How to help the planet beyond Earth Day 2022: 5 actionable ways you can make a difference

Simple tips to make sure every day is Earth Day

By Fiona Evans
Friday, 22nd April 2022, 6:41 pm
Simple steps can help to make a difference to the planet that last beyond Earth Day (photo: Adobe)
Simple steps can help to make a difference to the planet that last beyond Earth Day (photo: Adobe)

Helping the planet may seem like a Herculean effort but it is not beyond our reach.

And if the support for Earth Day (April 22) is a measure of commitment to the task at hand, then momentum appears to be strong.

EARTHDAY.ORG says its mission is to diversify, educate and activate the environmental movement worldwide.

It claims to be the world’s largest recruiter to the environmental movement, working with more than 150,000 partners in almost 192 countries to build environmental democracy.

This year Tom Cosgrove from Earth Day has collaborated with Mart Drake-Knight, co-founder of UK company, Teemill, to share the top five actionable ways you can make a difference not only on the day, but all year round.

Here's how to support this year's theme of ‘invest in our planet’:

1 Calculate your plastic pollution

We may have become more mindful when it comes to our use of plastic and ensuring that we reduce, reuse and recycle where possible, but do you know where you really stand when it comes to your use of plastic?

If you want a look at your yearly usage of plastic, take Earth Day’s plastic pollution calculator (https://www.earthday.org/plastic-pollution-calculator-2/) and find out how you can make small changes to ultimately end plastic pollution.

2 Invest in trees

In line with investing in our planet, the second thing you should consider is investing in trees. It can be difficult to feel as though we’re making a change across the globe but through The Canopy Project, Earth Day has planted tens of millions of trees with donations.

You can see where trees are being planted on its reforestation map (https://www.earthday.org/campaign/the-canopy-project/) and find out how you can donate. Funds raised through donations can help to reforest areas in need of rehabilitation to strengthen and support local communities as well as our planet.

3 Rethink your fashion

It’s time to consider what you’re putting in your wardrobe.

This year, Earth Day organisers have partnered with UK company, Teemill, to create a range of sustainable, circular fashion t-shirts, with profits supporting the movement.

“Most fashion products are made on a conveyor belt of mass production for mass consumption that leads to massive amounts of waste," said Mart Drake-Knight, co-founder of Teemill.

"If pollution isn’t costed in there's no consequences, and so consumers today get only one choice; linear consumption and waste. For real change, we need to change that model and operate with a circular process.

“In a circular process products are designed from the start to come back and be remade. That means materials flow back to the maker and the new product is remade from the old product. It is different to recycling, or upcycling, where material is turned into something different before it is then thrown away.

“Forty percent of all production in the fashion industry is never even utilised as it’s produced speculatively. The solution is simple: we need to produce what people need, when they need it. Changing the design at mass production scale eliminates massive amounts of waste.”

4 Check out your ‘foodprint’

Choose your food wisely. It’s calculators at the ready again as by using a handy ‘foodprint’ calculator (https://www.earthday.org/foodprints-calculators/) you can find out how to invest in more sustainable food options, whether that be by using more organic ingredients or considering plant-based alternatives.

Food production is responsible for a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions, with consumption of meat and dairy products in the West primarily fuelling global warming, so it’s never been more timely to think about what’s in your fridge.

5 Become a citizen scientist

Looking for ways to use your free time to make a change? To advance environmental research you can become a citizen scientist and report on environmental concerns such as plastics, air quality, insects, climate, food security and water quality in your local area to help promote better environmental policies as part of the Global Earth Challenge.

For example, to better understand plastic pollution, you can help to identify sources of pollution near you and the areas most affected by it.

For five simple ways to cut e-waste, visit: