Hi readers! My name is Grace Johnson, and this year I am writing a blog focused on sustainability. In each post, I will try out a new “trend” in sustainability and discuss its practicality, and if it actually helps the environment. Additionally, I will discuss whether I recommend the trend overall.
According to NASA’s Earth Observatory, global temperatures have been rising at an alarming rate since around 1880, and the rate continues to escalate rapidly due to human activity and waste. If humans do not make a conscious effort to minimize waste, reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and limit usage of natural resources, our atmosphere and environment will be permanently and severely damaged.
That being said, many people want to help the environment but are simply misled. They may be influenced by popular culture and ill-informed of benefits/drawbacks of trends or cannot incorporate strenuous activities into their everyday lives. I’m here to help.
I decided to write this blog around the time when using metal straws became very popular. Of course, using metal straws can reduce plastic waste, but try to take your thinking and research a step further. After a little more investigation, however, it is clear that the production and sale of metal straws actually lead to more harmful greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere, only furthering climate change’s damage, according to USAToday, The Observer, and countless other news outlets (ergo, you’re not actually saving the turtles).
I am here to be your trend reporter, tester and consultant. It’s important to be as sustainable as possible to help our Earth and future generations thrive, but it can be difficult to change your lifestyle to incorporate sustainability. That’s why I decided to report on the practicality of each trend. For example, for metal straws, they are very easy to get used to carrying around, but the cleaning process along with relatively high prices dock the utensil down a few points to an 8/10. Considering that they are harmful to the environment would bring it down to a 3/10.
Small changes can make big differences. Anywhere from lowering your meat consumption to thrifting instead of purchasing fast-fashion items to taking shorter showers can help our future immensely. It’s not about changing a couple peoples’ entire lifestyle, it’s about changing little aspects of the entire culture.
I’m not saying to throw out your metal straws and start using plastic ones again; you’ve already spent the money and that would simply be unproductive. Instead, I think it’s important to be fully aware of the actual impact of our good intentions.
Saving our beautiful planet is a hard task, but a necessary one. Even the little things mentioned in this blog can make a big difference if a lot of people take to them. We must all work together and do whatever possible to preserve what has been handed down to us, generation to generation. The generations before us have let us down, but we can be the generation that flips the switch; we can be the generation that saves the Earth if we put our minds to it.