We still continue to treat our home without a care. We seem to forget that without it, we do not exist. We live in a time where technological advancement and artificial intelligence headline the news. We’ve become so far removed from our roots, so obsessed with ourselves, that the mass extinction, oil spillages and rising sea levels are just things that we can brush aside and hide under the carpet.
We can not stand for this. Too many times do people say, “my actions won’t change anything.” This puts into question how disconnected of a society we have become; to not understand that we can work together because that is the only way we can achieve change. Now, although there is a lot we can do to reduce our ecological footprint and act against climate change and pollution, there are far too many bystanders waiting the side lines for tragedy to strike. What are you waiting for, join in!
It may be scary, but nobody is asking you to change your whole lifestyle tomorrow, no one expects you to be perfect, but the least you can do is try. The moment you start trying is the moment you are honest with yourself and participate in the movement most important to humanity today. If you are at a loss of inspiration, below you can find certain small steps you can take starting today.
Zero Waste: Humans can live without producing waste, wait, what?! It’s been done, there are plenty of blogs about people who have collected two years worth of waste in one jar. This is a huge step forward compared to the 777 kg of garbage Canadians produce per year, making them the world leaders in this department. Woohoo! Wait, that might not be such a great thing… A drastic reduction in waste not only diminishes the content being shipped to landfills but consequently cuts the problem at the root, before we even need to talk about the three Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle).
This might seem impossible to you, but here in Montreal the resources are endless. This transformation does not need to happen overnight, but there are small actions that can be taken every day to reach the ultimate goal. Buying in bulk, thrift shopping and bringing reusable bags are all ideas that can help reduce consumption. The best part is, these little modifications do not majorly affect anyone’s life, although they do go a long way in protecting our environment.
Meat Consumption Reduction: There is no perfect diet that can satisfy everyone’s requirements because all our bodies are unique and must be nourished in different ways. However, reducing your meat consumption has amazing environmental and health benefits, and is something to consider seriously. It has been proven, Canada’s Food Guides were recently updated to encourage the reduction of animal products, and the UN released a report a few years ago on the environmental impact of the meat industry.
Citing Henning Steinfeld, UN Food and Agricultural Organization official, “Livestock are one of the most significant contributors to today’s most serious environmental problems”. The statistics are mind blowing, the research astounding and the arguments convincing, so what is stopping you from joining? This might be hard to hear, but it is more honourable for values to come before your liking of bacon.
Ecological Footprint Calculation: How many Earths would we need if everyone lived like you? Take the test and find out: www.footprintnetwork.org. This is by far one of the best tools you can use to realize the most prominent action you should take to reduce your footprint, and it’s free!
At the end of the day, we’re all different. Your first steps to reduce your ecological impact might be someone’s last, but every step counts!
Although it may not be Earth day quite yet, you should make a promise to our Earth that you will open your eyes, and that you will change, even in the slightest amount and do your best to diminish the human impact you have on this Earth.
Now let’s change society, let’s stand up together!
Written by: Sophie McCafferty
Photo: By Jeangagnon – Own work (Zoomed), CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=35652506