Trees we see them everywhere, demolish them without thinking and climb them because having fun is a must. But have you taken a moment to think what our plant would be without trees. As the biggest plants on the planet, they give us oxygen, store carbon, stabilize the soil and give life to the world's wildlife. Have you seen the movie Lorax or Wall-E? Both movies concept is not very far fetched.
With the Amazon being on fire, and most of it started by human hands only wanting to clear land for crops and grazing. Humans are destroying the planet, the only place we all call home.How in the world was there no deforesting laws in place!? With the Amazon being the biggest supplier for beef and paper I asked myself a few questions. One being even if we all donate money this time what about tomorrow, how can we limit our paper use daily and consume local grazed beef? Third being how important are trees and especially the Amazon Rain Forest?
Answering all those questions really made it clear that we all need to work together for there to be a change. If you had no idea how important that is okay, let's talk about it for just a sec. According to Business Insider "Amazon plays a major role in many of the processes that make our planet habitable: water cycles, weather patterns, and the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide. The rain forest is also home to more than 30 million people and over 10% of the world's biodiversity. Plants and trees take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen back into the air through the process of photosynthesis, keeping the atmosphere's carbon-dioxide levels in check. This is why the Amazon is often referred to as the "lungs of the planet" producing between 6 and 20 percent of the worlds oxygen.
Let's now turn our focus onto paper waste. In the US alone over 85,000,000 tons of paper is used in a year. Most of the waste produced is from packaging, shipping materials and junk mail. While paper can be recycled not very much of ends up recycled. About 80 percent of waste that is in our landfills could have been recycled. When the landfills are full where is the garbage and waste going to end up? Think Wall-E! Before you think that making a switch is going to require a lot truthfully all it takes is a little more effort and conscious behavior.
One of the top three items thrown away each year. I can personally say that I was able to save $32 a month by making this one change! Asking you to not purchase paper towels would be silly, plus I would be lie to you if I asked you to stop buying them when I still use paper towels. Instead make a few changes and you will be surprised at the change. Purchase recycled paper towels and washable towels. Get in a habit of only using paper towels for big messes, oil spills or cleaning the toilet, while using the washable towels and rags for hands, cleaning around the house, messes through out the day or whatever else you might use a paper towel for. Before you reach for one ask yourself could I use a washable towel for this?
Most toilet paper on store shelves may be biodegradable and forest approved but what they are not telling you is the concern. Possible containing fragrances, lotions, wheat, corn and/or glue, toilet paper is far from non-toxic. A process called dioxin (one of most toxic chemicals on the planet) is used to bleach the paper white using chlorine. Recycled paper seems like a good idea, until you find out that even after the paper is broken down and recycled ink, dyes and/or bpa are left on the paper. Saving the best for last formaldehyde, yes the word you hear always linking back to cancer is used to give it's wet strength. Completely shocked? Yes so was I, imaging all those harmful toxins in toilet paper that we use daily, multiple times are being absorb into your body. Switch over to a tree free toilet paper, made from 100 percent Bamboo Reel Toilet paper is durable, soft and good absorption.
Limit Car Trips
Car and Trucks combined emit 24 pounds of carbon dioxide per gallon of fuel. You might be asking how does that effect trees, simple really trees absorb the carbon dioxide and then release clean oxygen. The more carbon dioxide released into the air each day only increases as our tress decrease. While it also effects trees it also has a big impact on global warning, but that is for another day! To limit care trips a few tips are:
- Meal Plan
- Creating a meal plan and shopping list allows you to have to go to the store one time that week. Not only will you have everything, you will limit the extra trip to the nearest store to get something little. You will probably end up spending more money on the item plus the time it took to get it!
- Plan Your Errands
- Planning your errands will allow you to start at one stop working your way back to home, stopping on the way. This is a huge time saver also.
- Travel during none rush hour times
- When traveling the last thing you want to do is sit in bumper to bumper traffic. While I understand it is not always optional, not having to sit in traffic is better for your mental state and our planet.
If you are not already enrolled in paperless billing, when you receive a bill or bank statement, do you make the payment via phone or online or send a check back with the envelope and paper insert? Enrolling in paperless billing or banking eliminates at least 5 envelopes each month. That adds up to a lot of paper if you count the envelope, the envelope they send in to send back to them, the bill 1-3 pages, advertising pieces included and bank statement 1-99 pages. How many papers would you save each month? When you ready to make the switch be sure to contact the companies because some will reward you with either an amount off your bill each month or wave the monthly fee. Does't hurt to ask right?
Plant a Tree
Plant a tree in your yard or if that is not an option, contact your town and ask to plant a tree in your honor. With a donation they are usually more then happy to plant a tree! Now i'm not saying go an buy a super expensive tree, find a local tree farm and buy a baby tree. They are cheaper then bigger more developed trees. Another option is to support the One Tree Planted non-profit organization. With as little as a Dollar donations you can plant a tree in a region of your choosing. This organization is working on rebuilding what has be deforested by farms and big corporations. Check them out here
We can all make these changes, next time you need Toilet Paper or Paper Towels makes the perfect time to make the switch. Have you already made the switch? Do you have any more tips or ideas please leave a comment below, I would love to hear your thoughts. Let's all work together, our planet health depends on it.