Today is Earth Day, an event celebrated annually on April 22 to show support for environmental protection.

Humanity is at a critical juncture in history, as global weather patterns are changing, and sea levels are rising, causing catastrophic flooding across the globe, among issues.

Taking of the environment is not just the responsibility of countries or governments. It starts from us, as individuals. Here are five ways we can help save the Earth for the next generation:

1) Conserve water

Turn off the tap while you are brushing your teeth. Remember that elsewhere in the world, there are people in poor countries who have to march for miles to get a pail or two of water from a well or river, for necessary use, while you let the tap run for nothing. Every drop should matter. Fix any leaking faucets/pipes, as you will get to save money (water bills), and save the environment in the process.

2) Drive less

The initial days of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown worldwide saw how the world became cleaner, due to reduced greenhouse emissions from factories, vehicles, and so on. Now that the situation is almost back to normal, you can still save the environment by opting to drive less. Carpool or take the public transit to and fro work. Cycle or walk to run errands near your home. This way, you get your much-need exercise, and save the environment at the same time. Opt to work from home if possible to reduce presence on the road.

3) Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

The three 'Rs' are huge contributors to conserving the environment. Reduce the amount of waste you produce, reuse items as much as you can before replacing them, and recycle items whenever possible. Items that can be recycled include glass, paper, cardboard, aluminium, and lead batteries.

4) Plant a tree (or more)

A simple act of planting a tree can save the environment, as plants naturally absorb carbon dioxide that we exhale. In turn, they provide us with oxygen. Besides, trees of all size and age also clean the air by filtering out all other kinds of junk found in the air, including sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and other small particles. In addition, plants also provide us food.

5) Quit using plastics

According to statistics, people around the world by a shocking one million plastic drinking bottles every minute, and use up to five trillion single-use plastic bags every year! Only about nine percent of these plastics get recycled. It is estimated that there are up 219 million tons of plastic in the world's oceans. You can do your part in breaking this cycle. Stop buying bottled water, and opt for filtered water instead. Say no to plastic bags when shopping and use reusable cloth bags instead. Stop throwing plastic on the road as they often end up in drains, and subsequently other bodies of water, polluting the water and endangering animals who call them home.

There are also many other ways you can also use to save the environment, such as using energy saving LED bulbs insread of incandescent bulb, reducing the use of chemicals, eating sustainable food, volunteering in community clean-up efforts, and educating the younger generation the importance of protecting the environment.

Of course the Earth won't be saved overnight by the effort of a single individual, but it takes small steps to complete a journey.

Get started today, for the sake of the next generation.

Photo source: pexels,