It can be hard to feel like your little efforts in your little corner of the world are making a difference. You might wonder if your efforts are shared or if you can help on some larger, global level.
There are many ways you can feel as if your efforts are paying off and to commune with others who share your ideas. One of the best weapons we have against global warming and the destruction of the environment is education. The more we know, the more we care. And you can definitely help in that regard.
Here we’ll give you some ideas.
One of the best things you can do is to educate yourself. That means join groups, do your reading, talk with others.
If you reference our resources section, you’ll find many ways to educate yourself about the environment. You can read books, join websites, and join with others in conversations.
Once you feel somewhat educated, you might be interested in taking another step. Perhaps you can participate in a message board as a resident expert on composting or glass recycling. How is this global? Thanks to the internet, much of our interactions these days are global in nature.
By communicating with people online, you have an opportunity like no other to interact with people from all over the globe – sharing ideas, helping each other, educating each other. Perhaps more than any other one effort, this is an amazing way to have an impact (combined with your daily Green efforts, of course).
You might spend a little bit of money for this one, but by joining advocacy groups you are buying into an ability to help Green efforts on a global level.
If you write a letter to a local politician or decision maker, he or she might pay attention to what you have to say or perhaps it won’t. But when those letters, emails and calls come from a well-funded and well-organized advocacy group dedicated to a particular cause, they often get a good deal more attention.
Through your campaign efforts you can encourage a better gas mileage standard for cars; advocate for preserving the world’s forests; encourage the use of alternative sources of energy such as wind and solar power; and encourage the need to conserve.
Joining one of these groups, then, can make a significant difference. The power of numbers should never be overlooked and let’s not forget to mention how it will make you feel – powerful and engaged.
Take a Vacation
Wait, didn’t we already suggest reducing the number of vacations you take? Not flying? We did, that’s true but this is a vacation that even the most Green of us can support.
How about ecotourism? You go to lovely and interesting places but with an emphasis on education and immersion in the local culture and developing an understanding of helping maintain the natural environment.
There is an emphasis in eco-tourism of supporting sustainable areas and traveling in such a way as no destruction supports your travel. Through eco-travel, you can gain an understanding of people who might be directly affected by, say, the destruction of rain forests, or a mismanagement of water resources.
Join the Pledge
Join with millions of people worldwide and pledge to plant trees to help the environment.
In an effort to increase the planet’s inventory of beneficial trees, the United Nations Environment Program began an effort in November 2006 called Plant for the Planet: Billion Tree Campaign.
With a goal to plant a billion trees, the program offers an opportunity for people throughout the world to participate in the same action, no matter where they live or their current conditions. BY planting a tree under this pledge, you join with millions of others who are doing the same.
If you want to participate, you can simply plant a tree in your own yard, or you can join with a local school and help the children plant trees. You can travel to a new location and help people plant trees. Feeling as if you are part of a larger effort to change the world, to affect climate change in a positive way and to Green up the world are the goals of the program.
Although within a year, more than 1.5 billion trees were planted worldwide, the effort is still ongoing and you can pledge to plant trees to help the planet. See our “resources” section for more information.
One of the greatest gifts you can give the environment right this very minute is to educate others and encourage others to join in your Green efforts.
You can do this in a myriad of ways, including:
Refer them to our site to take this course. The more people that take the course and commit to a greener lifestyle, the closer we all are to a cleaner and safer planet.
Set a good example. Begin a recycling effort at your work or school, or simplify your life to allow more Green activities. Perhaps you are the person who brings your own tote bags to the grocery store, or the one that refuses a newspaper subscription to reduce paper consumption. Maybe you are building a new home and installing solar panels. Whatever way you can, set a good example so others will be interested and want to follow in your Green efforts.
Help to educate people. Perhaps you could offer your services as a speaker in schools. Or you could write a column for the local newspaper about Green living. You could volunteer as a kind of docent at the local landfill, educating people about their waste and its effects on the world.