Individual Climate Steps You Can Easily Add into Your Daily Life to Make an Impact
Updated: Sep 10, 2020
Are you someone who cares about the climate crisis and don’t have a lot of time or money to devote to addressing it? No worries. There are many steps you can easily incorporate into what you are already doing in your daily life.
Some simple shifts in how and what you do will make a difference and sometimes save you money too.
The chart at the end of the post outlines a wide range of specific actions you can take in different areas of your life, depending on your areas of interest. If you can only implement a few of these at a time, that is fine. I suggest you start with the categories that Project Drawdown ranks highest. (You can read more about them in this blog post). They include:
1. Refrigerants: Properly repair and dispose of refrigerants at the end of appliances’ useful lives. They rank this category as the most impactful. Roughly 60% of HFC emissions result from fridges and AC units leaking.
2. Renewable Energy: Sign up for renewable energy–either Wind or Solar–with your local electricity company or alternative provider. Many utilities now offer an option to purchase wind or solar energy at competitive pricing. More areas around the country also allow for community solar projects in which the public can take part.
3. Food Waste: Reduce the amount of food you waste. This is the third overall most impactful action, according to Project Drawdown. There are many ways to lessen the amount of food you throw away, including buying less and eating smaller portions.
4. Plant Rich Diet: Eat more vegetable-based proteins and less meat. You don’t have to stop eating meat all together. Reducing it will make a difference.
5. Women and Girls: Support the education of girls and the rights of women in low-income countries to family planning. When girls go to school, later they have fewer children and produce more income for the family. The best way to contribute is to make donations to non-profits who are working on the ground in the communities where education and family planning are most needed.
6. Forests: Restore and protect forests of all kind by planting trees and making donations to rainforest protection in the tropics. Trees are a natural carbon sink as they remove carbon from the air in the process of “breathing.”
7. Home Efficiency: Make your home energy efficient by insulating, using LED light bulbs, cleaning filters on appliances and HVAC systems, and unplugging appropriate devices when not in use.
8. Transportation: Limit the amount of air and car travel you make by telecommuting, using shared ride services and mass transit, and walking when possible.
9. Consumption: Reduce, reuse, recycle. Simplify your life and buy less. Refrain from using single-use items, especially plastics which are made from fossil fuels and harm our water ways. Buy products from companies that support recycling and upcycling of their products.
10. Finance: Move your bank accounts and credit cards from large banks, which finance fossil fuel companies to credit unions or local banks. Green America has many resources for finding a better bank.
11. Elections: Vote for local, state and national candidates who have both a climate and social justice record and/or platform.
12. Education: Educate yourself, your friends, and your family about the wide array of climate solutions and organizations doing work to address the climate crisis. Since you’re reading this blog you already on your way!
Which of these twelve steps are you already taking?
Which ones will you start doing now?
I’d love to know what’s grabbing your attention or what questions are running through your mind. Let me know in the comments section. I’ll respond in one of my blog posts.
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All the best, Krista / Eco-Omi
Actions for Nest Tenders.
See this blog post to learn more about Nest Tenders). They are individuals who want to focus on steps in their daily lives and don’t have a lot of time or money to devote to addressing the climate crisis.
Note: You can print the chart below on 11x17 paper and use it to guide the climate steps you take. You can check off specific actions you are already doing and note which additional steps you will start taking now.