It’s the new year and I’m still the same. I have made a few personal resolutions for 2019 – like actually sticking to a workout regime – but I decided to make a separate list of environmental goals for the year. As an environmentalist, I thought that I should “walk the talk” in 2019. I need to do more than just blog about environmentalism and making lifestyle changes (like recycling and using cruelty-free products).
This year I want to make a bigger impact as an environmentalist. I have come up with five environmental goals for 2019. Five seems like a small number but each goal will actually help reduce my carbon footprint drastically.
Reduce Plastic Waste
I began to reduce my plastic waste in 2018 by cutting out four major plastic culprits: plastic bags, straws, bottles and takeaway coffee cups. Since then I have been paying attention to what does/doesn’t contain plastic. From makeup to basic stationery, almost everything has plastic in it. My goal for 2019 is to reduce plastic waste. Before I buy anything I will consider how it can be reused or recycled. If it contains too much plastic, I will look for a greener alternative.
This has been a goal of mine since I was 13. I have tried and failed many times to give up meat and dairy. This time, however, I feel like I have done enough research to go completely vegan. I have slowly been phasing out meat in my diet over the past few months, and I’m currently an ovo-vegetarian (I still eat eggs). I already use animal friendly products, so why should I not have an animal friendly diet?
Build an Ethical Closet
After learning about the fast fashion industry (the second biggest contributor to Climate Change) I decided to stop supporting fast fashion labels. I have not bought a clothing item since September 2018. It has been the best decision I’ve made for myself and the environment. I will continue my fast until the end of summer. I might buy a few clothing items from ethical brands once the fast is done. I won’t splurge – I just want to buy a few items to start building my ethical closet.
This goal is similar to my first and third goal. I want to spend less money on things and food. I want to reuse, up-cycle or finish something before buying more. I want to resist the urge to buy a new lipstick when I have ten at home. This might seem less of an environmental goal but it actually is one because consumerism plays a huge part in Climate Change. Buying less will reduce clutter and I will save more money. When I do buy something, I will make sure that it is eco – friendly and something worth investing in.
Do Volunteer Work
It’s one thing to sit behind my computer and tell others to make a change. It’s completely different if I actually go out and get my hands dirty (literally, in some cases). I want to be more involved in taking care of the environment, whether I volunteer at an animal shelter, do conservation work or participate in a beach clean-up. I’ve sat back for too long now. I know that I need to leave my comfort zone in order to make a difference.
What are your goals for 2019?
– Kayla Shivana