Trees provide food, energy and revenue. Plant a tree for Earth Day. ATTRIBUTION: Alex Indigo (Flickr)

Planet Earth is a miraculous place, providing us with everything we need to survive and thrive. In honor of Earth Day on April 22, events are held worldwide to demonstrate the importance of environmental protection and to give back to Mother Nature. You, too, can show your green awareness by participating in local events or celebrating on your own. I’ve compiled a few simple ways to celebrate Earth Day.

Make a Family Recycling Plan

Recycling at home is a green habit that benefits the environment. Best of all, everyone in the family can get involved. Keep recycle bins in strategic locations in your home and teach children how to separate their garbage. Items like plastic packaging, metal packaging, cartons, paper, cardboard, and mixed glass can be recycled. Other items, like batteries, electrical items, mirrors, plastic bags, hard plastics, broken glass, and textiles, should be disposed of separately.

Fix Leaky Faucets

Did you know that a leaky faucet drips at the average rate of one drip per second, resulting in a wasted 3,000 gallons per year? Fortunately, repairing a leaky faucet is generally an easy task. Check your home regularly for signs of leaks. If one is detected, repair the leak promptly to prevent excess waste. A majority of leaks occur due to a worn washer, valve, or O-ring. Purchase and replace these parts to stop the leak.

Buy Local

Every dollar you spend locally goes toward bettering your community and the people in it. Buying local means supporting independent, locally owned businesses, rather than nationally owned businesses. You can also reap the benefits of local buying, especially when it comes to your nutrition. Produce begins to lose its nutrients soon after harvest. When you purchase your produce from a supermarket, nearly half of its nutritional value is gone by the time you purchase it. By buying from a local farm, you can eat fresher, healthier food.

Create Your Own Compost/Mulch

Compost is organic material that can be added to soil in your yard to help plants grow. Yard waste and food scraps can be collected and made into compost to save money and prevent yard and food waste from going to the landfill. To effectively create your own compost, purchase a compost bin or use a standard trash can with small holes drilled along the sides, lid, and bottom to allow for drainage and aeration. When adding waste to your compost bin, include a mixture of green and brown fibrous ingredients.

Go Paperless

One easy way to eliminate waste and protect the environment is to go paperless. Going paperless can also help keep you more organized and increase the security of your personal information. Start by opting out of paper bills and instead choose to have your bill documents emailed to you. Other important documents, health information, statements, and passwords can also be uploaded using online tools or software to create electronic storage instead of paper files. Simplify the process by scanning the documents into your computer and placing them into separate password-protected files.