By Olivia Neuray, EEB4 S7 FRC
Climate change is the biggest threat for the future of our planet and to our own future. There are a lot of things that we can all do in our daily lives to help fight climate change. Many of them are practically effortless, and can even help save money. Here are five ‘no brainer’ tips, that even the laziest among you can put in action:
Tip number 1: Walk, bicycle or use public transport
Come on guys, we are living in Brussels, which is a big city with lots of different ways for getting around. If you’re going only a short distance, why don’t you just walk or take your bike? This has no negative impacts on the planet, but very positive benefits for your health!
Otherwise, there are many other options that produce less CO2 emissions than the car. For example, Brussels has metro, trams, buses, trains, and more recently, electric scooters. On top of this, they are also much less expensive in the long run than taking the car.
Tip number 2: B.Y.O.B. (Bring your own bottle)
Plastic production is also contributing to climate change. A lot of plastic items such as, drinking bottles are used only once and then thrown away. A lot of them end up clogging our landfills or in the worst case our oceans. You can help avoid this by using reusable bottles. You can do even more by filling them with water from the tap. It costs much less and is better for the planet to drink tap water.
Tip number 3: Switch off the lights
How many of you can honestly say that you have never heard your parents say “Did you switch off the light?”. Well, From now on your answer should be, “Yes!”. Electricity produces a lot of CO2 emissions, so leaving the lights on when you leave a room is adding insult to injury. Flicking a light switch only takes a split second.
Tip number four: Consume less, waste less
Almost all ways of producing things requires energy wich means CO2 emmissions. Many of the things we buy are made and produced in far away places. This means they need to be transported to Europe. The newest iPhone is out, and you really, really want it? Before you do, think twice. Do you really need it? If your current phone still works, why should you buy a new one? By reducing our consumption we can reduce the impact on the environment.
Tip number five: Plant a tree
Trees capture and store CO2. That is why they are so important in helping to fight climate change. The next time you surf the internet, forget about Google — use Ecosia instead. Ecosia is a surf engine that contributes to planting trees around the world. For every 45 searches, a tree is planted. Already more than 50 million trees have been planted thanks to this search engine. If everyone used it, it would make a huge difference.
Tip number six: Resist consumerism
In our consumer driven society, we are pulled into buying things we don’t really need. All these things need to be produced, usually in far-away places like China with raw materials sourced from other parts of the world. All of this emits a lot of CO2. However, there are still alternative ways to buy things without impacting as much the environment. One way is to buy recycled or repurposed goods. For example, there are many secondhand stores available right here in Brussels such as Think Twice, Foxhole, Melting Pot Kilo as well as websites like Vinted where you can find almost anything. So next time, ask yourself ‘do I need it and where can I get it locally?’
These are just a few easy ways that you can help fight climate change. No more excuses not to act!