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Climate climate General

Zero Emissions Day - let’s try it together!

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by: Ariana M
zero emissions day   let s try it together

September 21st is Zero Emissions Day (ZeDay) – the global 24-hour moratorium on the use of fossil fuels. This movement was started to “give the planet one day off a year” and there are 4 simple guidelines:

  • Don’t use or burn oil, gas, or coal.
  • Minimize or eliminate use of electricity generated by fossil fuels.
  • Don’t put anyone in harm’s way: All essential and emergency services operate normally.
  • Do your best, have fun and enjoy the day

ZeDay can also be used as an opportunity to raise awareness of the amounts of fossil fuels that are used worldwide every single day. We are going to use this opportunity to share with you some interesting and lesser-known ways in which you could minimize your carbon footprint on the day itself and long-term.

What you can do today…

  • Leave your car and/or public transport pass at home and walk, bike or skate to work - whatever method of transportation you use, make sure that it doesn’t require any fuel or electricity. And who knows, perhaps you will discover exciting hidden gems somewhere you thought you knew so well!
  • Minimize your appliance use on ZeDay. Have a lovely candle-lit dinner, read a book, play a board game or two, practice drawing (like you were planning to do for the past 3 years) – get creative!
  • Plant a tree. Or maybe a bush, or some flowers, or a small herb garden on your balcony – the point is, add more plants! We all know that plants absorb carbon dioxide and transform it into oxygen, so this is a simple way to undo some of the damage that we have already done to the planet and make it at least a bit prettier.
  • Switch over to paper-less billing. Paper bills contribute to carbon emissions in several ways: trees get cut down (which reduces the amount of natural CO2 “converters”), then they are used to manufacture paper (a process that releases many harmful emissions) and then this paper goes in a big adventure full of emissions. Some of it gets transformed into envelopes, some of it gets sent to big warehouses, from where it travels to companies and governmental offices so that they can print it and send it to you. Most of the transport that is used in this process isn’t “green”, so it takes a lot of emissions for you to get a message. Luckily, in the modern age of Internet, many companies and governmental braches allow you to receive all correspondence from them online. Take 10 minutes of your day (yes, you are allow to circumvent the “minimize your appliance use” rule for this!) to make a change that will help you reduce your carbon footprint in the years to come.

… And what you can start doing tomorrow

  • Switch to more energy-efficient appliances. This is perhaps an advice that you will see most often, but it is one that can make a lot of difference. You could save a large portion of your energy bill by switching to LED light bulbs and high efficiency appliances.
  • Stop buying fast fashion. Fast fashion is problematic in more ways than one, and production of excessive amount of low quality clothing, transporting it from overseas and short life cycle of the items are just few ways in which this industry plays a big role in increasing carbon emissions. There are better alternatives out there: we have previously discussed the circular fashion movement and introduced you to different technologies that could become the future of sustainable clothing. Being sustainable is trendy!
  • Speaking of circular economy – next time you are looking for something for your house, stop by your nearest charity or thrift shop. There are many amazing items there that can still be used for decades to come; all it takes is some tender loving care. There are also a lot of unique items to be found, they truly don’t make them like they used to anymore.
  • Get some solar chargers to use for your phone, tablet and other small devices. These days there is a vast selection of external batteries, backpacks and even tents that are powered with solar energy. There are also solar-powered e-bikes, wireless keyboards, Bluetooth speakers and lights in case you want to take in one step further (or simply enjoy spending time in the sun).
  • Vote for greener energy. This is perhaps the most crucial tip of all – it is important for governments and companies to know that we care about where our energy comes from. Make sure to support green causes and if possible don’t purchase from companies that are against making our planet a better place.

What other ways do you know to reduce your carbon footprint? Share your tips in the comments!

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