You can do more on Earth Day than post a picture of yourself

Courtesy of flickr.com

Courtesy of flickr.com

Maggie Kirwin, Staff writer

Since 1970, April 22 has been a national holiday dedicated to conserving and protecting our mother, Earth. In the more recent years, Earth Day has become even more important to celebrate in the U.S. given the lack of government support to end the climate crisis from the former president. However, with President Biden, he has been making more strides, aiming towards cutting carbon emissions by as much as 52% by 2030, according to CNN Climate Change. 

As the government makes strides for a better world, individuals in small corners of the country have been finding their own ways to make small changes in their lives to improve the Earth. On Earth Day, people came together through social media to promote ways to conserve and reduce your carbon footprint through informational posts on Instagram stories. 

Despite the amount of environmentally conscious posts going up, many people have just used Earth Day as an excuse to post trendy pictures, which is not okay.

While this may seem like it is not a big deal, the more people use Earth Day to just promote themselves, the more the holiday loses its actual meaning. Instead of using Earth Day as an excuse to post pictures of yourself, find ways to better the environment and end the climate crisis. 

“Posting a photo of you in a pretty place won’t do anything to help the Earth, but posting a picture of you in a pretty place and then going to recycle your family’s garbage does do something,” junior Sophia Hartman said.

Hartman has been environmentally conscious since she was just 11 years old, starting with going vegetarian. This Earth Day she decided to help the environment by eating clean.

“I actually took the day and tried to eat almost completely vegan. I understand that one day of not eating animal products will end global warming, but that tiny impact it does make is good enough for me,” Hartman said.

Changing your diet a little bit can greatly impact the environment. Reduce your intake of meat and dairy products, but especially watch your seafood consumption. The fishing industry’s negative impact on the environment is astronomical due to the nets, buoys, fishing lines, and more accounting for 85% of plastic pollution on seamounts, ocean ridges, and the ocean floor, according to ecowatch.com.

Dedicating Earth Day to just eating plant-based or vegetarian impacts the environment positively, even if the task may seem minuscule. 

Additionally, you can do small tasks on Earth Day, like going zero waste for the day, using public transportation, or not using electricity for 1 hour. These are simpler decisions that are incredibly impactful. 

Another positive way to spend your Earth Day is by educating yourself. CNN Climate Change is a reliable source for information, along with learning the different ways countries are fighting the climate crisis on the United Nations Environment Program. UNEP gives lists about food waste, stats regarding biodiversity and air quality, and more.

If you would rather not read an article, watching documentaries is a quick and informative resource as well.

Netflix has many documentaries regarding different aspects of climate change. If you would like to learn more about the negative effects of the fishing industry, “Seaspiracy” is a thought-provoking documentary. There are many other topics as well and many other streaming services, like Hulu and Disney+, that have great documentaries. 

So, instead of just posting a picture on Earth Day of yourself on a tropical vacation, take action and help the environment. If every person changes their daily routine a little bit, the world could be a better place and future generations may have a chance at living on a healthy Earth. 

“Genuinely just do a little bit of your own research, find something that affects you in your life that climate change also affects,” Hartman said.