- Don’t consume animal products. Go vegan. Animal agriculture is the largest driver of deforestation in the world, and the largest anthropogenic user of land. It also produces more greenhouse gas emissions than the entire transportation sector worldwide. And, of course, animal products involve horrific cruelty to the most vulnerable beings on the planet, and are completely unnecessary for us to consume.
Is that it? Not quite. There are other important ways our actions have a serious impact on the planet and other animals.
- Abstain from using single-use plastic. Much of it can’t be recycled (even if you place it in a recycling bin). We may use a plastic fork or straw for a few minutes or less, but it lasts pretty much forever in the environment. And it’s adding up fast all over the globe, with millions of tons ending up in the oceans, causing countless fatalities for marine and other animals who mistake it for food or get trapped in it.
- Use renewable energy wherever possible. Huge amounts of CO2 are released from power plants. In addition to being a serious driver of climate change, about a third of this CO2 is absorbed by the oceans, where it turns into carbonic acid and causes the ocean to acidify. This is already affecting sea animals who depend on shells, and has even been fatal to some creatures like oyster larvae.
- When it comes to procreating, please consider the planetary benefits of small families instead of large ones, and please consider adoption as well. Our population is increasing by an relentless 1.5 million people (net) every single week, and this multiplies every single impact we have on the planet across the board.