Everything We do Every Day Makes a Difference.
The words “Earth Day” make me think of nature and beautiful landscapes pictures of beaches, waterfalls, forests and mountains. All the amazing plants, animals and wonders of the world are breathtaking miracles. Earth Day started in 1970 in the U.S., when workers protested the Industrial Revolution. When searching for statistics for this article, I discovered the UN renamed it to be “Mother Earth Day” in 2009. It is recognized across the globe on April 22nd by people doing something to improve the planet. Men, women and children across diverse culturess pick up trash, clean coral reefs, plant trees, ride bikes or participate in similar activities to celebrate the day. Earth Day is a great way to recognize our ability to make a difference in our planet’s wellbeing everyday. The items we use, the goods consume, and how we dispose of them every single day make the biggest difference. Here are a few recycling and environmental statistics from www.all-recycling-facts.com and ways you can help improve our planet.
- “A plant takes a minimum of 15 to 20 years to grow into a tree, but takes less than ten minutes to be chopped down, and on an average one tree can yield about 700 paper grocery bags, which will be consumed in less than an hour by a supermarket!”
- “Energy used to recycle paper is close to 70% less than when paper is prepared using virgin wood and other raw material.”
- “Recycling 14 trees worth of paper reduces air pollutants by 165,142 tons.”
You can help improve these statistics by recycling the papers you no longer need, eliminating paper publications by downloading electronic versions, setting up electronic statements and bills, and printing only necessary documents. You can also work on going paperless. (For ways to work on being more paperless, read our article on How to go Paperless.
- “Almost every hour, nearly 250,000 plastic bottles are dumped. It is not surprising that plastic bottles constitute close to 50% of recyclable waste in the dumps.”
- “The average time taken by plastic bottles to decompose in a landfill is close to 700 years.”
- “Plastic not only adds to landfill space and takes forever to decompose. Used plastic dumped into the sea kills and destroys sea life at an estimated 1,000,000 sea creatures per year!”
You can help improve these statistics by using refillable water bottles and containers, reusable grocery bags, and lunch containers.
- “Overall, Americans recovered 34% of waste generated in 2009. That means we threw away 161 million tons of material, which amounts to about three pounds of garbage per person per day.” – www.kab.org
- “In 2009, Americans recycled 82 million tons of materials. The resulting CO2 emission reduction is equivalent to taking 33 million passenger vehicles off the road.” – www.kab.org
- “The recyclable materials in the U.S. waste stream would generate over $7 billion if they were recycled. That’s equivalent to Donald Trump’s net worth.” – www.kab.org
- “Nearly 60 to 70% of waste found in trashcans can be recycled and reused and close to 50% of the same waste can be composted.”
You can improve these statistics by recycling, composting and decreasing your trash output. Recycling electronics, glass, paper and plastic has huge impacts on our energy and natural resources.
It is our job to preserve the soil, water, and natural resources we have been given. Each one of us can make a difference everyday by choosing to recycle our consumables. We can also make a difference in the lives of others by donating our unwanted clothes and household goods to those less fortunate. Our Resources page has more ideas of places where you can donate unwanted items.