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While not everyone may be an environmental activist, most people still inhabiting this planet has some semblance of interest in protecting the earth.
The problem, though, is that they’re unsure what they can do to help. The good thing is, it’s not that hard as it can even start at home and the places and activities we frequent.
In this article, we talk about the simple things everyone can do to help preserve the earth and life on this planet.
11 Ways Filipinos can Help Save our Environment
1. Leverage natural light
You’d be surprised how much electricity you can save by utilizing natural light into your homes whenever you can. Not only that, exposing yourself to sunlight is a great source of Vitamin D (a key element to boosting our immune systems).
And while not everyone can redesign their homes to allow more natural light in, you can rearrange your living space so that either the spaces that you work in (if you’re fortunate enough to do so), or spend the most time in, features natural lighting.
2. Re-use water
Whenever you can, repurpose the water you use. For example, the soapy water you used for the laundry can be stored and used for flushing the toilet. The strained water you used for washing the dishes can be used to water your plants.
There are plenty of ways you can help save water. All it takes is being mindful about it.
3. Lessen single-use plastics
Let’s be honest, it’s tough (if not nearly impossible) to truly and fully avoid single-use plastic in the Philippines. But we can always try to lessen it whenever we can.
Whether it’s bringing your tumbler (for water or when ordering coffee) or bringing your own bag when shopping, there are plenty of ways you can lessen single-plastic use.
4. Shop local
Shopping local not only supports the local economy, but it’s also great for lessening the carbon footprint brought about by logistics.
Additionally, with a number of Filipinos turning to e-commerce to dampen the economic hit brought about by the pandemic, it’s always good to support your own.
5. Turn off your e-commerce notifications
Speaking of commerce, a bit part of embracing an environmental mindset is being mindful. As such, if you’re really serious about making an impact both on the environment and your well-being, you can start being more mindful of what you purchase.
One hack to doing that is turning off your e-commerce notifications.
Constantly hearing “Shopee!” from your phone can play tricks with your head, so turn off notifications and see how good it is at helping you consume less.
Additionally, whenever you can, opt for eco-friendly purchases, or at least items from brands that are known to support environmental initiatives.
You should also choose reusable items over single-use ones. Whether it’s utensils, cups, or shopping bags, there are plenty of options that not only help to preserve the planet but look cool too.
Composting is the practice of letting your food and yard waste rot naturally in the soil instead of sending it to the landfill.
Adopting this practice offers a two-fold reward: it keeps a massive amount of trash out of the waste stream while also producing free, rich soil that you can use in your garden.
7. Grow your own
While you’re at it, why not grow your own produce? Yes, it’s become trendy to be a plantita, but why stop at ornamental plants? There’s great satisfaction to be had by growing your own root crops. It also brings you one step closer to self-sustainability.
With vegetable prices fluctuating all the time, not only are you helping the environment, you’re helping your own budget as well.
Speaking of cool stuff, you can get your creative juices into play by upcycling – that is, turning what would otherwise be trash into something new. This could be in the form of art, home decor, or fashion accessories.
Who knows, if you get good enough, this might even be the start of a small business venture.
9. One screen at a time
There are plenty of times during the workday when we need to have both our mobile phones and computers turned on. But there should never be a time when the TV is on while you’re mindlessly scrolling on your phone.
Of course, this also translates to other practices that help save electricity – setting appliances on a timer, switching off lights, unplugging, etc. Every little bit helps, especially if it comes from everyone.
10. Bike/walk whenever you can
The pandemic has made popular what we Filipinos should have been doing all along – biking. With the lack of public transpo, more and more people have turned to two wheels as a viable/trendy commuting option.
Apart from the obvious benefit of lessening your carbon footprint, biking/walking also allows you to explore and experience different places (even your own neighborhood) in a way that you wouldn’t if you were inside a vehicle.
And if biking/walking isn’t possible, make sure you plan your trips so that you only bring out your vehicle (and add to the already bad traffic situation) as less frequently as you can.
So say you need to go on a grocery run, maybe you can schedule it the same day as your trip to the hairdresser or the dentist.
11. Be more mindful
To a large extent, being a steward for the environment is about being more mindful – about everything. And it starts within you.
When you’re more mindful of your thoughts, your senses, and even your own breathing, you’re able to notice the little things that can make this life experience a truly beautiful one.
And when you start being a more mindful person, you slowly become more compassionate – to yourself, others, and the world you live in.
There’s a kindness in mindful living that translates to everything we do, a sort of kindness that translates to everything we do and every choice we make.
If you’re going to take anything away from reading this, we hope it’s that you always have the choice to do your part.
The environmental challenges we face might ultimately be in the hands of the oil conglomerates, but if we keep doing our part, it can still make a difference, especially when done collectively.
Changing the world might be a gargantuan task, but doing the right things and making the right choices for yourself and others is something you can do every day.