Posted by Carten Cordell / Wednesday, April 20th, 2011
This Friday (April 22, which also happens to be Good Friday) is Earth Day. Earth Day Network, works with over 22,000 partners in 192 countries to “broaden, diversify and mobilize the environmental movement.” Over 1 billion people participate in Earth Day activities each year, which makes it one of the largest movements in the world.
Celebrate this day and support the movement! Here are four things you can do to help the environment.
1. Eat organic or local; shop at a Farmers Market (with your reusable bag, of course)
By doing this you are:
Consuming less chemicals and pesticides,
Keeping local farms viable
Helping to save energy and money in transport (organic food generally travels less miles from farm to market)
Helping your community toward sustainable food security
Tasting good quality food, who doesn’t want that?
2. Don’t eat meat, or eat less meat
By doing this you are:
Being more healthy by reducing the risk of cancer (red and processed meat consumption are associated with colon cancer), heart disease, diabetes, obesity
Improving your diet with other foods like lentils, legumes, vegetables, fruits, etc.
Reducing your carbon footprint (meat industry generates 1/5 of man-made greenhouse gas emissions- that’s more than transportation!)
Minimizing overall water usage ( ~1800-2500 gallons of water per 1lb beef vs ~220 gallons of water per 1lb soy tofu)
(Catholics)Not supposed to eat meat on Good Friday anyways!
3. Learn a healthy new (but easy) recipe that can be your specialty
This can be your new “thing.” There are so many healthy and easy recipes with few ingredients.You’ll be saving money and it is a step to eating healthier. Almost everything is processed these days, it is hard to pick out something on the menu (besides salad) that is NOT processed.
Check out these recipes:
Asparagus Morel Risotto -a little more complicated by really tasty!
4. Start an organic garden (It’s not too late)
Ok, planting a garden may be a very, very big step (and hard work) for some but it is worth it. I think that the first baby step that I will take towards my own garden is buying a small basil or mint plant that has already sprouted and is ready to eat. I’ve seen basil and mint plants at Wegmans for around $3 that are ready to go. It is definitely a start.
If you don’t know where to start, there are many resources and tips to start your own little garden online.
If you don’t have any room in your backyard, or need some inspiration: there are so many New Yorkers (we all know that they are REALLY short on space- check out this fire escape garden) who grow their plants in containers.
Strive to continue this type of “earth-friendly” and healthy lifestyle. I promise that when you are harvesting your own produce it will be wonderful and worth it.