Green Goals are now included in the GreenCrabs newsletter!
Note: Newsletter links are to Canva documents.
Happy November, MASC! During the November holiday season, we often relax our sustainability practices to accommodate to the needs and wants of Thanksgiving. However, it only takes a few extra steps to add eco-friendly exercises to this holiday.
Every year, around Thanksgiving time, American families dispose of an average of 1,160 pounds of food. On Thanksgiving dinner alone, approximately 305 million pounds of food are wasted. The production, transportation, and disposal of food can contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, deforestation, and water pollution. By adopting sustainable practices, such as minimizing food waste and opting for eco-friendly travel methods, we can reduce the environmental impact of our Thanksgiving celebrations.
Prevent food waste – When food shopping, only buy ingredients that you absolutely need. This will reduce the chance of buying more food than you need – saving food and money!
• If many guests are planning to bring food to the event, plan in advance to coordinate who is bringing what dish. This planning will ensure that there are no repetitive dishes that could possibly lead to food waste.
• Freeze unfinished food scraps! If you have food scraps from food preparation, including meat trimmings or vegetable cores, store them in your freezer for future use. These scraps can be used as flavoring or ingredients for future recipes.
• Compost your food scraps that cannot be reused or repurposed. Make sure to toss organics in the bin or collection container while leaving out utensils, plastics, meat, dairy, and other non-compostable products.
Offset holiday travel – Instead of traveling long distances, consider exploring local destinations or events. There are many events and attractions that you can visit without the need for excessive travel.
• Opt for more sustainable modes of transportation such as trains and buses rather than planes and individual cars. Public transportation often has lower emissions per passenger compared to individual vehicles.
• Bring reusable items with you, including water bottles, coffee cups, and shopping bags in order to reduce single-use plastic generated during your trip. When disposing of waste, do so responsibly and sustainably.
By practicing sustainability during Thanksgiving, you can inspire others to do the same. Sharing your values and choices can encourage family, friends, and loved ones to adopt more sustainable practices in their own lives, creating a ripple effect that promotes positive change. By making conscious choices today, we contribute to a healthier and more sustainable world for future generations. Overall, practicing sustainability during Thanksgiving aligns with the principles of gratitude and compassion.
For more Green Thanksgiving recommendations, please review these outside websites:
Spooky season is upon us! Yearly, Halloween creates thousands of tonnes of plastic waste–not to mention hundreds of millions of dollars worth of candy. That’s a lot of waste for one day. It is important to celebrate Halloween sustainably to minimize the environmental impact of the festivities. By making sustainable choices, we can reduce waste, conserve resources, and protect the environment. This includes considering eco-friendly options for costumes, decorations, and treats. Here are some ways to mindfully go about this All Hallows Eve:
Costumes: Make your own! 83% of Halloween costumes are made using non-recyclable oil-based plastics; meaning they are set for landfill. That means that about 2000 tonnes of plastic waste is generated, all for one-day use. Instead, make your costumes from old clothes–and let your imagination run wild!
• Thrift! If you can’t find anything good in your own closet, visit a local consignment shop to find materials for a costume.
Pumpkins: Don’t throw away your jack-o-lanterns! The discarded pumpkins will create methane as they decompose, contributing to greenhouse gas emissions. Instead, compost them or have wildlife eat them. Many areas have sites available for residents to drop off food waste, such as MOM’s Market and local government buildings. Some dropoff points can be found here.
• Fill your pumpkin with seeds to feed birds or wildlife.
• Buy locally-produced candy, if possible. This is a great excuse to visit your local market!
• Look for treats with minimal packaging.
• Stop giving away candies that many kids don’t like – does anyone really like candy corn?
It is imperative to celebrate Halloween sustainably in order to reduce the environmental impact and promote a greener future. By adopting sustainable practices during Halloween, we not only contribute to a healthier planet but also inspire others to make environmentally conscious choices in their own celebrations. Let us celebrate Halloween in a way that brings joy while being mindful of our impact on the environment!
For more spooky sustainability suggestions please check out these websites:
As training grounds for critically-thinking, solution-finding students and educators, schools must invest in environmental education and awareness, allocate resources for eco-friendly initiatives, and foster a culture of sustainability. By making such efforts, schools can gradually transition towards more eco-friendly practices and contribute to a greener future. These practices will also build a future base of more environmentally-aware voters and industry leaders.
What can you do as a student or educator to bring about and implement greener practices in school? Here are some examples that you can practice.
Select Eco-Friendly School Supplies – Opt for recycled or sustainable school supplies such as investing in products with minimal packaging or made from renewable materials. Additionally, using reusable lunch containers and water bottles instead of disposable ones reduces waste and prevents single-use plastic from ending up in landfills.
Sustainable Transportation – By choosing walking and biking over motorized transportation, students can contribute to a more environmentally friendly urban environment, while also promoting healthier lifestyles and stronger communities. Walking and biking produce zero tailpipe emissions, unlike vehicles that run on fossil fuels. This means they do not contribute to the emission of greenhouse gasses, which are major drivers of climate change.
Digital Materials – Whenever possible, use digital resources instead of printed ones. This reduces paper consumption and saves trees. Digital materials are not physical objects that can become waste or contribute to litter. Paper waste from outdated or discarded materials can be significant, while digital files can be easily updated, shared, and reused.
Properly Utilize Recycling/Composting Stations – Ensure that there are clearly labeled recycling and compost bins throughout the school while also educating students about proper recycling/composting practices. Recycling and composting divert materials from landfills and incinerators, reducing the overall amount of waste that ends up in these disposal sites. This conserves valuable landfill space and helps prevent the release of greenhouse gasses from decomposing waste.
Participate in Local Environmental Clubs/Organizations – Local environmental organizations work to address pressing environmental issues in your community. By getting involved, you can actively contribute to positive changes that directly affect your surroundings. This knowledge can help you make informed decisions in your daily life and become an advocate for environmental issues.
Prioritize Energy Efficiency – When not in use, turn off lights, computers, and other electronic devices. Many technological devices and systems require energy to operate, and much of this energy comes from non-renewable sources such as fossil fuels. Improving energy efficiency helps reduce the carbon footprint and environmental impact of technology use.
For more sustainability in school tips, please refer to the following websites: Note that MASC does not make any warranties about the completeness, reliability, and accuracy of the information on other websites.
In July, Maryland saw some of its hottest days. As the weather continues to blaze on, here are some ways that you can stay cool without cranking air conditioning to the max all month long:
1. Drink a lot of water! – Proper hydration regulates your body’s temperature internally and will prevent heat exhaustion, making sure you stay healthy and cool. As recommended by the CDC, when working in the heat, drink 1 cup of water every 15-20 minutes. Drinking at shorter intervals is more effective than drinking large amounts of water infrequently.
2. Close curtains/blinds – If you have windows that face the sun anytime between the morning through the late afternoon, close the curtains/blinds to keep the sun from directly heating up your home. Additionally, you can also opt for blackout curtains to insulate your room and minimize the temperature increases that occur throughout the day.
3. The rule of thumb for air conditioning – As temperatures rise, the need for air conditioning becomes inevitable. If you turn on the A/C, don’t let the temperature dip below 70˚F in an effort to cool your house quickly–your A/C will just run longer to reach that temperature and, in doing so, will create temperature imbalances that are hard to maintain. The US Department of Energy recommends keeping your thermostat at 78˚F in the summer–the highest comfortable temperature that will minimize energy and cooling bills.
4. Breathable materials – Your clothes obviously play a big role in how hot/cold you may be. In the summertime, it’s especially important to opt for breathable fabrics–cotton and linens–to stay cool. This applies not only to wearable garments, but also to your sheets and blankets. The lower the thread count, the more breathable the cotton is. Check out Good On You to find ethical producers of breathable clothing.
5. Install energy-efficient bulbs – Incandescent light bulbs generate a higher temperature than LED light bulbs. While changing bulbs might not create a massive temperature shift in your entire house, it will be very cost-effective and noticeable in smaller areas. Therefore, switch the bulbs in the areas you sit in most often for an observable difference in temperature.
So how can you take part in ecotourism? Here are some suggestions to get you started.
• Stay at local and eco-friendly accommodations – The average hotel generates 1 cubic yard of waste per room per month. Understandably, summertime is the high season for hotels. In order to reduce the carbon footprint your next hotel stay leaves, consider an ecolodge or eco-hotel! These environmentally mindful accommodations take careful measures to reduce carbon footprints, and can be easily found here! Additionally, supporting local hotels directs capital back to the local communities–which are often left degraded from the impacts of large franchises monopolizing tourist hotspots.
• Local attractions + ecotours – Visiting local attractions strengthen the surrounding communities and economies and can help you learn more about the area’s history. Ecotours are a prime example of a noninvasive local attraction–allowing you to explore the best spots while also returning profits back to the local community.
• Active/public transportation – Active transportation such as biking, walking, and running are sustainable alternatives to traditional motorized transportation. Public transportation is also sustainable as it reduces carbon emissions, while also being cost-effective for most individuals. To find nearby public transit stops while traveling within the States, click here.
• Admire from a distance – The only footprint you want to leave on your next travel destination is your literal one. With respect to nature and local communities, make sure to take a hands-off approach, protecting the local wildlife and environment. Even something as simple as a flower can have dangerous effects–being considered vandalism and sometimes even leading to the introduction of an invasive species.
• Ocean-friendly products – Most sun products–including lotions, oils, and sprays–have been reported to damage coral reefs. Coral reefs have some of the highest levels of biodiversity on the Earth–and their health is interlinked with most fish and marine organisms. Two chemicals common in sunscreen products, oxybenzone, and octinoxate, have been found to cause harm to coral reefs, in addition to many other chemicals. To make your next trip to the beach a more coral-conscious one, start by opting for better sunscreen. All in all, try to find alternatives to your products that are environmentally friendly and will not harm surrounding ecosystems.
• Go where the locals go – Locals are typically able to suggest helpful advice and insight to tourists. If you are interested in learning more about local culture and connecting to communities, ask! In addition, visiting popular local attractions that locals recommend will allow you to expand your pre-existing knowledge of the location and value the special experience.
For more ecotourism-related information, please visit the following sites:
The Chesapeake Bay is one of the most significant factors in Maryland’s cultural and ecological identity–really, it’s what puts us on the map! The Chesapeake Bay is home to a variety of unique organisms, including the iconic blue crab, Eastern oyster, striped bass (also known as rockfish or striper), and Atlantic menhaden. Without the Bay, Maryland wouldn’t be where it is today- our economy and citizens depend on its vast resources. However, the Chesapeake Bay faces many threats, some of which include nutrient runoff, sediment pollution, and over-fishing. While the Bay has seen improvements in some of its health indicators, others remain stagnant or decreasing. We, as students of Maryland, have the responsibility to take the initiative and restore the Chesapeake Bay so we can keep enjoying its many benefits for years to come. To find out more about the health of the Bay, click here for information provided by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
What Can You Do?
• Organize a Stream clean-up – As a watershed, the Chesapeake derives its waters from six states and DC. As a result, stream pollution that occurs upstream will end up in the Chesapeake Bay. Organize a stream clean-up with friends or family to help remove trash and other waste from our streams.
• Set up a compost bin – When we throw food away into a landfill, it can end up polluting both the air and water with harmful chemical compounds. Help prevent this from occurring by keeping a compost bin. You can read more about how to set up a personal compost bin here.
• Natural weed killers – Weed killers and other pesticides wash off of vegetation and enter our waterways. Use environmentally friendly alternatives instead, such as vinegar or soapy water. Read more about natural pest and weed control here.
• Volunteer with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation! – One of the most enjoyable and worthwhile ways to help the Chesapeake Bay is to give it some of your time–volunteer! Check out the links below to explore the many ways that you can engage in service with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
April 22nd is Earth Day–a reminder for everyone to do whatever they can to incorporate more sustainable choices into their everyday lives.
The first Earth Day was celebrated in 1970 when Wisconsin Senator Nelson organized a national demonstration to call attention to environmental issues. About 50 years later, we can keep carrying the torch by reminding ourselves of our responsibilities to the Earth. Here are some fun ways that you can celebrate Earth Day 2023!
1) Plant a tree
Something so very easy, and yet so very fun and rewarding. Roughly 15 billion trees are cut down each year, so you can do your part by planting a little tree in your own backyard. Here is a list of trees recommended by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Make sure to receive permission from your parent or guardian if you are planting a tree in your backyard and to check any necessary community rules and regulations regarding tree planting.
2) Participate in service (April is Global Volunteer Month!)
If you get any time throughout the month, try and find some student service learning opportunities near you, to give back to the Earth. This can include green scaping, park clean-ups, etc. Reach out to local parks, schools, and libraries to find out about events near you! Some examples of community service include attending or organizing a trash or stream cleanup, creating resources on how your community can be more sustainable, or helping to weed a local community garden.
3) Run an e-waste drive
E-waste includes any electronics that have been discarded after use–and they make up 70% of the toxic waste in our landfills. Run a drive to organize and collect any used electronics in your community to reduce the amount of toxic material ending up in landfills. You support MASC by simply dusting off your old electronics, placing them in a box, printing the FREE pre-paid shipping label, and taking it to the nearest FedEx to ship. 100% of the proceeds from the recycling of these items will go towards funding MASC, so we can continue to have our amazing events and conferences. Directions are linked here! To find out more about cleaning e-waste, click here.
Environmental Policies this Legislative Session –In order to make Maryland as green as we can, it’s important that we stay in the loop with environmental policy circulating in the 2023 Legislative Session. Here is a quick guide on how to get started!
• MyMGA Tracking Account: In order to begin navigating the environmental policy being introduced this Maryland Legislative Session, you need to know where to look. Start by creating a MyMGA Tracking Account, linked here. This will allow you to find and keep track of specific bills that you’re interested in.
Finding Environmental Legislature: To find specifically environmental policy, look through the legislature proposed by specific committees–like the Environment and Transportation Committee or the Education, Energy, and Environment Committee. You can also filter by looking through Legislature filed under the Department of the Environment.
Next Steps: Once you have found a bill that you’re interested in, you can pin it to your MyMGA list(s), which can be organized by theme, committee, (etc.). That way, you can stay updated on bill hearings.
Testifying: If you feel really strongly about a bill, you can also choose to testify at one of the bill’s hearings–by giving a piece of written or verbal testimony that presents your support in favor of or against a bill. You can do so in an individual capacity, or through an organization you’re part of, like your regional SGA or a council that is interested in testifying.
Understanding Legislation: On the MyMGA website, bill pages will look like this:
Here are some key details to point out:
1: The timeline of the bill shows you where it is in the Legislative Process–if it’s in its original chamber (where it was introduced–Senate or House of Delegates), being heard in the opposite chamber, etc.
2: In addition to the timeline, here you can see exactly when the next hearing for the bill is.
3: The Fiscal and Policy Note is an analysis prepared by the Department of Legislative Services, which basically sums up what the costs associated with the bill would be, as well as an in-depth analysis of current policy on the topic–and how the bill will vary.
4: Clicking on the video icon will direct you towards the committee hearing of the bill, where you can hear testimony on it!
Happy New Year! Take this new year as an opportunity to start fresh, and set a resolution to make more sustainable choices. Before you begin, take a minute to understand the specific impacts that you, as an individual, have on the earth. Click here to figure out your Ecological Footprint, which is your impact on the earth in terms of resources needed to sustain you, and find out how many earths we would need if everyone lived like you.
Now, every little choice we make or don’t make has a monumental impact on the earth. To have a neutral, or better yet, positive impact, we can start by taking small steps towards more mindful lifestyles. This year, set a resolution to be more proactive about your ecological footprint by creating personal and specific goals. Here are some ideas to get you started:
• Consuming fewer meat products! Meat production is heavily taxing on the environment–through ways like greenhouse gas emissions, deforestation, soil degradation, large rates of water consumption, and the creation of coastal dead zones. In fact, the cattle industry alone accounts for 40% of all methane emissions from food production. While your resolution doesn’t necessarily have to make you vegetarian, consider limiting your meat intake in the new year.
• Start composting! Composting can be an easy and passive way to reduce your ecological footprint–and benefits everyone involved. You’re reducing the amount of waste ending up in a landfill, and making a natural fertilizer for your soil. It can be as easy as throwing your food scraps in a wooden bin in your backyard and throwing some worms into the pile to decompose the organic matter for you. Check out the MASC Environmental Resources to get more specific information on how to get started with composting.
• Be a conscious consumer! Being sustainable doesn’t necessarily mean completely changing your lifestyle overnight–you can start by setting a goal to be more mindful of what you purchase. Think about how the item was created and how it will be disposed of, to understand exactly what it is that you’re buying. When shopping for clothes, steer clear of fast fashion–which has an environmentally disastrous past and a downhill future. Fast fashion is produced in horrible conditions, and its low quality will lead to a small lifetime, inevitably producing a lot of waste. Instead, opt for higher quality clothes that might be more costly, but will be much better in the long run.
• Take shorter showers! It seems like such an elementary idea, but reducing your shower time can, directly and indirectly, lead to a much more sustainable lifestyle. Conserving water is crucial, and yet we continue to use it mindlessly; You can start by turning the shower/tap off when brushing your teeth or shampooing, or setting a time limit for your shower. Simply reducing your shower time by 2 minutes saves, on average, 16 liters of water–which adds up a lot over the year.
Hopefully, these ideas gave you a spark to make more green choices in the new year. You can start by evaluating the small decisions that you make in your everyday life, and understanding just how those choices add up–to create a green resolution that is unique to you. That’s all for now, Happy New Year!
Happy Holidays everyone! As you’re going about buying presents and preparing for the holidays, keep in mind the simple things you can do to make the season more sustainable–so that our Earth can thrive for many more holiday seasons to come! Here are some ways to make this winter white season, a little more green:
4.6 million pounds of wrapping paper are discarded each year, and half of this ends up in landfills. If your wrapping paper has metallic foil or glitter on it, it is not recyclable. Instead, opt for:
• White or brown craft paper–and decorate it yourself for a personal touch!
• Old maps
• A bandana or silky scarf
• A biodegradable gift bag that can be reused by the receiver
• Not wrapping your gift (it’s just as valuable!)
Decorating the house with lights has always been an integral of the season–here’s how to make it even better! Go for energy-saving LED lights that use 80% less energy than conventional lights. They’re cooler–reducing the risk of fire/getting burnt–and you can often connect up to 25 strings end-to-end without overloading your socket.
You can also opt for solar lights! Their small solar panel(s) charge during the day and allow the lights to shine bright at night; despite having a higher upfront cost than the average incandescent light, they save a lot more money in the long run.
Christmas trees–whether real or artificial–contribute heavily to landfill waste each holiday season. Artificial trees are made from PVC and other plastics, and while being manufactured, produce harmful petrochemicals. Some alternatives include a contemporary all-wood tree made with dowels, or one made entirely from recycled plastic–rated to last 40 years!
If your family has to have a real Christmas tree each year, find an organic tree farm near you, and avoid the harmful pesticides and chemical colorants often used on evergreens. The best option is a potted, native tree that you can plant when the holiday season is over. A native fir tree to Maryland is the Balsam Fir. You can read more about identifying conifers here.
Instead of buying your loved ones new “stuff,” give them the gift of new experiences–certificates for spa services, restaurants, escape rooms, and memberships are all ways to give an awesome gift while also being sustainable. Even better, give a donation in their name to a charity/fund that they support!
When shopping for the big holiday feast, shop organic and local. Bring reusable bags and go to local farmers’ markets or farms to obtain home-grown goods. A locally farmed and sustainable ham will always taste much better than the factory farm meat from thousands of miles away.
Welcome to November! With the cooling temperatures, it’s easy to become overreliant on heaters. Here are some ways you can conserve energy during the fall season:
2. Seal cracks and leaks: Check your doors, windows, and walls for any cracks, and seal them with caulk! This minimizes the amount of heat escaping from your home.
October is the season of fall decorations! Here are some ways you can be sustainable during the spooky season:
1. Avoid throwing your pumpkins away in the trash. They create harmful methane waste in landfills. Instead, compost them or break them open and have wildlife eat them. Many areas have sites available for residents to drop off food waste, such as MOM’s Market and local government buildings, which can be found with a simple Google search!
2. Avoid excessive buying. Do you need all those new sweaters, or can you wear some from last year? Is that spooky fashion wear something you’ll keep for a couple of years or throw away right after Halloween is over?
4. Spend time outside! Go watch the leaves change color with a reusable water bottle or mug. Spending time each day with the environment has mental health benefits that can immediately be felt!
Is it compostable?
Most food waste can go into compost bins or sites, but avoid throwing greasy food or protein as this will destroy composting systems
Go green and eat less meat!
The food and agriculture industry generates CO2 and methane, which damage the ozone layer and contribute to the greenhouse effect. The meat industry specifically damages biodiversity, as more and more land is converted to land for raising slaughtered animals. Manure from animals flows into watersheds, increasing nitrogen and phosphorus in our water and contributing to algae blooms and dead zones.
In essence, it’s important that consumers eat less meat. For August, we recommend that you make one of the following fun non-meat recipes:
Meatless food options don’t have to be processed bean patties- there are a plethora of resources online with recipes that don’t have meat. Additionally, we ask that you dedicate at least three meals for each month where you don’t cook with meat- the little contributions added together will make a difference.
What positive impact will you have on the environment today? We have a suggestion that requires little effort yet is crucial to combat detrimental chemicals: start creating rain gardens! Rain gardens are created by making a steep area in your residential back/ front yard and “placing” a garden there which rain can run into. These spaces absorb chemicals before they run off into your water. Think of it as a craft project that can reduce the damage to our waterways! By keeping a rain garden where the path of rain can take its course, you are doing both yourself and the bay a favor.
This article (outside source) explains how to make a rain garden: https://www.familyhandyman.com/project/how-to-build-a-rain-garden-in-your-yard/
This month, be aware of how you use water and how you can help conserve it! Simple everyday activities we do without a second thought may contaminate our water sources or, just as badly, compromise the sustainability of our water usage. We are often unaware of harmful practices, from plastic water bottles to improper waste disposal or gutter cleaning, which can contaminate our waters. So, this month, let us take action against this!
It may be helpful to first research – read an article, watch a video or two – and learn a bit more about water sustainability. Once you grasp the idea, try to use reusable water bottles, and when disposing of liquids, make sure it is not in an uncontrolled urban environment. Check twice to ensure your trash does not end up on roads, waterways, or sidewalks, and make sure to discard liquids into sinks instead of your everyday trash bag.
If gardening, try to limit your use of fertilizers or pesticides. You can even clean your house gutters before the rain takes with it all of the harmful chemicals that accumulate! With each of these actions, you can prevent dangerous runoff with the potential to pollute ecosystems in our waters. The nitrogen and phosphorus our plastic bottles, trash, gutters, and gardening chemicals release onto groundwater can wash up into bays and overstimulate harmful aquatic growth. Next month we will introduce you to an innovative way that you can prevent these recurring problems.
Alternatively, the most convenient of all is to visit 41pounds.org. This online service can help eliminate 80–95 percent of junk mailings by contacting dozens of direct marketers on your behalf. A one-time fee of $41 covers all adults in your household for five years. The best part is that a third of this fee is donated to an environmental organization of your choice! Let’s all join the effort to save the trees!
The next time you go to a grocery store, consider using reusable shopping bags. If you do not have any, buy some! Reusable shopping bags limit the amount of plastic that pollutes the earth and are a great way to be environmentally friendly!
However, if you end up using plastic bags, make sure to reuse those bags once or twice, and do not just throw them away. We always have to remember to keep the three R’s in mind: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle.
So, the next time you go shopping, remember to use reusable shopping bags and always have an environmentally friendly mindset! Shop green!
Advocate for stores/eateries in Maryland to stop putting non-reusable utensils in carryout bags meant to go home. If people are ordering from home, there is not much use for plastics and other non-reusable items in bags. Why place plastic spoons, forks, and knives in bags when customers can use reusable utensils found in their homes. This green goal can start at a small scale (with smaller-sized businesses) and branch out to bigger stores, restaurants, and eatery chains within Maryland. This green goal will efficiently reduce the usage of plastics in many places. You can be a part of this timely change by making it your priority to indicate that you will be using your own utensils during the ordering process!
Colder weather is approaching so as you freshen up your wardrobe, try to shop at sustainable stores and companies for warmer clothes! Brands such as Levi’s and Patagonia have positive impacts on our environment. While some fast fashion companies create vast amounts of pollution and waste. According to statistics and research, many other companies have a harmful impact on the environment, too. (outside source: https://www.vox.com/2019/9/12/20860620/fast-fashion-zara-hm-forever-21-boohoo-environment-cost.)
It is also important to note that once you make any purchases of clothes, do not throw out your old ones! Try to give them a new life by donating them to your local clothing drop-off locations!
Here is an article that you can use to make your own determination of what brands to support (outside source: https://www.sustainably-chic.com/blog/fast-fashion-brands-to-avoid).
As students are settling in and adapting to their school environment, we challenge you to waste zero school or stationery supplies. A few strategies that will help you accomplish this goal is to use what you already have! Don’t rebuy if there are lost or forgotten supplies lying around your house. In order to be eco-friendly, there are many other options to resort to such as donating or recycling supplies that may not be useful to you anymore. Lastly, if some items on your shopping list cannot be satisfied, search for them around the web on secondhand online businesses like eBay!
As we welcome summer with open arms, our challenge is how to beat the heat and stay environmentally friendly. Air conditioning units require the use of hydrofluorocarbons(HFC), a group of compounds that tear holes in the ozone layer. By using shades, setting units to higher temperatures, utilizing fans, and keeping an eye out for HFC alternatives we can transition to more environmentally friendly air conditioning practices. Check out the Climate Institute´s website to learn more about HFCs. If you know of any unused refrigerants (gases like Freon), contact Tradewater to see how to dispose of them safely!
Let’s talk about drying clothes for a second. An average family of four uses over a ton of carbon a year to dry their clothes. One way to reduce your carbon footprint is by drying your clothes on the line. There are also plenty of indoor clothing lines available. If a drier is necessary, think about programming it to stop when the clothes are dry. For more information about drying machines go to https://www.greenamerica.org/green-living/ditch-your-dryer. Enjoy the sunshine!!
March is the month for Meatless Mondays! Meat production contributes about 14.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Some of the ways meat is bad for the environment are through deforestation, fertilizer production, methane released from the animals and manure, and transportation including refrigeration. A single quarter-pound burger requires 425 gallons of water, which is the water needed to sustain 1,700 thirsty people. Additionally, 75% of agricultural land is used for meat production. Head to Monday Campaigns to learn more about meat production!
As the new presidential administration begins, it is important that we, as student leaders, understand the Biden Administration’s stance on the environment and read about their policy and plans for the next four years. Head to https://joebiden.com/climate-plan/ to see what his campaign promises about climate change.
As the holiday season draws to a close, it’s an important time to reflect on our national waste culture. The US creates the most amount of trash per capita and exported 436 million kg of trash to other countries in 2019. We must focus on reducing and reusing our plastic. This month’s challenge is two-fold: choose to buy second-hand and sustainably sourced goods and donate what you don’t need. Local women’s shelters and second-hand stores are great places to bring your used toys.
Use the hashtag #mascgreenchallenge and tag @md.stuco to celebrate your work!
Many of your local divisional and county-level officials may have changed or been re-elected in the first few weeks of November. This month, MASC challenges you to both learn about these elected officials, as well as speak to them about environmental issues within your jurisdiction. These topics can be things the previous administration was working on or ideas you have to improve the overall status of the environment! To see who your appointed officials are by county, you can visit https://elections.maryland.gov/elections/2020/results/General/index.html, and click on your county!
Be sure to continue to chart your progress using #MASCgoesgreen!
Turn your thermostat down to 68°F.
As the weather starts to change it is important to change your thermostat. Each degree change could save your household three percent on energy costs. Also, consider turning that heating system down when everyone leaves the house for extended periods of time (i.e. for in-person school or work).
There are also passive ways to decrease energy usage. For example, extra insulation can reduce the amount of energy needed to heat the house.
The Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries (rivers, streams, and canals), is one of the things that put the Maryland region “on the map”! Whether you are right near the water or not, it is very likely that there is a stream, river, or canal in your county that connects to the Chesapeake. Known for its accessibility to boaters, good weather, and competitive sailboat racing, the Chesapeake has become considered one of the nation’s finest waterways. In addition to the personal luxuries of the Bay, it also is one of the largest supporters of the Maryland economy.
Although the “health” of the Bay has become much better in recent years, there is still a long way to go! This month your #mascgreengoal is to research current initiatives in Maryland that are in place to help the Bay, as well as how you can mold these initiatives to specifically help your county!
Make sure to keep track of your work by tagging @md.stuco and using the hashtag #mascgreenchallenge.
MASC wants you to focus on Environmental Justice this month. Before getting into the challenge, let’s answer the question: What is Environmental Justice? Across our country and the globe environmental burdens disproportionately affect poor and minority communities while environmental benefits are disproportionately enjoyed by more privileged communities. What does this look like? Green Spaces, bike trails, safe drinking water, and parks are examples of environmental benefits. Toxic waste, landfills, incinerators, sewage backups, airports, highways, and poor drinking water are examples of environmental burdens. Poor and minority communities often have limited access to alternative housing and jobs, as well as less political and economic power to change their situation. Increased cases of asthma and obesity can be linked to restricted access to parks and fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as the surplus of pollutants like ozone and particle pollution that plague vulnerable communities. Flint, Michigan is an unfortunate example of the lack of environmental justice, but there are sadly many examples of environmental racism in Maryland. The sewage backups in Baltimore are one example of an environmental justice concern.
We challenge you to research the environmental justice concerns around Maryland and write a letter to one of your representatives to deal with these issues!! Additionally, ask yourself, who is affected by your trash and carbon footprint?
Make sure to keep track of your work by tagging @md.stuco and using the hashtag #mascgreenchallenge.
What is the green challenge of the month?
The Green Challenge of the Month is a new initiative led by the MASC Environmental Affairs Coordinators, Henry and Ember. Each month, a new “challenge” will be published in the bulletin for students to work toward! Record your progress by tagging @md.stuco and using hashtag #mascgreenchallenge
August Green Challenge of the Month: Research no-idling zones in preparation for the 2020-21 school year!
Hello, student leaders of MASC! The Chesapeake’s six-state, a 64,000-square-mile watershed, is home to more than 18 million people and 3,000 species of plants and animals, including us. It is important that we help to save it! This month we want to shed light on the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. This foundation works hard to save the bay by educating communities, engaging public leaders, acting through litigation, and coordinating cleanups.
Here’s how you can support CBF and protect the bay!
Follow CBF on social media to keep up with their work and events. Twitter: @chesapeakebay Instagram: @chesapeakebayfoundation
Join a group in your area that helps conserve the bay with this link. https://www.chesapeakebay.net/action/join
Advocate! Urge your legislators to support or draft legislation to keep the bay clean.
Stop using fertilizers on your grass. The runoff created from the rain washes it into the Chesapeake Bay which can cause eutrophication (excess nutrients that create dead zones in the water).
Organize a community or school event! This event can be dedicated to planting trees or cleaning up trash along the bay. You can even coordinate with CBF.
Try using natural cleaning products. These products end up going down the drain, and if they include chemicals, they could be harmful to both your health and the watershed.
Be sure to post yourself completing this month’s Green Goal and tag MASC!
Instagram: @md.stuco Twitter: @MDStuCo
Hello, MASC! As many of you may know, Earth Day is on April 22, 2019. On this day, people from all around the globe band together and are just a little bit closer to a healthier planet. We want our student leaders to be involved! After all, as Mahatma Gandhi said, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” We have come a long way since the first Earth Day in 1970, but we need to make even more tremendous steps forward if we want to truly make the change needed.
Here are just a few simple ways that you can get involved in Earth Day this year:
• Learn – Environmental literacy and learning about what exactly is going on with our planet is a monumental part of working towards solving the issue. Be sure to educate yourself and others on climate change, environmental justice, and more. The faster we are all knowledgeable about an issue, the faster we can solve it.
Earth is only one day of the year. We must work each and every day to maintain the planet that we live on! Here are a couple of ways to do just that:
Be sure to post yourself completing this month’s Green Goal and tag MASC!
Instagram: @md.stuco Twitter: @MDStuCo
Hello, student leaders! Water is essential to life as we know it. It is such an integral factor of the life cycle that it is the first thing researchers check for when trying to find life in space. Despite the fact that about 70% of the world is covered in water, only about 2.5% of it is fresh, and only 1% of that is easily accessible. Therefore, as student leaders and members of our global community, we need to be mindful of water pollution and water scarcity. Many of us are lucky enough to have access to clean water, but 844 million people lack even a basic drinking water service according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
Here are just a few simple ways that you can combat this water crisis in your everyday life:
Be sure to post yourself completing this month’s Green Goal and tag MASC!
Instagram: @md.stuco Twitter: @MDStuCo
Hello student leaders! As you all may know, our Earth happens to just be at the sweet spot in our solar system to support life. We are fortunate enough to enjoy the biodiversity the Earth brings because of this. However, our biodiversity is rapidly declining as you are reading this due to things like extinction, climate change, hunting, habitat loss, and more. All of these issues are driven by human activity. Humans have caused this, and humans can fix this, but we only have so much time to do so. As student leaders, we must get involved as much as possible because this is the world that which we will spend the rest of our lives. This is the world that our children will live in. The following ideas are only some things that we can do.
Instagram: @md.stuco Twitter: @MDStuCo
Happy New Year MASC! Many people often use this time of year as motivation to get fit and reduce their waistline, but we should also keep in mind the environment. Let’s start off the new year with environmentally conscience resolutions. One thing to keep in mind is waste. Most people produce 4.4 ounces of waste per day which adds up in the long run!
Here are some minor adjustments that you can add to your daily routine to reduce your “waste-line”:
These are only some ideas to get you started on reducing your “waste-line” and helping out the environment! Feel free to try anything else in the new year to get you started on a more environmentally friendly path!
Post your new resolutions on Instagram or Twitter and tag MASC!
Instagram: @md.stuco Twitter: @MDStuCo
Hello, student leaders of MASC! Global warming is the Earth’s overall rise in temperature over the years which affects so much of our daily lives and our futures. Due to this, sea levels have been rising. This could result in parts of Florida being underwater! This is only one detrimental consequence of global warming. However, there are so many more consequences that will especially affect younger generations. As student leaders that will ultimately live in a world impacted by global warming, we need to do our best to help reduce it as much as we can now.
Educate your friends and get them involved with trying to save our beautiful planet!
Instagram: @md.stuco Twitter: @MDStuCo
Hello, student leaders! This month we are going to discuss ways we can give thanks to our lovely environment. November is a month of giving thanks, so it’s the perfect time to give back to the Earth. There are so many little things that it gives us that we may just take for granted, such as the beautiful flowers that we see each day. To give thanks, let’s cut back on our environmentally harmful ways.
• Cut back on plastic baggies and plastic bottles! Using these plastics may seem very convenient, but reusable container/bottles are an easy alternative that will save you money in the long run. It takes plastic waste 450 to even 1000 years to decompose.
• Buy locally grown foods! With all the food you are going to be eating this Thanksgiving season, be sure that you do your best to obtain food that is grown in your area. Most of the food in America travels 1,500 miles to reach your dinner table! Packaging and shipping food contribute to increased levels of pollution.
• Plant Trees! Deforestation negatively impacts various habitats and ecosystems. This also affects climate change since there are fewer forests, and more greenhouse gases are in the atmosphere. For info on how to start a reforestation project check out this link https://www.pfla.bc.ca/forest-management-tips/from-planning-to-planting-reforestation-basics-for-forest-owners/
• Advocate for our planet! Get involved with an environmental movement. Zero Hour is a youth-led movement that advocates for climate change solutions. Simply go to this link to join http://thisiszerohour.org/
These are only a few ways that you can show your gratitude for the environment this month! Try to do something different each week to show your love for all the Earth has given us. If you have more ideas on how to show gratitude or if you’d like to show us how you’re completing this month’s goal, post on Instagram or Twitter and tag MASC!
Instagram: @md.stuco Twitter: @MDStuCo
Imagine a world in which no one cares about the environment. Trash and waste cover the streets. Thousands of species of beautiful plants and animals have gone extinct. Future children will only ever see a tiger in their dreams or in stories. People will have to wear masks to breathe the heavily polluted air. Trying to swim at the beach isn’t even considered a fun hobby anymore, not with all of the plastic blanketing the shore and filling the waters. Is this the world that we want to live in?
There is so much that can be done each and every day to avoid this nightmare. Being environmentally friendly does not have to be such a struggle. There are easy ways to help without going out of the way. It’s a spooky season, but let the terror come from the ghouls of the night, not from disregarding the environment.
• Throw bottle caps away!
Unless stated otherwise, bottle caps are typically non-recyclable, so be sure to leave them out!
• Learn the Resin Codes for Recycling!
The resin codes are important because they let you know if the plastic is recyclable since some plastics are not. Resin code 7 is not recyclable.
• Get out there and vote!
While many of us are below the legal voting age, you can still register to vote! You can also always encourage those in your life who can vote to do so. Voting on these environmental issues is a great way to make a difference.
There are so many organizations that have opportunities to volunteer to help the environment. This may include planting trees, cleaning up litter, educating young children about the environment, and so much more! As people who live on the earth, we all have an obligation to make sure that it’s as healthy as possible.
• Reduce your waste production!
Reduce is the first of the “three R’s” and is the most important. If there is less waste and pollution in the first place, then there is less to worry about. Do your best to use reusable items daily instead of single-use items that will simply end up in landfills. On average, Americans produce a staggering four pounds of waste per person per day. The smaller that number is, the better.
Instagram: @md.stuco Twitter: @MDStuCo
Hello, student leaders! Imagine a world without litter. Imagine a world where people work together each day to make the world a happier and healthier place. That world you’re imagining right now is the goal of the cleanup movement called Let’s Do It!. It all began ten years ago when thousands of citizens in Estonia came out to help make their country a cleaner place. This has spread globally and has led to another World Cleanup Day on September 15th of this year, and we wanted to honor that in this month’s green goal. Be part of the movement that embraces using cooperation to make the world a cleaner and healthier place.
To get involved…
Be sure to tag @md.stuco on Instagram or @MDStuCo on Twitter when you post you doing these goals.
Hello, fellow student leaders! August 18th is National Honeybee Day. These bees are dwindling at an alarming rate due to a variety of factors including pesticides, habitat loss, poor nutrition, and more. Cases of Colony Collapse Disorder have decreased in recent years but more still needs to be done to make sure that honeybees survive. Use the following goals as a starting and a guide in being proactive toward this issue. Bees are very important to our everyday lives from the pollination of plants that we depend on to the creation of the honey that makes our lives sweeter.
What to do from Home
Sponsor a hive! You can help increase the number of hives by sponsoring them. Check out https://thehoneybeeconservancy.org/sponsor-a-hive/ for more information on how to get started.
May Green Goals
Hello fellow student leaders! As the year wraps up, let’s reflect on some of the ways we can continue to be environmentally friendly throughout the summer. Let’s finish off strong with our last green goals of the year.
*Tweet or tag @mdstuco a picture when participating in Earth Day
April Green Goals
Happy April everyone! Earth Day is this month on April 22nd. People from all over the world have celebrated this day since 1970. Various events are held to show support for environmental protection. This month’s green goals will include activities to do on your own or with a few friends to benefit the environment. Go out and show your support for environmental protection.
*Tweet or tag @mdstuco a picture when participating in Earth Day
Happy March, student leaders of Maryland! The universal World Water Day is held this month, on March 22nd. The United Nations’ dedicated this day to increase people’s awareness of water’s importance in the environment, agriculture, health and trade. This day shines light on how crucial water is to our day to day lives and how privileged we are in the United States to have an abundant source of clean water. In tribute to countries around the world without a source of clean water, we dedicate this month’s green goals to water conservation.
Do not flush things down the toilet that can be easily thrown in the trash. Each flush is usually about 3.5 gallons – that can add up quickly!
Put a water bottle with a few pebbles in the tank of your toilet. This saves up to 10 gallons of toilet water a day.
When using a dishwasher, refrain from pre-rinsing. Scrap leftover and then put it in the dishwasher.
Instead of using the garbage disposal, make a compost with some of your food waste.
Wash your clothes in cold water. An added bonus- it saves money!
Only do laundry or dishes when you have a full load. We need to be as efficient as possible.
*Tweet or tag @mdstuco a picture when doing these
Welcome to February student leaders. The past few months we’ve focused on reusability and sustainability, but now it’s time to target reducing our ecological footprint as a whole. Little changes in our day to day lives can have an immense impact on restoring water and air quality. We’ve composed a five-step process to achieving an earth-friendly lifestyle!
Step 1 – Start the morning right with a hot cup of coffee or water. When doing so, ditch the plastic or paper cups. Invest in a coffee tumbler or reusable water bottle. This easy change in habit goes a long way in reducing waste.
Step 2 – Driving to school can be boring. Pick up a friend! Not only is it earth-friendly, you also have a friend to talk to on your way to school. Carpooling is the best way to reduce gas emission from transportation.
Step 3 – When you have arrived at school, you may notice that many of your classmates are not as awake as you. Encourage your classmates to take an ecological footprint calculator and research the ways they can reduce it.
Step 4 – After dinner, you may have dishes to wash. The average dishwasher uses 6 gallons per wash. It is imperative to run only full loads in your dishwasher or hand wash your dishes!
Step 5 – You’ve arrived at your home. It’s time to start winding down. Before hitting the bed, lower the thermostat. Bundle up to stay warm, and sleep well knowing that you’re making a difference in saving the world.
*Tweet or tag @mdstuco a picture when doing these
Hello fellow student leaders, we hope you all had a wonderful, relaxing Winter Break and New Year! With 2018 coming along, New Year’s resolutions are made. The New Year is a great way to say goodbye to your non-environmentally friendly habits; so let 2018 be full of a new environmentally friendly lifestyle.
Leave plastic water bottles in 2017, grab a reusable bottle which can save a lot of money and they are BPA free (BPA is a chemical used in plastic bottles which can be harmful to your health and the environment).
Use less water. Turn off the water while brushing your teeth and only use the dishwasher if it’s completely full of dishes.
Carpool to events, having multiple cars going to the same location gives off a lot of vehicle emissions that are very disastrous for the environment. (Especially for MASC events that are far away)
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Do not forget the three R’s; they are very important. There are multiple things you can do on a daily basis such as recycling paper or reusing containers.
New year, New you? Try upcycling, a cheap alternative to buying new clothes all the time. This is a great way to add something new to your style. Start 2018 with a new style.
Be green at your school. Join or start a green club at your school to make it a more environmentally friendly. Looks great on a resume, too.
Sell or donate used textbooks from the last semester. You never know who could need it.
*Tweet or tag @mdstuco a picture when doing one of these items!
Hello everyone! We hope you had a great Thanksgiving, but sadly we are now back to our busy school day lives. With that said, we all create a lot of waste in and out of school. One person makes 4.6 pounds of waste every day. Americans produce 251,000,000 pounds of waste a year. As student leaders, we all need to be cautious about our human footprint. Human footprints are the impacts of everyday activities towards the world (such as taking a shower or eating breakfast). These activities can either be positive or negative which is why we need to make sure that we pay attention to how our actions can affect the environment.
1. Make a compost basket – throw in soil, a few twigs, compostable materials, and keep it moist with water. Organic Farming!
2. Use Mason Jars or Reusable Containers instead of one time containers
3. Recycle your old electronic devices properly as incorrectly decomposed electronics emit radioactivity and carbon dioxide
4. Repurpose items in your home. Take an old bookcase, add some color, and now you’ve revamped your old boring case.
*Tweet or tag @mdstuco a picture when doing these!
Happy November fellow student leaders! November is the month of food. This month is Good Nutrition Month, American Diabetes Awareness Month, National Peanut Butter Lovers Month, and Thanksgiving. But throughout all our good eats, we need to be a little more cognizant in how the food we eat impacts the environment. And remember, eat well, but eat mindfully!
1. In the United States, bottled water costs between $0.25 and $2 per bottle while tap water costs less than a penny.
2. The manufacturing of plastic pollutes air, land and water, while exposing workers to toxic chemicals.
3. Plastic is NOT biodegradable and takes up to 1,000 years to decompose.
4. This month do not buy or use any plastic water bottle. Instead, buy a reusable water bottle. You may even start to love it so much you will never want to go back to plastic water bottles!
• Approximately 1.3 billion tons of food gets lost or wasted each year.
• Fruits, vegetables, roots, and tubers have the highest wastage rates of all foods.
• Shop realistically and be sure to check expiration dates.
• Make sure to eat those Thanksgiving dinner leftovers.
• Organic food production eliminates soil and water contamination, conserves biodiversity, fights against global warming, and reduces the use of pesticides and fertilizers.
• This month go to an organic food store in your area once a week to buy essential groceries. Although it may be costly, the cost of saving our planet is important!
*While doing these goals, post on social media and tag us @MDSTUCO
Hello fellow leaders! MASC hopes you all are enjoying the beginning of the school year. This month we will discuss the decline of the bee population. One out of three bites of food you eat daily is pollinated by bees. In other words, a third of all the food we produce depends on pollination! Bees and other pollinating insects play an essential role in ecosystems. However, since the late 1990s, the bee population has been in a high rate of decline. In fact, Maryland ranks as one of the highest rates of bee decline in the U.S. It is urgent that the student leaders of Maryland take a stand to help. Here are a few ways you can help, remember even the smallest actions can make a difference.
1) Plant different flowers and herbs for the bees to pollinate. Also, make sure that the plants are bee friendly.
2) Bees get thirsty after pollinating native plants so place a basin of water with a few pebbles inside of it to help them quench their thirst.
3) Do not weed your garden, the weeds are food for the bees.
4) Don’t use harmful pesticides to treat lawns.
5) Online forms of advocacy and change making! http://www.queenofthesun.com/get-involved/push-for-policy-change/ (MASC is not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of this outside website.)
Maryland is over 60%
Hello fellow student leaders, the school year has begun and we want to share with you all the ways we can be environmentally-friendly this school year. Please share these tips with peers to spread the word. As leaders, it is crucial to be eco-friendly in order to take care of our environment. Everyone makes mistakes and these are easy fixes to everyday recycling matters. Remember, little acts of recycling can have a huge impact. So let’s jump right into the Green Goals of the Month.
1. If possible take notes on an electronic device while in class to save paper.
2. Use a reusable water bottle.
3. Use a mug or insulated water bottle for drinks with preferred temperatures.
4. Use eco-friendly school supplies because many ingredients in common supplies are harmful to the environment such as PVC (made with dangerous chemicals) which are in common stationery items.
5. Pack a no garbage lunch, using Tupperware and other reusable utensils.
1. The caps on water bottles are not recyclable; please throw them in the trash.
2. Pizza boxes cannot be recycled because the grease contaminates the box. In most cases, you can recycle the top if not contaminated by grease.
3. Do not recycle Styrofoam in your recycling bin; find a drop site specifically for Styrofoam
4. Plastic bags must be clean, dry and empty before they are recycled.
5. Milk and Juice cartons are to be recycled.
Hello all! We hope everyone is as excited for convention as we are! Since there is so much going on this month with elections, convention, and preparing for AP tests, there is only one green goal of the month!
Earth Day celebration! April 22 is Earth Day! The best day of the year! Convince your science class to have a small class party celebrating our Earth! Get the students from your school to wear blue and green and take a huge class picture! In any way that you can, make sure people know about Earth Day.
In addition to this green goal, everyone is encouraged to be as eco-friendly as possible at the convention! Make sure all of your delegations are aware of the recycling bins placed throughout the hotel and remind them to turn the lights off in their rooms when they are not in use!
Have a great day and we will see you at the convention!
Hello everyone and Happy March! We hope everyone is enjoying the school year! March is the perfect month to begin saving our Earth so listen closely. The green goals we have previously given you this year may have seemed small, but hopefully they have been effective! Butttttttttt, we think it’s time to step it up with our March theme of Environmental Restoration.
Get together with some friends and go clean up a park, stream, sports complex, anything! There has to be a place in your community that comes to mind when you think of litter. Get some friends together, go out to lunch, and then go have a day of clean up! It can be a lot more fun than you think and you can talk to a teacher in your school about getting service learning hours for it!
Plant native trees in your area that you think could use some more green. Sometimes there are places that just need a little tree to brighten up the scenery. This is another activity that can be done with a group of friends and made into a super fun day!
Promote the use of waste bins in your community where litter is evident. Although cleaning up the park is a great first step, there’s no use in stopping there! Talk to the adult leaders in your area about setting up waste bins in the park or increasing the amount of them around the soccer fields/wherever it’s needed most.
These green goals require a little more of your time but the impact you can have on your community and the planet is huge. We know you guys can handle it. Someone could see you and your friends out restoring your community and be completely inspired to do the same thing! Remember to have fun with it and as always, send us pictures!
Hello all! We hope you are enjoying the snow and the snow days that come with it. What better way to spend a day off from school than making your life greener?! Yeah we can’t think of any. Well good news because the February Green Goals are here to help you out. The theme for February is……. RAISING AWARENESS!!! We know that all of you amazing people having been hearing about how to help the environment over the past few months, but what about the other people in your schools, families, and communities? Here’s a few ideas:
Put an announcement on the morning announcements that will promote green living to the students at your school. Make it catchy so it will grab students’ attention! There may be someone looking for an opportunity to help and just not sure where to go with their big ideas!
Teach an environmental workshop at your next general assembly. It doesn’t have to be long. Taking a few minutes to educate students on the environmental impact that they have on the world and give them a few tips of ways they can help (HINT: previous green goals work for great tips).
Read your local paper for a week and educate yourself about the environmental issues occurring in your local area. There may be something you can do in your area that will make an amazing difference and you could have no idea!
Start a green organization or eco-club at your school if there aren’t any already. It only takes a few people and an adult who is willing to supervise! Your small club could grow to be extremely influential in your school.
Thank you for giving us the last several minutes of your life to read this amazing email. REMEMBER: We want pictures of you participating! We hope you have fun participating and make your own lives a little bit greener!
Hello everyone and Happy New Year! We hope you all had a fantastic holiday season and are ready for a great year ahead! Looking for that perfect New Years Resolution? How about doing your part to save the Earth! And we have ideas on just how you can do it. The theme for the January Green Goals is Over-consumption and Waste. Sounds fascinating, we know. Here’s how you can help:
1. Pack a waste free lunch. Yeah it might be easy to pack a brown paper bag lunch and then just throw away all of the bags when you’re done but where does all that trash go? INTO THE EARTH! Taking a lunch box and using containers instead of bags is a great solution! It might be just a little bit more work but the effect it can have is enormous!
2. Plan your meals to ensure that you are not buying food that will end up going to waste. Also use reusable grocery bags when buying your items. It can be so easy to walk through the isles of the market and pick up a huge amount of appealing items that end up sitting in your pantry until they expire. Try planning out your meals for the week and only buying the amount of food you will need. Of course you can buy all of the cookies you want, but don’t buy a new box when there’s already one sitting in the back of the drawer. Also remember to use reusable grocery bags when shopping for your items!
3. Donate unwanted clothing, furniture, and other household items to a second hand store instead of forcing them to end up in a landfill. Cleaning out your closet or the pile of clutter in your attic is never a fun job, and it’s easy to just throw all of your unwanted items into the trash. DON’T DO IT. You don’t want all of that stuff to end up in the landfill especially when it could go towards helping a family in need.
As always feel free to send us pictures of you and your friends participating in the green goals! We hope that you have a great start to your year and a great time going green!
We hope you are all enjoying the holiday season and are ready for all that it brings. And what better gift to give than helping out the world! The theme for the December green goals is…… RECYCLING! Even though recycling is a common practice in many homes, it is important to keep this up through the holidays especially at big family dinners! Here’s a few things you can try if you feel you’re ready to take your recycling game to the next level.
1. If you are not already doing so in your home, start recycling bottles, cans, cardboard, and newspapers. If you recycle one or two of those, try taking on another! Large cardboard boxes that you may have laying around work as great bins to keep your recyclable items in! Don’t forget to recycle gift wrapping paper too!
2. Create a recycled art project. Need something to do on a snow day? Make a recycled art project that can be used as the centerpiece to your holiday dinner or a gift for your amazing mom. Pinterest is a great place for some creative ideas- just look up “art projects with recycled materials” and you’ll find a ton! Think outside of the box and make sure to send us pictures of your fabulous creations!
1. Take a “Navy Shower” During a “Navy Shower” you turn the water off to lather and then turn it back on to rinse off. You can also time your showers and set personal goals to cut down and reduce the amount of time the water is running.
2. Turn off water while brushing your teeth. Just like during a shower, you aren’t using the running water during the whole process that you brush your teeth. Leaving the water off while brushing and then turning it on at the end to rinse is a simple way to save!
3. Save the water that is wasted while waiting for the shower to heat up. This one is a little tricky and takes some commitment. Nobody likes getting in the shower until the water is the perfect temperature, but think of how much water is going straight down the drain while you wait! Gathering the water in tubs or containers will provide you with a stockpile of water that you can use for watering plants, tending to your garden, and other household uses.