Happy Earth Day! Today’s the day when we all pause to consider how our actions—large and small—impact the planet.
The good news is you don’t have to go to incredible lengths to make a difference.
Take a look at this quick and easy-to-implement list of nine things you can do TODAY to help make the Earth a greener, healthier place.
See if your utility company offers any energy-saving programs. Lots of energy providers offer rebates or the opportunity to buy energy-saving products on the cheap.
Fact: In 2020, using Wisconsin’s energy-saving program, 217 TDS associates purchased 5,932 LED light bulbs. Assuming all were installed, that’s a combined $792,565 in energy costs and the equivalent of removing 51.6 cars off the road each year.
Switch to online billing and unsubscribe from catalogs. You’ll be saving trees and the fuel it takes to deliver these.
Fact: Most people in America use at least seven trees each year, through wood, paper and other types of products. That is over 2 trillion trees!
Support the Great Global Cleanup and pick up trash while enjoying the outdoors. It is a great way to save that plastic bottle cap from the landfill while you are on your morning walk or jog!
Fact: TDS was one of the earliest participants in Wisconsin’s Adopt-A-Highway clean-up program.
Give up single-use plastics. Start by calculating your personal plastic consumption.
Fact: Depending on the source you consult, between 8-12 million tons of trash end up in the ocean annually. That’s about a garbage truck load every day.
Buy clothes made of all-natural fibers.
Fact: With each load of laundry, more than 700,000 synthetic microfibers are washed into our waterways. The New Scientist recently reported that microplastics found across the Arctic may be from laundry, saying that polyester fibers make up three-quarters of the microplastics pollution there.
Save electricity and turn off lights—and your monitor and computer—when you leave the room.
Fact: In 2008 an estimated $2.8 billion went to energy costs to power unused computers in the workplace alone—which equals more than 20 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions (the equivalent of the emissions from approximately four million cars!).
Choose food sold in glass and aluminum packaging.
Fact: The energy saved from recycling one glass bottle can run a 100-watt light bulb for four hours or a compact fluorescent bulb for 20 hours. Recycling one soda can will save enough energy to run a TV for three hours. Also, aluminum and glass can be recycled an infinite number of times without loss of quality.
Turn off the sink when you brush your teeth.
Fact: You could save five gallons of water a day with this simple change.
Change your diet to fight climate change by eating less meat. Try meatless Mondays! Check out some plant-based recipes.
Fact: Between 1,800 to 2,500 gallons of water go into producing a single pound of beef.
Make art, not waste! Rather than tossing something in the trash, consider if it can be repurposed in a creative way.
Fact: TDS’ Green Resource Group hosts a Recycled Art Show on Earth Day for associates of the company. From wine boxes turned into bird houses to hockey sticks turned into chairs, employees from around the company (and the country) are flexing their artistic side and saving the Earth.
By Missy Kellor and Cheryl McCollum