In the spirit of our recent Earth Day, I’ve collected some of my favorite ways to make a positive impact on the environment. You might think you’re too young to make a difference, or that one person doesn’t really matter, but you are flat out wrong. The world is made up of single people. If all those single people just do one tiny thing, it adds up very quickly indeed. Here are ten ways to save the world, one little person at a time.
1. Throw out aerosols. Got aerosol hairspray or tanner? The aerosol in that can is harming the ozone. So chunk it (or better, recycle it) and get one with a pump spray instead.
2. Change a light bulb. Grab one of those new funny looking light bulbs and save tons on energy. That means less money in bills for your parents and less fossil fuels used to create the energy in the first place.
3. Walk to school.
Instead of taking the bus, take a walk or bike to school in the morning. By not taking part in a diesel-driven ride, you’ll be showing your support to the environment. Plus the exercise won’t hurt you either.
4. Carpool. Instead of you and your best friend arriving at cheer practice separately, ask your mom to swing over and grab your friend. That way only one car is out there polluting instead of two.
5. Pick up trash.
Instead of watching trash blow by you in the parking lot, take a minute to pick it up. Grab a few more pieces as you walk and throw them away. Not only will you be picking up pollution, you’ll also be encouraging those around you to do the same.
6. Put a water bottle in your toilet. You don’t really need that much water to flush your toilet. So if you fill a small water bottle with gravel or rocks and place it inside the tank with the help of a parent, your toilet won’t fill with as much water and you’ll be able to save a bit every time you flush.
7. Check for leaks. Dripping faucets or running toilets waste obscene amounts of water. Check your house for anything that’s leaking and alert your parents to the problem. If they seem uninterested, start nagging them to fix it. After all, they nag you to finish your vegetables. It’s only fair that you can nag them to finish a household project that can help save the earth.
8. Take a bath. A bath uses less water than most showers. Fill the tub about three inches high and then take care of cleaning while soaking a bit. Letting the shower run while you shave your legs and let your conditioner sit is water running down the drain – literally.
9. Plant something.
Next time you see plants or seeds on sale, buy one and plant it. Ask for a tree for your birthday, and then help your parents plant it in the back yard. Not only will it always be your tree, it will also be there for future generations to enjoy.
10. Recycle. Almost everything we use today can be recycled. See if your city offers recycling pick-up and then arrange a bin. If not, set aside some bins for recycling and take those bins and collected items to a recycling center with your parent’s help every week or month.