SSV hopes that our readership had a great Earth Day last month. Perhaps you acknowledged the day by using more climate friendly transportation, such as riding a bike, carpooling or using public transit. Or maybe you opted for a veggie burger instead of a beef burger at lunch. You may have made a donation to your favorite wildlife conservation organization, or attended one of the earth day events in your area to learn more about the environmental issues affecting your community, and the planet we share.

There are a myriad of ways to meaningfully recognize Earth Day. But consider for a moment that this great annual event occupies one day of a full year. Imagine the impact one could make as an individual and as a collective of Earth Day observers if we lived every day as if it were Earth Day.   Fortunately, an Earth Day Every Day lifestyle is both possible and practical. Consider the following steps:

Buy locally grown, pesticide-free food.

Buying produce from a local farmer’s market as opposed to the grocery store is positive from a climate perspective. The transportation of food across the country, and internationally is responsible for a large proportion of the food’s life cycle carbon emissions. Buying locally grown food however, cuts out the transportation-related emissions. Shopping at farmer’s markets is also a great way to ensure the food you purchase is pesticide free, which in addition to being good for your health, is also positive for the environment.

Farmer’s Market in Palo Alto, CA













Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

By adopting a reduce, reuse, recycle mindset in relation to material goods, one can both help the environment, and also save time and money.   “Reduce” means acquiring fewer material goods. One can for example reduce the amount of junk mail that ends up in one’s mailbox everyday, by calling the associated companies and requesting that you be removed from their mailing list. “Reuse” by opting away from disposable or single-use items, in favor of durable goods and donating worn but still functional items to second-hand vendors. Recycle by sorting your household throwaway items, and utilizing your local recycling services.

Conserve Water

California’s water resources are under great stress. About a quarter of human water use in California is associated with the urban environment, which includes your home. One can make a difference however as an individual or family by reducing waste. Consider not leaving the water running while brushing your teeth or washing dishes. Try a quick shower instead of a bath. Consider a garden of drought tolerant plants as opposed to a water hungry lawn. Find out if your home is compatible with a rainwater harvesting system.

These are only a few of the many ways to make every day an Earth Day. To maximize the impact of your Earth Day inspired actions, pass along what you are doing and why to your family and friends.