Don’t call yourself an environmentalist if you do these things 4 things.


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There is no doubt that we need to take more care of the environment. Whether you believe in Climate change or not, there is too much scientific and physical evidence to deny that there is a shift in the environment which is directly related to human-beings effect on it.

As a whole, we have had a negative effect on the environment and it’s time that we make a change.

If you truly want to leave the environment better than you found it, there are many things that you can do. Particularly these three things:

1. Drink through plastic straws.

Straws are made of plastic and, according to BBC, 8.5 billion straws are used per year. That is a lot of straws! What makes straws so harmful is that they are difficult to biodegrade, naturally able to be decomposed by bacteria. The use and overuse of straws has an effect on landfilled oceans as well as the wildlife living in these oceans. The Plastic Pollution Coalition released an article last year stating that they had found penguins, turtles and other small wildlife choked or trapped by straws.

Solution: Use metal reusable straws or don’t use straws at all.

2. Drive everywhere

I get asked often why I don’t have a car living in Los Angeles. And, for me, it’s mostly for the environment. I am a single woman and don’t feel the necessity of having a car. Particularly because I know the negative effects of using petrol/ gas on the environment. It starts with the process of finding and refining petrol that has a direct impact on the environment as it creates air pollution. The use of petrol in our cars emits toxic fumes into the air and creates air pollution.

Solution: Only use your car if there are or will be at least 3 people in the car to reduce emission toxic fumes. Furthermore, write to your senator or parliament to find out another feasible solution for cars to use instead of petrol/gas like solar-powered cars.

3. Don’t recycle. 

Recycling isn’t someone else’s job; it is yours. We can’t expect others to recycle for us when we have seen the effects of landfills on the oceans and the wildlife. Lack of recycling waste accumulated the waste in natural areas. The more that we are able to recycle wastes like plastic, the more that we can efficiently reuse it and prevent it from affecting our natural habitats and environment.

Solution: Recycle and compost as much as you can.

4. Take showers longer than 5 minutes.

It is clear that there is a lack of useable water. So, when I see people taking 10-30 minute showers, it disappoints me. The Centre for Disease Control says that there are 780 million people without proper water resources like taps in the world. The argument that I often hear when I explain this is that it is up to the cities that this is happening in to make a difference. However, we saw in cities like Los Angeles and Cape Town that, lack of water is a worldwide problem.

Solution: Limit your showers to 2-5 minutes a day and avoid leaving the tap running when you are not using it.