Green Living Starts With the Little Things

Each year our planet becomes more and more polluted. But it’s not all bad! Through Green Living we can learn to live in harmony with the natural environment, and reduce our impact on the Earth.Think of it like a bank account that we want to fill with money. We can build our environmental bank account by not taking more than we need, by minimising pollution and by giving back a little more than we take. This is also known as sustainable living. A fine example is the Pine Forest plantations of Canada, which grow quickly, and are easily replaced in our ever-growing demand for wood products. This is highly preferable when compared to the cutting down of Ancient or Tropical Rainforest. These Forests are irreplaceable in terms of the wood, and rich diversity of wildlife and natural eco-systems which have flourished amongst the trees.I’ve always been a big believer in planting trees! Whether it’s in our back yard, or by volunteering with a Green organisation, by planting trees we can all play a vital role. Trees really are the lungs of the planet, storing CO2 (a greenhouse gas) and exuding essential Oxygen for everyone to breath.So a green lifestyle is a personal choice. And it doesn’t need to be taken to extremes. Like most things, its best to start small then learn as you go. Little things you can do include starting with simple recycling of glass, and tins by popping them into your recycling bin.RecyclingSo what’s so great about recycling? By recycling we can reduce the mining of oil and coal needed to create the electricity and power to make our goods. It takes much less energy and resources to create a tin can from recycled materials, compared with sourcing the tin from a mine.Reduced power means less pollution is released into the atmosphere when we burn coal and oil in our power stations and industrial processes. Carbon dioxide (CO2) is one of the main pollutants released into the air when we burn oil or coal, and is known as a greenhouse gas. Greenhouses can be very hot places, and greenhouse gases are commonly thought to contribute to global warming, trapping the heat from the sun like a warm blanket around the Earth.Carbon FootprintThe amount of carbon dioxide we create indirectly through our demand for electricity and products is known as our Carbon footprint. In this case size does matter, and for footprints at least, a small one is a good thing!Recycling also means we reduce the need for mining raw materials such as iron ore. Open cast mining particularly, can have a very negative impact on valuable areas of natural habitat, as well as the rare species of plants and animals that live there. Witness the “super pits” in Western Australia; great for the economy, but not always so great for the environment.A Better WorldIt’s satisfying to know that through a green lifestyle we’re working towards a richer natural environment. And we know that if we all pull together, we can all make a huge difference in creating a better world for everyone.

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