Saturday, January 28, 2017

Green Resolutions

The New Year initiates a time of contemplation on the year ahead, a time where we decide how this year is going to be different, and how we are going to commit to affecting positive change. This year, the BSOS Sustainability Task Force proposes your New Year Resolutions include environmental conscientious goals. It’s okay if you’re starting these with the new semester rather than on January 1st -- there are still 11 months to make your actions count in 2017.  Participating in environmentally aware actions is especially important now, and even small steps can make positive change for you, your community, and the world. Here are five green resolutions we can pledge to make this year:

1. Keep reusable bags in your car: Plastic bags in abundance are detrimental to the environment; the U.S averages about 100 billion bags per year. Reusable bags are a simple, and even cheaper alternative to plastic bags. In many states and stores, plastic bags are taxed. Save money and help the planet by carrying reusable bags when you shop.

2. Meatless mondays: Try eating less meat; even dedicating just one day without meat can make a positive impact. The livestock sector accounts for 15% of greenhouse gases, and consequently many people are trading in meat for delicious and healthy alternatives.

3. Rethink your transportation, Transportation has a huge impact on the environment, and is one of the largest contributors of greenhouse gases. Moving away from private vehicle use and taking advantage of public transportation, biking, and carpooling can alse save you a considerable amount of money.

4. Commit to less energy use in your home: Make signs as reminders to turn of all the lights and unplug all electronics when not in use. Rethinking the way we use electricity is crucial for tangible environmental impact, and you will most likely also see a drop in your energy bill.

5. Join the BSOS Sustainability Task Force: The Task Force works on sustainability projects affecting the UMD community, and is always seeking new members and volunteers. No matter how much time you're able to commit, participating in environmental discussion and actions is greatly appreciated and encouraged within the UMD community.

Image result for sustainable umd logo
Interested in learning more about how terps are acting sustainably and what sorts of projects are going on campus-wide at UMD?  Check out the University's Office of Sustainability!

Author: Grace Donohue