Ways to reduce your carbon footprint
By: Anku Sharma
Earth has inspired some of the greatest artists, poets and writers, we all know of astronauts crying out loud seeing the beautiful earth spinning like a blue marble.
However, over the years our planet has had to withstand the greed of man. We have plundered and pillaged our natural resources leading to catastrophic circumstances.
With tsunamis, bleaching of reefs, breaking of Antarctic ice, rising sea levels, rising CO2 levels across the world and 2019 being the warmest year in the history ever recorded.
We are at this very moment at the brink of a disaster waiting to happen. No doubt the lockdown across the globe has put a pause to any impending apocalyptic scenario yet unless we don’t take concrete steps, it”ll be nearly impossible to set the clock back in time to a green Earth as we know from beautiful art, cinema, poetry and pictures.
Climate change is real, but not unsolvable. There are lots of actionable steps you can take to save the planet from an ever-changing climate.
Here are five ways to reduce your carbon footprint:
1.The first thing we must do if we care about our environment is to turn to a plant-based diet. If not for the compassion of our fellow sentient beings then do it to save water.
Animal or livestock farms are a major reason for greenhouse gases as well as it takes a lot more water to produce a gram of meat as compared to kilos of vegetables.
2. Eliminate (not reduce), just permanently eliminate the use of single-use plastic. Start with saying no to bisleri bottles and vegetable plastic bags, these are two of the worst offenders and are major causes of plastic pollution.
Other plastic products we use but do not realize are shampoo bottles, makeup packaged in plastic containers, daals/pulses packaged in plastic, sanitary napkins, nappies, e-waste (mobiles, chargers, computers, etc).
So, what we do is create an inventory of everyday plastic we use and switch it with a sustainable option e.g instead of a plastic bottle switch to terracotta or a steel one for drinking water. You can even go for clothes that are made organically. Without harsh chemical dyes.
3. We can start by growing our own food. Grow a kitchen garden, if you live in an appointment then grow plants in pots (even pans or broken kettles would do, bisleri bottles too come in handy in growing little plants. Do remember to use neem oil instead of fertilizers, urea or pesticides.
You can start by growing sprouts from lentils by sprinkling a bit of water and leaving it in a warm place till it sprouts, similarly u can grow microgreens in a little shallow tub of water too.
These are an easy way to Kickstart your kitchen garden. Apart from that plant trees. Take part in tree plantations or help out with green missions in your schools, colleges or cities.
4. Another very important lifestyle change one can make is saying no to chemical-laden everyday products. Learn to create your own shampoo, soaps, candles. Learn to bake your own cakes, bread, snacks. Chips packets create a lot of pollution around tourist spots if you have noticed.
All in all, firstly you must start by making sure that all steps to be taken towards reducing your carbon footprint should result in your overall health and happiness. Secondly, take each step one at a time till it becomes a habit, then go on to the next. This way one can create a lifestyle of zero waste and reduce our carbon footprint.
5. Another thing to note here is trying to avoid traveling by car to nearby places, cycle instead or if your city has safe and good public transport then use that.
6. Another thing one can do is to create a zero-waste journal. An everyday diary where you write your steps towards reducing your carbon footprints.
So, as earth day approaches let us all pledge towards a greener, healthier and beautiful mother earth.
(On 50 years of Earth Day – join us in making India’s largest climate action manifesto. #FiftyForFifty. Connect with us and tell what step are you taking for climate action?)