I believe most of us have already seen the heartbreaking video clip of a sea turtle with a plastic straw being extracted from its nostril. It’s painful to watch not only because of the pain that can be seen and heard from the creature but also because of the knowledge that we constantly contribute to this, whether we like it or not.
Read Also: How Polluted is the Estero Near You
When asked what they remember every June, most Filipinos would likely answer “Independence Day” – but little do they know, in line with the World Environment Day every June 5, we’re celebrating the Philippine Environment month as well!
And now as June comes to an end, our efforts shouldn’t end too but rather, we should still strive to continue doing our part to sustain our planet. Sure, I completely understand how daunting it is to think of changing the world or even cleaning up the environment because wow the world is HUGE! But we should also take time to consider that change comes slowly. It is not drastic nor instant, but a continuous, ongoing battle that we must strive to win every single day.
How? Let’s get creative!
– According to earthday.org, 500,000 straws are being used around the world every day – a bunch of straws that end up in landfills or worse, the sea! So instead of these single-use straws, why not invest in reusable ones?
From metal and paper to bamboo – there are so many types of eco-friendly straws to choose from! Better yet, if you don’t really need them, just go straw-less. The same goes for other single-use materials like Styrofoam cups and plastic utensils.
– Did you know you can actually build homes in your own ways? Wait before you stop reading while thinking, “What? How can I possibly help create a freaking house? I don’t even have my own!” Just hear me out.
Eco-bricking is one of the first steps you can take towards zero-waste living! Simply stuff all your plastic wastes in a plastic bottle and voilà! You now have an Eco-brick* that can serve as a foundation of a structure. Just do a quick search for drop-off outlets near you and dispose of your plastic in an eco-friendly (and helpful) way!
*for more information about the fantastic Eco-brick, visit www.ecobricks.org!
– Eco bags have been quite in the movement for a while now but sadly, not everyone’s joining in. Let change start with you! When going shopping, opt to bring your own reusable bags. It doesn’t only help reduce plastic waste but secures your goodies as well.
Say goodbye to stuff falling all over the floor because of torn plastic bags! Also, if you’re buying a small thing that can easily be hand-carried or placed inside your tote, just simply skip the packaging!
Practice the Recycle Cycle!
– I’m pretty sure the line “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” has been constantly drilled in our heads since childhood but it’s about time to actually walk the talk! Reduce energy and water consumption, invest in reusable materials, and get those creative juices flowing by recycling! Hey, you don’t only get to cut down on your wastes but also get to cut down your budget! Win-win, right?
Don’t Get Wasted, Get Waste-Ed!
– This is the most important part. Waste Education may seem silly but you’ll be surprised to know the shockingly large amount of people who actually don’t know the simple difference between Biodegradable and Non-Biodegradable. You don’t even need to have a wide reach or thousands of followers to spread the word. Just starting the conversation with your friends and family can go a long way.
Some clichés are clichés for a reason – because they are true. And when I say that every little step we take towards sustainability is a step closer for our air to be more breathable, our oceans be more livable, and our lands are used more efficiently to help our communities, it’s actually a fact.
Now, doesn’t that make you feel like kind of a superhero? Because it sure does for me. So let’s get to work!