Earth Day: Why I celebrate
Earth day is on Monday, April 22. I don't know what image comes to your mind when you think of Earth day, but if it's a negative one, I'd like to challenge you with some interesting facts.
Plastics: culprits of toxicity for humans, marine life, and an overwhelming garbage epidemic.
- There was a lot of awareness for the dangers of BPA that came out a few years ago. But even so called safe plastic is made from potentially harmful, synthetic chemicals that leach out in our food, body care products, and other products we use daily. With our overwhelming use of plastic in our daily lives, it's no surprise that researchers have recently discovered that in a baby's umbilical cord, there is an average of 200 industrial chemicals and pollutants. (1) The long lasting effects that our chemical entrenched world is still yet to be revealed.
- Marine Life has been dying and that is because our oceans are dying. The reefs are dying, the fish are dying and the water is becoming more and more polluted and filled with plastic. It's not just the pollution in the water, it's our plastic filling up the seas. An estimated 14 billion tons of trash, mostly plastic, is dumped into our oceans every year. If you went to school, you should know that our livelihood is deeply tied with the health of our eco-system. If we continue in this downward spiral, we will be essentially sealing our own fate. (2)
Textile Waste: the shocking effects of greed
Consumers throw away shoes an clothing an average of 70 pounds per person, annually. The second largest pollutant in the manufacturing world (second to oil), the clothing industry contributes to 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Consumers in the United Kingdom have an estimated $46.7 billion worth of unworn clothes in their closets. (3) (4)
Toxins, Pesticides, & Synthetics: Can't get away from poison
Walk outside, and you'll find a yard free of dandelions (thank you pesticides). Eat an apple or a slice of bread ( thank you roundup), get a smelly candle from the store (thank you, synthetic fragrance)...literally everywhere there is toxins and chemicals, some researched and proven to be extremely carcinogenic and harmful, some not researched but used freely despite severe health risks. It's hard to get away from toxins and we're on a racetrack to fill the earth with it. Let me ask you this, has health improved or rapidly declined in the last 20-50 years? It's not a mystery. We just refuse to admit the truth.
Ignoring Facts: Duping ourselves with comfortable lies
The research is out there. We'd prefer to watch happy animal videos and feel good stories. Truth is being shouted from many sources. We'd rather watch Netflix while drinking koolaid. Possibly literally.
I'm not okay with this. I've been wanting to change how I live. To live a more toxic free and sustainable life. That's why I do what I do. That's why I am constantly looking for better solutions for containers and packaging for my products. It's why I only use organically sourced products. It's why I don't settle for "good enough."
I'm not there yet. But I'm awake and I'm trying. So I've put together some steps to start changing patterns so that we all can make a difference.
Steps to daily be more toxic free and earth conscious:
1) Research. Educate yourself. Start with the Enviromental Working Group (https://www.ewg.org/) and go from there. Ask the tough questions. Don't be afraid to be wrong. If you're afraid of something, ask yourself why? Being teachable is a good thing.
2) Reduce Plastic in your every day life and recycle what you do use. Use reusable grocery bags. Find suitable replacements for everyday items. Avoid single use plastics. Water bottles are a huge waste, besides the fact that they are made with BPA plastic which leaches out and causes hormone disrupting chemicals to be in the water you drink. Use metal or glass refillable water bottles!
3) Buy organic or nonGMO. Gmo pesticides kill both good and bad bugs, a huge reason why we have a pollinator problem in the US. It also takes a huge toxic load off of your body.
4) Buy only used or sustainable clothing. I love Pact Organic, but there are many others now!
5) Switch to healthier body care products, dish soap, and more! If you need help or suggestions, let me know! :)
6) Garden & compost!
These are just a few beginner ideas! The possibilities are endless. I have a Pinterest board devoted to ideas for every day sustainability...feel free to follow along with my journey! (https://www.pinterest.com/HealthyFarmGirl/sustainability/)
What are some of your ideas?