50 Ways To Celebrate The 50th Anniversary of Earth Day

In honor of the half-century milestone of Earth Day, we’ve created a list of 50 things you can do to celebrate the planet.

  1. Kickstart your day with DIY coffee at home from a reusable mug.
  2. Save water by taking a shorter shower.
  3. Try plogging. You can get some exercise while also beautifying your neighborhood.
  4. If you’re not actively using water, turn off the faucet to save water. Water is a vital natural resource that should be conserved, and it also helps save money.
  5. Add more plant-based meals to your diet. By cutting back on meat based meals, you can decrease your carbon footprint and open up an entire range of new recipes to try.
  6. Prioritizing food grown locally helps cut down emissions related to freight emissions while also stimulating the local economy.
  7. Wash your clothes in cold water to cut down on energy use and emissions.
  8. Hanging out clothes to dry may seem an old fashion technique but it is time-tested and free. Cutting out the use of a clothes dryer saves a significant amount of energy.
  9. Replacing light bulbs in your home with LED lights may seem insignificant but they save on electricity, are more durable and last longer than conventional lights.
  10. Take any of the hazardous materials you’ve been storing at your house to your local waste sorting center for responsible disposal.
  11. When shopping avoid buying items that are packaged in a lot of plastic. Try to find items that are instead packaged in paper, cardboard or previously recycled material to cut back on the stream of plastics going into the environment.
  12. Grow your own food in your backyard or plant containers.
  13. Instead of going to the gym, take your exercise routine outdoors.
  14. Clean out your closet and donate or recycle items you don’t use.
  15. Cutting back on travel is pretty easy during isolation but you still need to go to the grocery store and pharmacies. Try walking or biking to the store, it helps cut down on car emissions and is a great time to get some exercise.
  16. Give back to a local charity.
  17. You can save money and reduce pollutants by mowing your lawn less this spring/summer.
  18. Reduce food waste by cleaning your plate.
  19. Hit the switch when you leave an empty room. Lighting accounts for 15% of energy use.
  20. Equip your car for the best fuel efficiency.
  21. Buying fewer new clothes every month can have a significant impact on reducing your carbon footprint.
  22. Instead of tossing food waste into the trash, try creating your own composting bins. Compost is an excellent fertilizer for home gardens. With planting season upon us you can cut back on the amount of fertilizer you have to buy while ensuring your gardens flourish.
  23. Toss the toxins from personal care or household products.
  24. Building a pollinator garden helps keep pollinators like bees healthy while also maintaining the health of the surrounding ecosystems.
  25. Fix plumbing leaks fast to save gallons.
  26. Pull the plug to prevent electronics from using energy when not in use.
  27. Use a reusable cup, bottle or mug to reduce use of single-use disposable items.
  28. Recycle to help make the world a cleaner, less wasteful place.
  29. Adjust computer display settings to save energy.
  30. Ride a bike. Enjoy this zero-emission way to travel.
  31. Studying at home? Print double-sided if you need to print out notes or other documents.
  32. Register for a sustainability-related course (or check out a sustainability-related degree program if you haven’t declared your major yet).
  33. Eat produce that’s in season.
  34. Buy in bulk to reduce packaging waste.
  35. Taste the difference that drinking water and eating fruits and vegetables can have on your body.
  36. Reduce your use of disposable shopping bags.
  37. Shop at farmer’s markets.
  38. Go through your mail and considering converting any bills to paperless payment.
  39. Decline the disposable plastic straw. Try a reusable or paper straw instead, or simply go without a straw.
  40. Install a low-flow shower head or sink aerator to reduce your water use.
  41. Cleaning out? Be sure to recycle any old computers or electronics. This keeps hazardous materials from the landfill. If a device still has usable life, consider donating it.
  42. Watch a sustainability-related documentary on your favorite streaming video service.
  43. Consolidate your online purchases into fewer shipments to reduce the amount of packaging, as well as an extra delivery to your home. Bonus: Add the UCapture plugin so that your purchases offset NC State’s carbon emissions.
  44. Adjust the time of day when you wash dishes or do laundry. Operating these appliances in off-peak hours could result in a smaller electricity bill.
  45. Get a house plant. They help clean your air and bring a little bit of the outdoors in.
  46. Let in natural light instead of using lamps or overhead lighting.
  47. Use a ceiling fan. It circulates air and makes a room feel cooler without using as much energy as your air conditioning system does.
  48. Have financial investments? Check out any socially responsible funds that your financial institution may offer.
  49. Reduce food waste and save time by cooking in bulk and freezing leftovers to enjoy at another time.
  50. Write down something you’re thankful for. Acknowledging the natural resources that Earth provides is a great way to celebrate Earth Day.