cause nearly 10% of global carbon emissions. Retailers like Forever 21, H&M, GAP, Fashion Nova and Boohoo are examples of brands that value cheap over clean.

While it is trendy, it’s also environmentally friendly: thrift for spring and summer fashion trends! Thrift stores are just as, if not more, affordable than these fast fashion brands, and you will be buying one-of-a-kind pieces to add to your unique wardrobe.

  1. Explore the Outdoors and Support Local Businesses

There are so many seasonal outdoor activities you can do as the weather becomes warmer, especially in New Jersey. Hiking, visiting the beach and checking out nearby parks are all pleasant activities that can be shared with any sort of company.

Other outdoor activities such as visiting local farms and farmers' markets are a great way to support local businesses, which is extremely important during the post-COVID financial crisis. Help out nearby shops and sellers when you can!

  1. Join a Club Focused on Environmental Justice

Ramapo College prides itself on the environmental and sustainability programs and clubs that are active on campus. Most famously, Ramapo Green is the head organizer of sustainable practices on campus.

Clubs and campus groups that prioritize a greener campus include 1STEP, Garden Club, Beekeeping Club, SGA’s sustainability committee, the president’s committee for campus sustainability and the newly established Sunrise RCNJ.

Reach out to one of these clubs or organizations on social media or by email to learn more about their mission, and attend a meeting to experience their goals and accomplishments first-hand. 

Our campus was raised on efforts towards a sustainable environment, so by being physically active and learning about the earth’s needs, you are fully doing your part to creating a more environmentally conscious campus society.

 

ddeange1@ramapo.edu

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