Welcome to a summer of sustainability! As you embark on your vacations, let's make conscious choices to protect our planet and create a positive environmental impact. Whether you're headed to the beach or the swimming pool, it's time to embrace a sustainable mindset.
The first step to committing to a sustainable summer is to keep responsible tourism at the forefront of our choices. It's crucial to show respect for the natural habitats and wildlife we encounter during our travels. When selecting destinations, prioritize places that emphasize a commitment to sustainability. Look for locations with eco-certifications and environmental conservation programs, as these are indications of their dedication to protecting the environment. One way to ensure your accommodation aligns with your values is by opting for an eco-friendly hotel or lodge. These establishments are designed to minimize their environmental footprint through various practices. They may employ energy-efficient technologies, use renewable energy sources, implement waste management systems, and prioritize water conservation. Staying in such accommodations allows you to enjoy your vacation while supporting businesses that prioritize sustainability.
In addition to mindful accommodation choices, consider the mode of transportation you use when traveling to new places. Opting for public transportation, such as buses, trains, or trams, is an eco-friendly alternative to driving a private vehicle or taking a domestic flight. Public transportation not only reduces carbon emissions but also promotes greener travel by utilizing shared resources. By choosing public transportation, you contribute to alleviating traffic congestion and minimizing air pollution in your destination.
When it comes to skin care and beauty products, choose to apply biodegradable sunscreen on your skin to avoid harming marine life. Opt for mineral-based sunscreens that use natural ingredients like zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, as they have a lower environmental impact. Consider using reef-safe sunscreens that are formulated without oxybenzone and octinoxate, which can harm coral reefs. Look for skincare and beauty products with organic or natural certifications to ensure they are free from harmful chemicals and synthetic additives. Explore DIY sunscreen recipes using natural ingredients like coconut oil, shea butter, and essential oils, which allow you to customize and control the ingredients you apply to your skin. Look for sunscreens that come in eco-friendly packaging, such as recyclable or biodegradable containers, to reduce waste. Try to use multipurpose products that serve multiple functions, such as moisturizers with built-in sun protection, to minimize the number of products you need.
Another sustainable practice is to prioritize reusable options. Embrace plastic-free picnic and barbecue options by using reusable utensils, plates, and containers to significantly reduce waste. Instead of using disposable napkins, pack cloth napkins or handkerchiefs that can be washed and reused. Choose snacks and treats that come in sustainable packaging, such as compostable or biodegradable materials, or make your own homemade snacks to eliminate packaging waste altogether. Wrap sandwiches or snacks in beeswax wraps or reusable silicone food covers instead of plastic cling wrap. Opt for fresh produce and food items from local farmers markets or local farms, supporting sustainable agriculture practices and reducing the carbon footprint associated with long-distance food transportation.
While you’re outside this summer, partner with CIRT by using the Marine Debris Tracker app to help reduce plastic pollution. This app allows you to report and track marine debris that you encounter during beach cleanups or coastal activities. The Marine Debris Tracker provides a user-friendly interface and simple data submission process, making it accessible to individuals of all ages and backgrounds. Users can record the location, quantity, and description of the debris they find, providing valuable data for researchers, scientists, and environmental organizations. This would take up only a few minutes of your summer travel, but it would make a huge difference to this world, by helping to create a positive environmental impact.