Earth Day is here again, friends. And while every day is a great day to celebrate this beautiful and wondrous planet of ours, Friday, April 22, 2022, is an especially good time to recommit yourself to starting new habits and dedicating yourself to a greener lifestyle.
Yes, saving the earth may seem challenging at times. If enough of us make adjustments in our everyday lives, we can effect change. Whether you are celebrating your first Earth Day or you’ve been attending Earth Day events for years, there might be something new.
To help inspire you, we’ve put together a list of 20 ways to celebrate Earth Day and keep our planet happier and healthier. So let’s get to it!
1. Plant Something for Pollinators
As you’ve probably already heard, the population of bees, butterflies and other pollinators has been declining for some years now. Why is that so important? These insects pollinate more than one-third of the world’s food supply and form the basis of our entire ecosystem!
To put it simply: no pollinators mean no food! The good news is that even one pollinator plant or tree can make a difference.
Here are just a few plants to consider putting in your garden:
- Wild Marjoram
Remember, these are just a few plants to consider, but there are many more for you to explore to make your garden a more beautiful and planet-friendly place for our all-important pollinators!
2. Think Global. Buy Local! (Fruits and Veggies)
Did you know that produce from the grocery store travels an average of 1,500 miles? And all those miles add up to more fuel consumption and more pollution.
To help offset your carbon footprint and support local farmers, buy your fruits and veggies at the local farmer’s market. Plus, wandering around outdoors as you shop is a beautiful way to spend the day!
3. Buy a Water Filter for Your Kitchen Faucet
Our concern about tap water has pushed many of us into drinking bottled water. But even if you recycle the bottles you’re using; it’s important to remember that over 1.5 million barrels of oil per year are needed to manufacture those bottles in the first place. Yikes.
To help cut down on plastics, try buying a water filter for your kitchen sink. This one from Brita is a snap to install and filters out 99% of harmful chemicals such as lead, chlorine and asbestos.
4. Buy a Reusable Water Bottle
Buying a reusable water bottle is another great way to cut down on plastics. Personally, I love my Hydro Flask. It prevents me from buying single-use plastics while I’m out and about and keeps my drink cool.
(And FYI, 60 million plastic bottles end up in landfills and incinerators everyday!)
5. Try a Small-Scale Cleanup
Do you have a favorite park, lake, trail or beach where you like to spend time? Then you’ve probably noticed the inevitable stray pieces of trash that linger about. To celebrate Earth Day, keep your communal spaces beautiful by doing a small-scale cleanup.
Just bring along a bag and spend an hour collecting any trash that needs to go. And don’t forget to recycle those single-use plastics. Your happy place will look better than ever when you’re done, and you’ll also feel more beautiful on the inside!
6. Change a Lightbulb
Yes, celebrating Earth Day can literally be as easy as changing a lightbulb. Swapping out your incandescent bulbs for LEDs will save your energy and help the planet. LED bulbs also last an average of 25,000 hours compared to 1000 hours of incandescent bulbs, so you won’t have to change them very often.
Yep, it’s an all-around bright idea!
7. Plant a Tree
Planting a tree may be one of the first ways you think of to Celebrate Earth Day so let us remind you why that’s such a wonderful idea:
- Trees fight climate change by absorbing carbon dioxide from the air and releasing oxygen.
- Trees prevent soil erosion and water runoff.
- Trees help to keep your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.
- Trees are said to increase your home’s value by up to 15%.
- Trees provide food and shelter for birds, pollinators and other creatures.
- Trees are simply beautiful and can reduce stress and anxiety.
And, finally, a tree is a gift that we can leave for future generations!
8. Give Up Meat for the Day
Okay, maybe you’re not ready to go full vegan. But giving up meat even a day or two a week can make a difference to our planet. Why?
Livestock production creates more greenhouse gasses than the entire transportation sector. It’s also contributing to the deforestation of the planet as more and more land is cleared to make way for cattle. And did you know that it takes 425 gallons of water to produce one quarter-pound beef burger?
Yes, there’s no denying that eating meat is affecting our planet. So help take a bite out of pollution by chomping on a veggie burger instead!
9. Cancel Your Catalogs
Another super simple way to celebrate Earth Day is to cancel all of your catalogs. If you think that’s not a big deal, you should know that over 100 million trees are cut down every year to produce them and other junk mail.
You can go to catalogchoice.org to get your name off of those pesky mailing lists. Let’s keep our trees in the ground and out of your mailbox!
10. Ride Your Bike or Carpool
As we all know, cars create carbon emissions that contribute to pollution and global warming. So the fewer cars on the road, the better.
Instead, try biking or walking to places if you can. Carpooling to work is another great alternative, as is public transportation. Even if you can’t manage it every day, leaving your car in the driveway just a few days a week can help!
11. Green Up Your Wardrobe
Vintage is in everybody. And buying used clothing is not only cool but also helps the planet because no new materials are used in the process. If you can’t find what you’re looking for at the thrift shop, try buying vegan clothes or pieces that are made from sustainable materials.
There’s more than one way to keep yourself and the planet looking good!
12. Invest in Reusable Bags
Plastic bags are not recyclable. In America alone, it’s been estimated that we use 100 billion plastic bags a year! And that translates to 12 million barrels of oil. Ooph.
Instead, invest in some reusable bags for your produce and pack the rest of your groceries. Besides, with all the cute reusable bags out there, they’re way more stylish than plastic!
13. Change Your Kitchen and Household Products
So many of our household and kitchen products are made with chemicals that can be harmful to the planet and to us. The good news is that it’s super simple to switch them out for environmentally friendly versions.
Nowadays, you can find everything from compostable bags, chemical-free parchment paper, recycled aluminum foil, natural cleaners, soaps, laundry detergent and more! Check out this line from If You Care, and you’ll see that there’s a solution to just about everything.
14. Invest in a Rain Barrel
Hey, gardeners, this one’s for you! As we all know, water is a precious resource that we can’t afford to waste. That’s why buying a water barrel is a smart way to keep your garden and the planet greener.
With rain barrels, you can collect water from your gutters, roof and the sky. Then you can save it up for a not-so-rainy day! Your plants will love you for it.
15. Keep Chemicals Out of Your Garden
And while we’re on the subject of gardening, Earth Day is also a good time to commit to using natural methods and products in your yard and vegetable patch.
Consider companion planting and natural remedies to eliminate unwanted insects and educate yourself about bugs that are actually good for your garden.
And instead of using chemical fertilizers, try making your own compost with food scraps and clippings from your yard. Those coffee grounds, leftover veggies, leaves and weeds are like gardening gold, so why send them to a landfill?
All you need is a collection bin in your kitchen and a place to let it all decay in your yard. It’s more economical and better for the planet. And it could help turn your own garden into a little piece of Eden!
16. Calculate Your Carbon Footprint
Knowledge is power. Especially knowledge about your carbon footprint. What is that exactly? It’s the total amount of greenhouse gasses generated by our actions—and driving, traveling, using the clothes dryer, and many other things contribute.
By calculating our carbon footprint, we can find the sources of our biggest emissions and take steps to reduce them. Check out this carbon footprint calculator to get started.
You might be surprised how much air pollution one person can contribute.
17. Use Your Voice
If there’s an environmental issue you’re fired up about, let your opinion be known by contacting your local representative or senator. An email may seem like a small step, but we can produce long-term change if enough people reach out.
If there’s an important vote about the environment coming up, be sure to tell your congressman or woman how you would like them to vote. And, of course, getting more people from your community to do the same can have an even bigger effect.
You never know the kind of change you can effect unless you try. And reaching out with an email or phone call is something we can all do. There are different rallies throughout the entire year, depending on where you live.
From supporting the Clean Air Act to the Endangered Species Act to the Clean Water Act, plenty of initiatives would love an extra voice.
18. Make a Donation or Volunteer
If you’re in the position to do so, a financial contribution to a non-profit organization is a thoughtful way to honor Earth Day. Whether you’re concerned about forest preservation, clean water, protecting wildlife or pollution, there’s an organization that could use your help.
Or, if you have the time to do so, you can also volunteer. Remember, every little bit we contribute counts! Plus, there are fun activities like
19. Get Kids Involved
Ultimately, the future of our planet rests in the hands of our children. That’s why it’s important to include your kids in any activity you choose to do. Whether it’s cleaning up a park, planting a tree, making a bird feeder or anything else you choose, your concern about the planet will impress your little ones.
You can also volunteer or even start school programs for recycling or gardening. A little education at the right moment in a child’s life can long-term affect our environment. A great place to check would be your local children’s museum, university campus or your local gov website. There could be activities to celebrate earth week and get young ones involved in an environmental movement throughout the week.
20. Spend Time Outdoors
Last but definitely not least, treat yourself to some time in the great outdoors. After all, Earth Day is about appreciating this incredible planet.
So go for a walk in the park, hike up into the mountains, take a picnic to the lake or just take a few deep breaths in your own backyard. Nature can both inspire and heal us. And when we spend time reveling in the wonders of this world, it’s a great reminder that we also need to take care of our amazing home.
As you can see, there are so many ways to enjoy your Earth Day celebration. And even our smallest action can have a big effect over time. That’s why it’s so important to celebrate our planet on April 22nd and all year long. While this is typically a holiday celebrated by Americans, we think everyone worldwide should get behind some community earth day activities!
Whether you decide to recycle, ride your bike, change to healthier household products, eat less meat or anything else, be sure to carry through with your plan for the rest of the year.
Your actions can help the planet and also inspire other people to do the same. And as you know, we’re all in this together.
So go ahead and help a butterfly flap its wings, plant trees in your local park or consciously reuse something instead of throwing it away. It may inspire a tidal wave of change, and you can start to invest in our planet throughout the year. Nobody ever looks down on ways to help restore our earth. Remember, there is no planet b!
You might also be interested in: Eco-Friendly Ways To Reduce Your Waste
20 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day:
- Plant Something for Pollinators
- Think Global. Buy Local! (Fruits and Veggies)
- Buy a Water Filter for Your Kitchen Faucet
- Buy a Reusable Water Bottle
- Try a Small-Scale Cleanup
- Change a Lightbulb
- Plant a Tree
- Give Up Meat for the Day
- Cancel Your Catalogs
- Ride Your Bike or Carpool
- Green Up Your Wardrobe
- Invest in Reusable Bags
- Change Your Kitchen and Household Products
- Invest in a Rain Barrel
- Keep Chemicals Out of Your Garden
- Calculate Your Carbon Footprint
- Use Your Voice
- Make a Donation or Volunteer
- Get Kids Involved
- Spend Time Outdoors