What does Environment Week mean to us here at Sustainable Outdoors Co.? Environment Week is an excellent time of year to continue to practice sustainable activities that will help reduce your personal impact on the environment. It is also another way to identify new activities in which you can partake in during the year to do your part in sustaining our wilderness. Here are six great ideas that you can do in your community:
- Roadside trash pickup
Although the title of this task sounds like great fun to most of us, roadside trash pickup is essential to not only making sure our communities look clean and clear but to also pickup liter that clutters our environment, posses a threat and hazard to our wildlife and that may end up affecting ground water, agriculture practices, etc. By taking some time to organize a community cleanup or heading out to do it on your own time, you really can make a difference picking up litter.
- Volunteer at a local conservation chapter
There are a lot of organizations out there that have chapters in which community members can volunteer their time during work days or to be sponsors/buy tickets and attend Gala dinners. Local chapters are a great way to become involved in your community in order to help organize events or just attend those events and support local efforts to conserve, preserve and enhance local wetlands, key parcels of land, water systems, etc. Being apart of these amazing organizations and volunteering your time to contribute to the ground work being laid is a rewarding experience. Jordan and I will be out cleaning a local creek on June 14th that supports 3 various species of Trout. This stream currently has log jams that negatively affect the stream channel by backing up sediment which cuts new stream routes. This is an excellent example of what local chapters do in order to make a difference in each given community.
- Practice renewable energy
It could just mean switching your home to environmentally friendly light bulbs that use less power (which in turn saves you more money on your hydro bills). There are a lot of different options out there nowadays to practice renewable energy. Some opportunities exist with the installation of solar panels on your roof, green roofs for a business building, wind power, electric cars, etc. But there is one thing everyone can do is to cut back on hydro. Replacing light bulbs with environmentally friendly bulbs, cutting back on air conditioning in the summer and extensive heating in the winter does make a difference if everyone practices a smarter use of our resources. Another significant item is to cut back your personal water consumption. Fresh water is something we take for granted in Canada but on a global scale, clean drinking water is becoming even more scarce.
- Bike, walk, carpool or take public transportation
A great way to reduce carbon emissions is to bike, walk, carpool or take public transportation. By engaging in one of the above activities you can not only save on gas but it will reduce your carbon footprint significantly. Use this week as a test pilot that will tell you which of the above is more realistic for you and your lifestyle in order to lead a more sustainable use of transportation which will cut back on carbon emissions in our environment.
- Buy locally grown products while grocery shopping
When you are at your local grocery store look for food products that are grown locally or head to your nearest food stand that grows everything local. By purchasing locally grown foods you are not only supporting your local economy but it also cuts down on transportation emissions significantly.
- Support companies with social responsibility
Companies that recognize social issues and put their money where their mouth is are companies that need to be supported. Sure, we all recognize and can identify with the biggest brands of the world but support companies that build social responsibility into their business model. These companies are truly trying to make a difference in this world. Our environment is in such a crucial state in today’s world and being able to support companies that make it a priority is another way you can help environmental initiatives.
Making a difference for our environment is being able to start small. Supporting companies that have green initiatives, practicing renewable energy sources, volunteering at local chapters, making changes to how you travel, buying locally grown products and partaking in trash clean ups are all small ways that every single individual can partake in to make a huge difference. Take some time to plan and think about small ways that you can make during the year to make a difference for our environment.
Yours in sustainability,
Jonathan and Jordan Witt