Five Ways Anyone Can Combat Climate Change

According to the Pew Research Center, 63 percent of Americans are concerned that climate change is affecting their communities and 65 percent think that the government is doing too little to reduce the effects. 

A supermajority of Americans want major policy changes to lessen greenhouse gasses and combat climate change. For instance, according to research, 80% of Americans want “tougher restrictions on power plant carbon emissions.” 

You and your family and the community can take an active role, both in your habits, conversations and also by spurring policy change. Experts agree focusing on solutions is the best way to go.

 

 

 

Growing some of one’s own produce, such as tomatoes, and drying clothes outside are ways to help the environment and use less energy. Photo credit: Donna Marie Iadipaolo.

1.) Better Food Consumption

Wasting less food and using less packaging saves energy, which in turn is better for the environment. Also, consider growing some of your own food in a garden this summer. Some people call their summer gardens “Climate Victory” gardens. Gardening is not only good for the environment, but the food is often healthier and even tastier. Rain gardens and easement gardens can also be highly ecological. Eating a more plant-based diet, particularly less red meat, can help as well since more resources are needed to produce meat. Plant-based diets are not only better for the planet, but for one’s health. ​​

2.) Cut Energy Use

Purchase appliances that are energy-efficient. Use LED light bulbs that use 80 percent less energy than conventional incandescents, and are more cost-effective. Pull the plug on devices when not in use, particularly fully-charged devices. Weatherize your home to make heating and air-conditioning more efficient, along with sealing drafts and installing good windows. Consider drying clothes on the clothesline rather than in the drier. Families may receive tax credits for some energy-efficient home improvements.

Families may also choose to shop at local businesses that promote zero waste.

The general rule of “reduce, reuse, and recycle” is always wonderful to keep in mind as well. 

: Easement gardens by the road can also improve the ecology and beauty of an area, as can “Climate Victory Gardens” and rain gardens. Photo credit: Donna Marie Iadipaolo

3.) Smart Transportation

Choose to walk or bike, if you can. Using mass transit, such as buses, or even carpooling helps to reduce using gas and cut down emissions. Working at home some days of the week, where many people are more relaxed and productive, will reduce the commute and use of the car.. When you do use your car, make sure it is properly maintained. Making sure your tires are properly inflated, a simple tune-up and new air filter can boost miles per gallon. Consider purchasing a hybrid or electric vehicle, and try not to fly very often

4.) Use Less Water

Saving water also reduces carbon pollution because of the energy needed to pump, heat, and treat water. Taking shorter and fewer showers helps. Turn off the water while brushing your teeth. A dishwasher actually uses less water than washing by hand

Consider getting a rain barrel to collect rainwater. It is estimated that a rain barrel will save homeowners about 1,300 gallons of water during peak summer months. Rain gardens also conserve water by reducing the need for irrigation while beautifying your surroundings.

5.) Push for Climate Policy

In order for real change to happen, corporations and governments need to commit to reducing emissions on a global scale. Doing the above steps also help, along with conversations with friends, family, and representatives on how climate change can be stopped. Encourage Congress to enact new laws to limit carbon emissions and change to using more renewables.