Editorial: Take small steps to protect the environment

Published 9:53 pm Thursday, April 18, 2019

Monday is the 49th anniversary of Earth Day, a global event each year where people come together to demonstrate support for protecting the environment.

Whether you choose to take part in this effort that day or any other time, remember there are many things we can do — large and small — to make a difference in the environment.

• Get involved. If you’re not doing so already, start recycling or taking your own bags to the supermarket. We’re fortunate within our county to have a comprehensive recycling program.

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• Spend time in a natural environment. Visit a park or garden. Ride your bike. Take a walk. And if you see some unsightly garbage, why not pick it up? Or better yet, do your own little neighborhood cleanup.

• Buy a plant or start a garden. Plants help clean the air, are visual expressions of nature’s beauty and uplift the soul and spirit.

• Try composting. Composting kitchen and yard waste can reduce greenhouse gas emissions and provide a fertilizer for the garden.

• Think green and shop green: Vote for the environment with your consumer dollars and make wiser and healthier choices for you and your family by buying natural, environmentally friendly products: an organic version of one of your favorite food items, a natural cleaner or recycled paper products.

• Save energy at home. Choose energy-saving appliances when possible, turn off electronic devices not in use and replace 100-watt incandescent light bulbs with 25-watt compact fluorescent bulbs.

• Take part in the Albert Lea Lakes Foundation’s annual  Lake Cleanup Day slated for April 27. Volunteers are asked to meet at Frank Hall Park to receive supplies and then spread out to different areas of Freeborn County’s lakes, rivers and waterways to pick up trash that accumulated over the winter.  Groups will start leaving the park at 9 a.m., and bags and supplies can be picked up until 10:30 a.m.

We can all do our part to show our appreciation and love for the Earth — not just on Earth Day, but every day.