Over the past few months, I have been trying to be a little more “green” in my daily life by reducing waste and saving resources when I can. However, the coronavirus and subsequent quarantine has put a little hiccup in my journey. While there are a few things I have been doing to try and cut down on waste, the effort has taken a back seat to keeping things sanitary at this time.
Some of the things I have been doing to stay green in quarantine are:
- Using kitchen rags to sanitize surfaces instead of paper towels. After use I throw them in the wash on high temperature and they are ready to use again!
- If it is a nice sunny day, I work from home with the lights off and the blinds open! This saves some energy and saves some money on the electricity bill.
- Turning off my heat! We have had some really nice weather here in St. Louis and have only had to turn on the heat every once and a while. This is another good way to save some money as well!
- Making my own meals. Since you’re most likely home anyways, this is the perfect time to get chef-y and cook rather than buying pre-packaged meals. This will save on packaging waste, and possibly food waste as well!
While these may seem like small changes, they can make pretty substantial changes over time.
Staying home during this quarantine has also brought some unexpected climate recovery to the Earth.
Some wild animals are enjoying their break from us humans:
- Leatherback sea turtles are laying record numbers of eggs on beaches in Thailand.
- Lions in South Africa are enjoying sunbathing in roads that are normally used by safaris.
- Bears and coyotes are coming out of the woods to explore new areas in Yosemite National Park.
There are also some major breaks in world pollution:
- Air quality in Southern California is better than ever due to the decrease in commuters.
- Because many flights are being cancelled, emissions from flights have decreased significantly.
- Nitrogen dioxide pollution is down worldwide, with a 20% decrease over some countries, and up to 40% decrease over others.
So, while we are stuck inside and possibly feeling a little hopeless, we have some worldwide victories to celebrate. Hopefully, this is a little bit of good news during this time and I hope that everybody is staying happy, healthy, and safe!