Small Choices, Big Changes
by Monica Dewart
(Broken Arrow, OK, USA)
Something as Simple as Planting a Tree Can Make a Big Difference
While one individual can only do so much, in combination with many others, these small choices could result in big changes.
Adopting a vegan diet is perhaps the big game changer. By eliminating all foods from an animal origin, we eliminate the toxic waste produced by factory farms.
We eliminate the methane emissions produced by billions of animals currently maintained as "food." We eliminate the transportation emissions incurred from shipping feed to factory, animals to slaughterhouse, slaughterhouse to wholesaler, to retailer, etc.
In short, we eliminate the number one stressor on our environment.
Adopting as close to a plastic-free lifestyle as possible would be another huge game changer, because plastics are produced from fossil fuels.
Substituting cloth bags for plastic when grocery shopping, glass jars for food storage, shopping from bulk bins whenever possible, all reduce plastic stress on the environment. I've even substituted bamboo toothbrushes and straws in my home. Every little bit helps.
Growing an Organic Garden
The third personal choice I've made is to grow as extensive an organic vegetable garden as I can in my suburban backyard. In fact, as soon as possible, we plan to buy acreage so that we can grow as much of our own food as possible.
Not only will we be eating healthier, but talk about eliminating packaging and transportation costs!
Getting off the Grid
The fourth sweeping change is getting off grid. The possibility of going off grid is our big lure to getting out of suburbia, where homeowner bylaws can sabotage our efforts.
Capture your own rainwater and use it in the garden. Install solar arrays or wind turbines. Nothing spares natural resources like using the infinitely renewable elements of wind, sun, and rain.
Plant trees! Plant as many trees as you humanly, possibly can! Cutting down all our trees was the tipping point at the beginning, and it can be the tipping point, back into balance, at the end.
Even a suburban backyard can support more trees than you think. You can even choose those with a food benefit for the double whammy effect.
Riding a Bicycle
Ride a bicycle! It's easy. It's fun! It's great exercise. Many errands you run are close to home, anyway, so you may as well save the carbon emissions during the bulk of the back-and-forth you do.
These seemingly small, seemingly simple changes are all things I have adopted within the past 5 years. And while they may seem insignificant, if everyone were to do them collectively, we would completely change the world.