Five ways to make an impact on Earth Day while keeping your distance socially
By Mati Bishop
Earth Day 2020 is going to be one of the best that the environment has ever had. With so much of the world under lock down and travel restrictions, reports of wildlife and environmental recovery are coming in nearly every day. Turtles are spawning on beaches they have not been to in years. Decreased pollution has allowed people to see views of the Himalayas not seen in over 30 years. Wildlife is returning to parts of National Parks and forests that are usually full of people. One of the bright sides of the COVID-19 outbreak is that we are seeing what we can do to help delicate areas of our planet recover from over population and overuse by humans.
Despite the good news, there is still more that can be done. Here are five things that you can do to further help the environment while you are social distancing.
- Plant a tree or two on your property
According to the Fruit Tree Planting Foundation, a single fruit tree can remove up to 800 pounds of carbon dioxide from the air every year and produce up to 260 pounds of oxygen. If you are supplementing your diet with home grown fruit, you are also reducing the amount of fuel needed to transport the fruit you eat to your home, which means fewer carbon dioxide emissions.
- Start or Enhance Your Garden
It is estimated that the average meal in the United States has about 1491 miles worth of travel from farm to factory to plate involved in it. All of those miles generate carbon dioxide emissions and often mean that produce needs to be picked unripe and exposed to gasses to ripen them after transport. Planting a garden in your yard and growing some of your own food is rewarding, affordable and helps to reduce the impact of your meals on the planet.
- Eat More Game
Farmed meat requires large amounts of resources in the form of feed and transportation to produce. Eating locally harvested wild game meat reduces the amount of waste involved in the production of your meals and according to outdoorlife.com has more protein and fewer calories per ounce than beef. We live in an area that is full of wild meat harvest options ranging from fishing, to turkey hunting to deer and elk. Take advantage of it and help reduce your footprint.
4.Clean Up a Wild Place
There are places all over Lincoln County where humans have left trash both intentionally and unintentionally. Taking some time to find and clean up messes that are on public lands can help native plants and wildlife recover more quickly and make it nicer for humans to appreciate the outdoors as well.
- Donate to a Good Cause
If you can’t get out yourself to make a difference this Earth Day, you can help fund organizations that are working to make a difference. Find an organization that is doing work you care about and support them. Even if you can’t donate much money, including some words of support and posting about the organization on social media can help them get energized about their mission and spread the word.
Doing a good dead for the environment can help take your mind off other troubles going on in the world and help create the future that you want to see for your community. Happy Earth Day.