The first step to helping the environment is becoming more environmentally aware, not just on a global scale but also on a local scale.
The articles here focus on environments around the globe, but you are encouraged to venture outside, reconnect with nature and become accustomed to the wildlife and environments near you.
At home, use your garden space to create a wildlife haven and welcome pollinators by planting wildflowers. Make sustenance available with log piles and ponds, and provide access in fences for wildlife to pass through. You can sign up to iDot at The WIldlife Aid Foundation to add to a global counter of positive actions to help inspire others too.
Once you've become accustomed to the wildlife and environments around you, advocate for change at your local schools to integrate more outdoor learning and conservation efforts.
Begin to learn about the environments globally, and see how your actions at home can affect the environments of distant lands. The waste that we deposit reaches all corners of the Earth, such as PBDE found in Polar Bears in the Arctic.
Lastly, share your knowledge. Be an advocate for inspiring change through the lessons learned. Continue to learn and immerse yourself in activities, articles, videos, books and art that help to enhance your understanding.
We are now a civilization of consumers, wanting more, faster and cheaper, but this comes at a cost to the planet. It is now proven that companies deliberately alter the lifespan of products to increase sales, and very rarely, is the environment considered in production.
It is estimated that the World generates 3.5million tons of plastic, every day, according to National Geographic. This is the weight of plastic. When we consider the waste of other materials, such as textiles from clothing, wood from furniture, food waste and glass, the numbers are unbelievable. Further to this, the rate of decomposition on these items is staggering. As we continue to consume, our waste piles on the Earth, unable to consume or degrade it. A glass bottle can take 1000 years to biodegrade.
So what do we do instead? The first, is to reduce, reuse, recycle. Where possible, opt for second hand items and give furniture a new lease of life with some DIY.
Purchase responsibly, and well. It is better to buy well and once, than to continue to purchase items that need to be replaced.
Where possible, make the choice for an eco friendly option, such as bamboo toothbrushes and reusable bags. Sanitary items and nappies can be reused when opting for cloth versions, and old toys can be donated.
Check out our article Decomposition rates for more.
Diet, and more importantly, changing diet is one of the hardest behavioural changes to encourage. Pre-disposed ideas, clever marketing, and cultural beliefs mean that the World continues to eat items that are having a substantially negative effect on the Earth.
One of the largest impact changes a person can make is switching to a vegetarian or vegan diet. With deforestation for cattle raising being a huge influence on the conservation of species, with the methane produced, along with soil eutrophication, water use and the health disadvantages, being vegetarian or vegan will be at a huge benefit to the planet.
Additionally, we must all learn to buy more locally, utilising independent, reduced waste stores to purchase items not imported from abroad. Checking ingredients to ensure it does not contain ingredients such as palm oil is another important, and simple change that can be made.
We must all ensure that we are selecting items that do not produce too much waste, sourcing vegetables free of packaging and chemicals, as well as producing our own food and composting at home where possible.
Whilst it can be initially difficult to implement these changes personally, the options are now increasing, with plant-based alternatives readily available at most restaurants, supermarkets reducing plastic packaging and independent shops offering refill stations.
Being active can take many forms, for some, it is in education, or creating YouTube videos. For others, it may be protesting or creating petitions for political change.
As long as you are actively trying to make a difference you will have an impact.
Not sure where to start though? Here are a few ideas
If you are a student in the environmental sciences, you can sign up to be a voting member within our The Open WIlding Project that looks to rewild land in the UK for wildlife, the environment and field experience.
- Donate to The Open Wilding Project
- Volunteer on conservation expeditions
- Take part in online assistance identifying animals on trail cams with Zooniverse
- Encourage your local council to adopt sustainable practices
- Take a course in environmental science, animal behaviour or biology
- Train to become an ecologist.
- Attend a protest advocating for animal rights or environmental protection
- Donate to a charity
- Support The Climate Corner by subscribing and sharing content
- Join forums to encourage discussion about the environment
- Complete litter drives with schools and local people
- Start an ethical business
- Create a children's book about environmental protection
- Write an article and submit it to The Climate Corner for publishing
- Donate to the IUCN which is the official list of endangered species