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Dr. Seuss is one of my favorite authors. I know, I know. Of all the authors, this English teacher’s favorite is Theodore Seuss Geisel, an American artist and children’s author known for greats like Green Eggs and Ham, The Cat in the Hat, and (of course) How the Grinch Stole Christmas. His texts are not merely filled with imaginative characters and silly rhymes, but instead are allegories that explore highly political and social issues. His subversive works challenge readers to think critically about racial and religious equality, materialism, and environmentalism and, in some ways, even empowers readers to affect change. The 1971 classic, The Lorax, is one of those stories that does just that!
If you’re unfamiliar with the tale, let me set the scene: a greedy man cuts down trees and, after being warned of the ramifications of doing so, starts a factory that ultimately endangers the trees and all its residents. In other words, it’s a pretty sad yet fascinating tale that chronicles the plight of the environment. Though fictional, doesn’t this sound uncannily familiar? It should! Logging, pollution, and climate change are just a few of the environmental issues and effects currently at the forefront of the news, and if things don’t change, well…let’s just say things need to change. Like the Lorax said, “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” Do you care enough to make a difference that will not only positively impact your life, but the lives of others? A difference that could save and improve Mother Earth? I know that sounds like a tall order and a huge responsibility, so here are four small changes you can make today for a better tomorrow:
Tip #1: Avoid littering! Fewer things grind my gears than seeing someone throw trash out of their car while driving or on the street or beach while walking. Save your trash for the can! If you see trash, pick it up. If you see the offender, call that person out! Bonus: Recycle!!!
Tip #2: Reduce water use! Increase the amount of useable water by limiting your showers to 5 minutes and turning the water off while brushing your teeth. Bonus: Use cold water when washing clothes.
Tip #3: Unplug! How many times have you left the lights on or devices plugged in at your house or apartment when you’re a) not there or b) not even using them? DON’T! You’re still using that energy, even when you’re not, well, using it. Bonus: Unplugging will also save you some serious cash!
Tip #4: Shop smarter! Buy what you need, not what you want. If possible, buy local, in-season foods and natural, non-toxic products. Bonus: Reduce food waste by being more selective! Make a grocery list before going grocery shopping and be sure to eat what’s on your plate before getting seconds.
Want to make a pledge and participate in the first annual Kermit Says… Earth Day Challenge? Take a selfie with the #KermitSaysEarthDay and share your resolution on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. What will you do for the rest of the year to make an environmental difference? Photos will be posted on the Kermit Says… Instagram page @kermitsays1, so be sure to follow!
Have some favorite Earth Day tips and tricks to make Earth Day every day? Comment below!