8 Ways to Green Your Earth Day

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When Earth Day 2009 occurs this April, there will be lots of reasons to celebrate: A new environmentally focused administration, more awareness than ever about the importance of individual and corporate stewardship for the health of the planet and the promise of aggressive measures to curb climate change.

No matter how you decide to enjoy this year’s Earth Day festivities, there are actions big and small to suit your level of commitment. Here are some of the easiest ways to green this year’s Earth Day celebrations:

1. Be An Armchair Activist

Earth Day is the perfect day to join such causes as The We Campaign and Stop Global Warming Now. The Earth Day Network’s Climate Change Solutions Campaign site has an entire section devoted to taking action from your home, such as signing petitions, reading important articles and watching informative (and amusing) video spots.

2. Tell Everyone About It

As the green movement enters the mainstream, more and more people are getting involved in the rapidly growing range of Earth Day activities. Recruit your friends to join you in a local park cleanup or to attend a forum with local politicians.

3. Carpool ‘Cause You Can

Most Earth Day events are bastions of eco-responsibility, but you can start celebrating before you even get there by walking or biking, taking public transportation or carpooling. If you do drive, make sure you are behind the wheel of a well-tuned, fuel-efficient vehicle and that you have plenty of passengers.

4. Pack It In (and Out)

Many Earth Day events are held outside, so generating some trash is unavoidable. Be sure to compost, recycle and bring reusable containers during the festivities. Bring your commitment home with you and keep up your own recycling and composting.

Planting trees is an Earth Day tradition - get in on the action! Photo: plant-a-tree-today.org

Planting trees is an Earth Day tradition - get in on the action! Photo: plant-a-tree-today.org

5. Volunteer

One of the main goals of Earth Day is to educate the public about the easy actions that can help take care of the planet. Visit the Earth911.com Earth Day Channel to find events near you, and then offer to lend a hand on the big day.

6. Take it Home With You

Many Earth Day events offer advice and products for leading a greener, lower impact life style. If you attend, you also have the opportunity to learn from those who are volunteering with you. What do they do to reduce their impact? By talking with peers, you might learn some easy tips that specifically apply to your local area.

7. Drink (and Eat) Responsibly

“Environmentally responsibly,” that is. Given that the average meal travels 1,500 miles from farm to plate, Earth Day celebrations are the perfect places to eat and drink locally. Try to patronize some the local vendors where possible, bring your own food and beverage for a picnic and keep the idea of supporting local commerce in mind even after Earth Day has come and gone.

8. Plant the Seeds (or Saplings) of Change

What better and more lasting way to support Mother Earth than by planting a tree or garden in her honor? April is a great time for either, and if you need help finding a suitable location, the Earth Day Network provides a way to search for planting events around the country. A well-placed pine sapling is the perfect gift for future generations, and you can breathe easier knowing that you’ve made some of that fresh air possible.

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