Five things to consider on Earth Day

April 22 is Earth Day. On Earth Day this year it would be great to take some time out and consider how you could make every day Earth Day. Here are some thought starters

1. Wake up and smell the earth

Consider how you can make a better connection with the earth. This might be to spend less time inside and more time in nature. Walking, cycling, kayaking, running, swimming, camping and hiking will all help your health, and they will also kindle your love for the outdoors. If you love the outdoors, you will tend to care for it and look after it.

2. Consume less stuff

In the past year people used more than one and a half times what the earth can sustainably supply. This is only possible because the shortfall is provided by eating into the natural capital of the earth,. This in turn diminishes what the earth can supply next year, and so on. If this keeps going the earth will eventually become ‘bankrupt’. Most people don’t need all the stuff they have and could easily get by quite nicely with much less, even half.

3. Simplify and reduce waste

If you already have a lot of stuff, decluttering your home is a wonderful way to reduce that millstone around your neck. Having cupboards, sheds and garages full of stuff you don’t use, is a waste, it’s not much different from it sitting in landfill. Give it away or sell it. Throwaway packaging and plastic is harming wildlife, the ocean and even ourselves. Think of ways to use less plastic generally.

4. Create more well-being

Consider ways that will improve your well-being at the same time as helping the planet. The practice of environmental sustainability supports well-being in many ways. For example, walking instead of driving (at least some of the time) will improve your health and the earth’s health. Instead of shopping, go for a picnic. Instead of eating at home alone, invite some friends for dinner.

5. Get active

There are numerous conservation and environmental activities that will get you out and caring for nature. Consider doing some conservation work and get the whole family involved. Planting trees, removing noxious exotic plants, cleaning beaches and rivers all help the health of the earth. Learning about different native plants and animals, and the environment generally, will foster a better understanding and relationship with nature.

We only have one Earth and we need to stop harming it, and look after it instead.