Happy Earth Day!
Happy Earth Day! (What is Earth Day?) And we are reminded that we have to work towards a healthy and stable eco-system. Lots of us (me included before) do not make changes that can eventually help the environment, often because we think some little changes will not make a big change, the changes will make them uncomfortable or lower their quality of life. Today, I want to be reminded that one habit at a time can make a difference. Here are my six little habits:
1) Buy local!
Instead going to SM or NCCC mall, my parents and I have turned to buying from the local tinderas and markets like (Bankerohan market or Agdao market), which allow us not only to buy locally grown but organic produced goods, which are better for the economy (way cheaper also), environment, and for you and your family. I do not say that I am thinner of looking younger because of this move, but I do say that I feel more on the top of my food choices thru a wiser meal planning.
2) Regrow your food!
I first came across ‘regrowing food‘ on Pinterest, where I saw new leaves spring from the leftovers of an old lettuce. Turns out the inedible ends of vegetables prove to be fertile breeding grounds. Due to the tropical weather in Davao, of course, not all plants find the conditions to regrow. However, in our Green Davao garden we have been regrowing since November 2015: tomatoes, garlic, onion, calamansy, ginger, lemon grass, banana, papaya, lemons, green tea plant, aragula; and different culinary herbs like basil, mint, thymes, chives, parsely, oregano, dill and rosemary. We are planting the conventional way and also the vertical gardening (like how we did here). We are also looking into the art of hydroponics (soon, hopefully). Bottom line, it is such a awesome feeling knowing that food can grow from your own hands! So, do not throw away food scraps… regrow them!
Seriously, start composting! Each household generates so much food waste. Gather them! We digged up a hole and put a wire around it (read here more about it). Regularly, we throw coffee grounds, banana peels, egg shells, grass trimming and clippings and other useful kitchen leftovers in it and leave it (I listed here a few do’s and dont’s of right compostings). The combination of oxygen, water and sun and the help of a few little friends in the garden, enable the food waste to be broken down into its components, which is called then compost. Use your compost to boost growth and health of your plants (now convinced to regrow the inedible ends of vegetables?) and flowers.
4) Buy and grow plants!
Buy plants. You know why – it is selfexplanatory. Plants produce oxygen from CO2, which man and nature needs to survive. Additionally, they look pretty and make each home cozy. Here in Davao City, we are blessed with an abundance in plants, flowers and trees. For instance, I love to buy plants at Abreeza Mall upstairs on the roof deck, because they sell affordable herbs for our garden (read here how to find the stalls). In Arakan, I love buying strawberry plants and flowers for the Green Davao garden (check here how little we paid!). And psychologically, the color green is good for our mind as it has been proven to be calming down stress, giving harmony and balance. Yes, get outside and plant something. It will make you feel good and gives you some sort of peace within, which I cannot explain in words, but you will figure out once you have crossed the line. Promise!
5) Use re-usable tote bags!
When shopping in malls or any other stall, the bought goods are placed into a celophane (yes, plastic again) with the result that we are accumulating more and more tons of trash. Other countries like Germany are a great example: Shoppers bring their own bag inwhere the bought goods are placed. The bags often cost as little as 99cents (or less) and are made of wool and are therefore washable and re-usable. I am happy because SM Malls have been following this advocacy by introducing their own re-usable tote bags. And if you bring those tote bags on a Wednesday for your grocery, you get extra points on your rewards card.
6) Try to enjoy the frequent brownouts!
The last weeks of April, we have been hunted by the frequent brownouts in Davao City. I read too many angry comments on FB and other social media sites how annoying and inconvenient these rotational electricity losses are. But think it over, we got to have many Earth Hours!
“Earth Hour is a worldwide grassroots movement uniting people to protect the planet, and is organised by WWF. Engaging a massive mainstream community on a broad range of environmental issues, Earth Hour was famously started as a lights-off event in Sydney, Australia in 2007. Since then it has grown to engage more than 7000 cities and towns worldwide, and the one-hour event continues to remain the key driver of the now larger movement.” (Earthhour.org)
Earth Hour last for one hour. Our rotational brownouts last often 2-6 hours in Davao City! All is off: internet, TV, radio or computer. So change your attitude towards it, see it as a chance to rekindle personal relationships and your support for nature.
My six little habits have been making a difference to me. But eventually buying and growing local, reducing and recycling trash, re-using things starting at our homes will make a bigger impact on our environment. Remember, one habit at a time can make a difference sooner or later. Happy Earth Day everyday.
I hope you enjoyed reading! Let me know how you regard Earth Day and your ways of making greener choices! Please comment below.