April 7, 2011

Earth Day Everyday

When I think about our current environmental challenges I often feel like this...

 However, I am optimistic enough to believe that people still have the ability to affect change.

The first Earth Day was founded on April 22, 1970 to bring about a better understanding of the affect we have on our planet, and calling us to take action to make positive environmental changes in our communities. Earth Day gives those people who have not taken part in recycling, repurposing, or reducing their carbon footprint the opportunity to make some important changes. 

We have made some significant lifestyle changes in our home such as eating food grown close to home, gardening, putting in a pellet stove, switching to compact flourscent lights, washing laundry in cold water and hanging clothes out to dry, along with recycling and composting as much as we possibly can. 
Because Earth Day is approaching, I started thinking about something additional we could do this year.

It might sound cliche, but this year for Earth day we are going to plant a tree.
Reasons why we should plant trees all over the world are...

•One tree, in its average 50-year lifetime, can clean up $62,000 of air pollution.
•Trees give us oxygen to breathe.  We give trees carbon dioxide, which they thrive upon.
•Trees recycle water, prevent soil erosion and provide homes for animals.
•Trees remove air pollution by lowering air temperature through respiration and by retaining particulates.
•Cities without trees are 'heat islands'. 100 million additional mature trees would save $2 billion per year in energy costs (National Arbor Day Foundation).
•A windbreak can lower home heating bills 10 - 20% and shade trees planted east and west of your home can cut cooling costs 15% - 35%.
How are you celebrating Earth Day this year...or every day? I would love to hear...
Happy Earth Day!

1 comment:

Dar said...

I love this entry Ruta! Some of the things we have done include low energy lighting, turning lights off as we leave the room, unplugging all of the excess power supplies such as our chargers for the laptops, cameras, video equipment, cell phones, when not in demand. We already had recycled water long before being green was cool, for our houseplants, gardens and even for garden tool clean-up. Tall trees bless our home on the west and south sides of the house, providing shade and warmth, per season and our gardens grow all of our veggies and some fruit for our food supply for the past 30-some years. What has become a necessity for our world, we have been trying to do all of our lives, for the necessity of our own survival...growing up on a farm has given strong roots. One thing we would still like to do is to put wind generated power in for our home and cabin as well as solar panels.
Retirement comes next year and we want to be prepared for a comfortable one. Research is in full force. Doing without all of the electronics would suit me fine. I would, however, miss my computer. We will see what we can do about that with the wind.