101+ Earth Day Tips for 2019

earth day 2019
Photo by Wolfgang Hasselmann

If you are looking for Earth Day tips for 2019, you’re in the right place. While you’re here, test your Earth IQ with our Earth Day quiz. We’ve also created an Amazon Alexa app that will give you tips about how you can help the Earth in significant ways.

What is Earth Day?

Earth Day is a day of observation that was started in 1970 as a way of pointing out the lack of accountability people had for their abuses of the environment. It was a direct response to the increase in the number of cars on the road and the rising level of pollution. It is held April 22 every year, no matter what day of the week that happens to fall on.

“In nature, nothing exists alone.”
— Rachel Carson, 1962

United States Senator Gaylord Nelson founded Earth Day. His objective was to force the American government to more actively address environmental issues. The 22 million participants in that first Earth Day helped the Senator to make his point. The success of that first Earth Day lead to the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Each year, Earth Day organizers choose a theme to focus on which makes it easier for people to get involved. In 2018, the focus of Earth Day was on the rising amount of plastic waste being dumped into the oceans. The goal was to encourage you to recycle that plastic water bottle instead of throwing it in the garbage.

Earth Day Focus for 2019: Protect our Species

giraffe protect our species
Photo by Anthony Melone

The focus of Earth Day 2019 is protecting our species: bees, coral reefs, elephants, giraffes, insects, whales and more. The aim is to educate people about the extinction of millions of species and the causes and effects of it. The 2019 campaign also wants to achieve policy goals to protect large groups of species as well as individual species and their habitats. This can be achieved by building a global movement that nurtures nature. Through encouraging individual actions like moving towards a plant based diet and limiting pesticide and herbicide use, we can achieve this goal.

What You Can Do On Earth Day?

Over one billion people around the world celebrate Earth Day and do their part to help bring attention to the planet’s environmental problems. You do not need to go out of your way to do your part for Earth Day, nor do you have to leave your home. Every year, this day makes more people aware of just how important it is to pay close attention to how humans treat the environment.

Watch the following video to understand why Earth Day is so important and the challenges the planet faces. These are problems we, the human race, has created and they are problems we must solve.

Earth Day is filled with large gatherings and celebrations all over the world, but it is also a day where every individual can make a difference. Something as simple as making sure the air pressure in your tires is correct to cut down on fuel consumption or remembering to turn off a light when you leave a room can make a difference. Read our Earth Day tips for 100+ more ideas.


Earth Day Quiz: Carbon Footprint

Test your knowledge of ways to conserve the Earth’s resources:

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Which food has the largest carbon footprint?

Alexandr Podvalny
Correct! Wrong!

The environmental impact of meat production is much higher than the footprint for growing vegetables, fruit and grains. Meat has a high demand of water, fossil fuel and land consumption. It has also a negative impact on aquatic ecosystems and has a high rate of greenhouse gas emission. For example the amount of CO2 produced by one kilo of lamb is 39.2, chicken 6.9, rice 2.7, vegetables 2.0, fruit 1.1 and lentils 0.9.

What transportation method has the smallest carbon footprint?

Joshua Niedermayer
Correct! Wrong!

In general planes have the most environmental impact, but driving alone over a long distance in a big car could be as bad as traveling by air. Traveling with three people in a car could have a very low impact as low as by train. The least impact and the most beneficial for your health riding your bike.

What is the most eco-friendly way to wash dishes?

Adam Wilson
Correct! Wrong!

It may feel ‘greener’ to do the dishes by hand, but it's actually more wasteful. You use up to 27 gallons of water per load by hand versus as little as 3 gallons with an ENERGY STAR-rated dishwasher. Just scrape off the food scraps instead of rinsing each dish before you load it.

What reduces your carbon footprint the most?

Moja Msanii
Correct! Wrong!

While several of these actions are a great idea, replacing inefficient incandescent light bulbs with efficient CFLs or LEDs lowers your carbon footprint by 450 lbs a year, recycling paper, plastic and glass with 1200 lbs, eating vegan with 1800 lbs and move your heater thermostat down two degrees in winter and up two degrees in the summer with 2,000 lbs.

What heating system has the smallest carbon footprint?

Tim Bish
Correct! Wrong!

Heat pumps, in combination with a power grid that is 100% powered with renewable energy may one day provide a 100% free CO2 emission system.

Which light bulbs are the least efficient?

Johannes Plenio
Correct! Wrong!

Both CFL light bulbs and LED light bulbs offer enormous energy savings. LED bulbs offer the most savings overall using less energy and lasting longer at 60,000 hours, however a greater initial investment is required.

Which action doesn’t save on your car's carbon footprint?

Tom Arrowsmith
Correct! Wrong!

Keep your tires properly inflated and get better gas mileage. Reduce your carbon footprint 20 pounds for each gallon of gas saved. Save gas by driving sensibly (aggressive driving lowers gas mileage by 33%) and maintain a steady speed via cruise control.

What won’t save water?

Seth Doyle
Correct! Wrong!

A full bath can take up to 70 gallons to fill, while a 5-minute shower uses just 10-25 gallons.

Which of the following actions doesn’t save energy?

Victoria Bilsborough
Correct! Wrong!

Don't stream videos through your game console - Video game consoles such as the Xbox and PlayStation can suck 25 to 50 times more power to stream a movie from the Internet compared to a dedicated device such as Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, or a Google Chromecast stick.

What doesn’t lower your carbon footprint while staying in a hotel?

Bill Anastas
Correct! Wrong!

Avoid using the hotel laundry, as they typically wash each guest’s clothes separately, even if there are only a few items.

Carbon Footprint Quiz
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The overall purpose of Earth Day is to improve the environment. This is an activity where everyone can participate. Read the following tips for over 100 specific actions you can take to help the Earth:

100+ Earth Day Tips for 2019

Use the following buttons to focus the list on topics that you find interesting.

  1. Conserve water outdoors by only watering your lawn in the early morning or late at night.
  2. Use drought-resistant plants in dry areas.
  3. Be practical about landscaping. Consider using the natural landscaping of your region instead of a lawn.
  4. Create an edible garden to offset your water usage.
  5. Compost kitchen scraps and plant debris for use in your garden.
  6. Plant trees.
  7. Join a local park, river or beach cleanup.
  8. Remove invasive plants and replace them with native plants.
  9. Create a simple DIY rainwater harvesting system.
  10. Use recycled containers such as yogurt cups and egg cartons for starting seeds.
  11. Used coffee grounds and dried, crushed up eggshells for fertilizer.
  12. Provide water, whether via natural springs, birdbaths or ponds to attract birds and other wildlife
  13. Encourage birds to be your pest control for ants, spiders, and other insects.
  14. Instead of pesticides, sprinkle the lawn with cayenne.
  15. Grow your own organic garden, or join a farm share group.
  16. Fill an empty city lot with a garden.
  17. Protect pollinators by choosing a variety of native plants.
  18. Protect birds strikes into windows by hanging objects to reduce the reflection.
  19. After mowing your lawn, sprinkle grass clippings over it for a natural fertilizer.
  20. Group errands together and buy in bulk to reduce how many shopping trips you make.
  21. Use public transportation or ride sharing.
  22. Use teleconferencing instead of traveling for meetings.
  23. Move to a walkable neighborhood or small town
  24. Keep your automobile tires properly inflated to improve fuel economy.
  25. Drive an electric or hybrid car
  26. Save gas by driving sensibly (aggressive driving lowers gas mileage by 33%).
  27. Maintain a steady speed using cruise control
  28. Remove any excess weight (an extra 100 pounds in your trunk reduces your fuel economy by 2%)
  29. If you’re idling for more than a minute, turn off the car until you’re ready to move again.
  30. Don’t warm your car before driving on cold mornings. Use a jacket to stay warm and a scraper or pitcher of warm water to defrost the windows
  31. Take back roads instead of sitting in traffic to reduce air pollution
  32. Suggest that schools adopt a “no idling” policy for buses and cars
  33. Change your car’s air filter regularly
  34. Dress appropriately to reduce energy consumed for heating and cooling.
  35. Avoid using bottled water and drink tap water or filter it yourself.
  36. Stop using disposable plastics, especially single-use plastics like bottles, bags, and straws.
  37. Bring your own reusable bags and skip the paper and the plastic at your grocery store.
  38. Only buy the groceries you need and reduce food waste.
  39. Recycle paper, plastic, and glass.
  40. Donate your old clothes and home goods. Consider buying previously used items.
  41. Change your paper bills to online billing.
  42. Read documents online instead of printing them. Go paperless as much as possible.
  43. When you use paper, make sure it is 100% post-consumer recycled paper.
  44. If possible, set your printer to print two-sided.
  45. Recycle used printer, fax, and copier cartridges.
  46. Suggest that local schools and offices choose reusable utensils, trays, and dishes in the cafeteria.
  47. Use reusable water bottle or mug at the office, school or coffee shop.
  48. Pack your lunch in reusable bags or boxes.
  49. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. It’s good exercise too!
  50. Form or join a “green team” at work or in your community to find cost-effective ways to conserve resources and promote sustainability.
  51. Opt-out of any paper catalogs or subscriptions you don’t read or could read electronically.
  52. Use a cover on pots while cooking. You can reduce energy use by up to two thirds and heat food faster.
  53. Simultaneously preparing more than one food in the same pot saves both time and energy.
  54. Save energy and waste by using rechargeable batteries.
  55. Pick-up trash while you walk or run.
  56. Dispose of your electronics wisely.
  57. Say no to junk mail.
  58. Use matches instead of disposable lighters.
  59. Switch from disposable pads and tampons to this reusable solution like a Diva-Cup.
  60. Send packages with UPS’ carbon-neutral-shipping option.
  61. Use a toothbrush with a bamboo handle instead of a plastic one.
  62. Don’t flush old medication. Find a drop-off site at disposemymeds.org.
  63. Reuse old phone book pages or newspapers as packing material or garden mulch.
  64. Use aluminum foil instead of plastic wrap. Foil can be recycled.
  65. A DIY shower shutoff valve will allow you to turn off the water while you soap up without having to re-adjust the water temperature.
  66. Buy local food to reduce the distance from farm to fork.
  67. Buy straight from the farm or join a local food coop.
  68. Look for organic food. Keep your body and the environment free of toxic pesticides.
  69. Support local farmers who grow organic.
  70. Eat less meat and dairy. This will encourage lower carbon emissions and water usage from the livestock industry.
  71. Use cloth towels instead of paper ones.
  72. Sponges are cheaper, reusable, and take up less space than a roll of paper towels.
  73. Use old newspapers for cleaning mirrors and glass. It won’t leave behind trails of lint like paper towels.
  74. Increase your use of eco-friendly cleaning products.
  75. Use the antibacterial qualities of Lemons for cleaning and removing tough stains.
  76. To maintain a sparkling clean toilet, use a mixture of baking soda and vinegar rather than harmful bleach
  77. Try using a combination of baking soda and vinegar to open a clogged sink drain.
  78. Coffee grounds are an easy, greener alternative to pest repellents. This is great for ants.
  79. Use coffee grounds to help remove grease and stuck-on food from pots and pans.
  80. Wash your clothes in cold water and air dry on a clothesline.
  81. To beat static cling naturally, add ¼ cup white vinegar in the washer’s rinse cycle
  82. Run your dishwasher only when it’s full.
  83. When traveling, turn off the lights, heat/AC and TV when you leave your hotel room.
  84. Leave the “Do Not Disturb” sign on the hotel door so housekeeping staff won’t clean your room every day.
  85. At a hotel, use just one bar of soap for both sink and shower.
  86. Return hotel brochures and maps once you’re finished using them.
  87. Don’t use the hotel laundry service since they typically wash each guest’s clothes separately, even for small loads.
  88. When hiking, stick to marked trails to avoid harming native flora.
  89. Shop smarter. Read labels, and ask questions like “What is this item made from?” or “How far was this item shipped?”.
  90. Buy local, seek out indigenous artisans and learn about their craft.
  91. Choose a “green” hotel that uses alternative energy sources and has a recycling program.
  92. Hang your hotel towels and re-use them for several days, just as you would at home.
  93. Heat and cool your home efficiently.
  94. Use energy efficient appliances (ENERGY STAR® appliances).
  95. Unplug electronics and chargers that are not in use to reduce energy consumption.
  96. Use an energy monitoring system.
  97. Turn off lights when you leave a room.
  98. Install a programmable thermostat to regulate temperature automatically.
  99. Use home automation to intelligently adjust temperature or turn off lights automatically.
  100. Don’t stream videos through your game console – Video game consoles can use 25 to 50 times more power to stream movies compared to a dedicated streaming device.
  101. Ceiling fans can create a cooling breeze, or simply circulate the air from your AC more efficiently.
  102. Replace inefficient incandescent light bulbs with efficient CFLs or LEDs.
  103. Turning off your computer at night.
  104. Install solar panels on your roof. Solar is the fastest growing renewable energy, becoming more efficient and less expensive.
  105. Contact your utility company and find out about renewable energy options.
  106. Lower the temperature on your water heater.
  107. Move your heater thermostat down two degrees in winter and up two degrees in the summer.
  108. Use a power strip for your small appliances and turn them it when not in use.
  109. Add insulation to your attic and seal all windows and doors with caulk.
  110. Replace older windows with more energy-efficient models.
  111. Change air filters regularly and upgrade your water heater.
  112. Turn off your furnace when the cold weather ends.
  113. Fix leaky faucets.
  114. Upgrade the aerators on your kitchen and bathroom sinks.
  115. Replace old toilets with modern low-flow toilets.
  116. Put a bucket in the shower to catch the grey water, then use that to flush your toilet.
  117. Take showers instead of a bath to save water.
  118. Reduce shower time by 1 minute a day
  119. Use a low-flow showerhead.