According to the Earth Day Network, more than one billion people in 192 countries participated in Earth Day 2012. That number includes several LJBers. Over the weekend, our employees and their families planted native trees, switched to battery-powered lawn mowers and replaced light bulbs with more energy-efficient ones.
At LJB, our core purpose is to improve the quality of life, so we asked employees how they make every day Earth Day. Here are a few tips they shared with us.
- Recycle more than just cans. Recycle plastic, cardboard, glass and paper too.
- Use laundry water or other sources of grey water to irrigate landscapes.
- Create compost with grass clippings, spoiled fruits and vegetables, etc.
- Put a gallon jug full of something in your toilet tank, or use low flow fixtures to reduce water usage.
- Shop for food locally – farmer’s market or grocery stores who identify local suppliers.
- Keep vehicles in tune and tires inflated or better yet, walk or bike to your destination.
- Install and use timed or motion-sensitive controls for a few of your house’s biggest forgot-to-turn-off energy users.
- Skip drive-thrus. Park, turn off your car and walk the extra 50 feet. And, don’t spend extra time looking for the best parking spot.
- Plant a vegetable garden – tomatoes, basil and zucchini are easy to grow in Ohio.
- Bring reusable tote bags for grocery shopping and pack lunches in reusable containers
- Green your air – bring plants into your home or workspace to absorb indoor air pollution and increase oxygen flow.
- Reduce over reuse – office paper is recyclable, but a lot gets wasted. Waste reduction is more sustainable than recycling because it minimizes the material that needs to be collected, transported and processed.
- Use more electronic files – the average U.S. office worker goes through 10,000 sheets of copy paper a year, according to Sierra Club estimates. So go for PDFs or park documents on a shared drive and then pull them up for everyone to view collectively in a meeting.
- Skip the screen saver. Screen savers use excess energy when you are away from your desk. Change your screen settings to “hibernate” or “sleep” when you’re away for more than 10 minutes.
While Earth Day is a great opportunity to bring awareness to the need to protect our natural resources, we need to challenge each other to go beyond a special day and make simple, sustainable changes in our everyday lives.