Things You Can Do About Climate Change

  • by XpatAthens
  • Tuesday, 21 September 2021
Things You Can Do About Climate Change
According to an overwhelming body of scientific evidence, climate change is real. It's happening right now, it's largely caused by human activities, and it will have many serious and potentially harmful consequences in the decades ahead, some of which are already evident.
And, while individuals alone may not be able to make drastic emissions cuts that limit climate change to acceptable levels, personal action is essential to raise the importance of issues to policymakers and businesses. Using your voice as a consumer, a customer, a member of the electorate, and an active citizen will lead to changes on a much grander scale.

1. Eat less meat & dairy 

Avoiding meat and dairy products is one of the biggest ways to reduce your environmental impact on the planet. Studies suggest that a high-fiber, plant-based diet is also better for your health - so it can be a win-win. Eat fewer or smaller portions of meat, especially red meat, which has the largest environmental impact, and reduce dairy products or switch them for non-dairy alternatives. Try to choose fresh, seasonal produce that is grown locally to help reduce the carbon emissions from transportation, preservation, and prolonged refrigeration.

2. Leave the car at home 

Instead of getting in the car, walk or cycle – and enjoy the physical and mental health benefits, and the money saved. For longer journeys, use public transport, or try car-sharing schemes. Not only do cars contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, but air pollution caused by exhaust fumes from traffic poses a serious threat to public health. It has been shown to affect the health of unborn babies and increase the risk of dementia.

3. Reduce your energy use & bills

Small changes to your behavior at home will help you use less energy, cutting your carbon footprint and your energy bills: Put on an extra layer and turn down the heating a degree or two. Turn off lights and appliances when you don’t need them and replace light bulbs with LEDs or other low-energy lights. Make simple changes to how you use hot water, like buying a water-efficient showerhead.

4. Respect and protect green spaces

Green spaces, such as parks and gardens, are important. They absorb carbon dioxide and are associated with lower levels of air pollution. They help to regulate temperature by cooling overheated urban areas, can reduce flood risk by absorbing surface rainwater, and can provide important habitats for a wide variety of insects, animals, birds, and amphibians. They also provide multiple benefits to public health, with studies linking green space to reduced levels of stress.

5. Cut consumption & waste

Everything we use as consumers has a carbon footprint. Avoid single-use items and fast fashion, and try not to buy more than you need. Shop around for second-hand or quality items that last a long time. Put your purchasing power to good use by choosing brands that align with your new green aspirations.

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