WiseCrax: Happy Earth Day!

Being environmentally cautious and trying to lead a more sustainable life has become more popular in recent years. Especially with all these new documentaries where they show footage of plastic waste islands in the ocean or zoom slowly into the face of a cross-eyed, two-day old cow and cut immediately to someone eating a burger. It’s enough to make anyone feel personally responsible.

Maybe you’ve seen some of these movies and it stirred something in you. Maybe you’ve watched the news, seen an environmentalist get up to the podium to say “yeah, we’re all screwed,” and sit back down, and it made you want to make some lifestyle changes. 

That’s great! Even if you aren’t 100% sustainable, any act of eco-mindfulness is a win. But going green can be daunting, and you might not know where to start. Luckily, I took an environmental class freshman year… or was it biology… either way, I’m an expert, and I have some tips.

With Earth Day coming up on April 22, I hope you’re able to try some of these and make an impact!

1. No Plastic, No Guilt

Take a look around your kitchen and notice how much of your food is wrapped in some form of plastic. It’s jaw-dropping, but really, what can you do? Even if you buy reusable grocery bags, they’re not going to start selling Doritos farmer’s market style, in a big bin with a scoop. The plastic waste can feel unavoidable.

Simply unwrap whatever you’re going to buy at the store and transfer it to a reusable bag/jar/vessel. You’re still going to pay for it, but the plastic garbage will be off your conscience and left with the store. 

It’s not your fault that Fred Meyer made the active decision to only buy plastic wrapped foods. At the end of the day, living sustainably is all about making you feel like a better person, so pin the guilt somewhere else.

2. It’s Electric (Boogy Woogy Woogy) 

This just in, gas is out. Fossil fuels? We don’t know her. Literally, what are fossil fuels? Someone should explain that to me, please.

If I know one thing, it’s that drilling for oil is terrible for the environment. But maybe you’re not in a place to shell out thousands for a new electric “smart car.” 

What car brands don’t want you to know is that gas tanks and rechargeable batteries are completely interchangeable.
Take the weekend, grab some buddies, and DIY an electric powered car. I’ve found it works best to use 600 AAA batteries, but if you find something that works better, feel free to email it to the newspaper and I’ll make an amendment. 

3. Go Vegan

I know I know. Gross. But hear me out! It’s much easier than most think to adopt the vegan lifestyle. There are so many delicious options at the store, and lots of amazing things you can do with veggies and grains. Plus, many experts have said going vegan actually has some health benefits. 

Granted, some of those pre-prepared vegan meals are a little questionable, but being busy college students, are technically a better option than spending two hours trying to make asparagus appealing. 

There are ways to spruce up these frozen meals. This recipe was passed down from my great-great-great-great grandmother: What you’re going to want to do is get a vegan, microwavable lasagna. The fake cheese is going to look like Styrofoam, don’t let this scare you. Microwave until the plant based meat has melted into the noodles. Take the tray out of the microwave, being cautious because the paperless cardboard they put that food in has definitely disintegrated in the condensation. Put the food on a nice plate, and finally, dump a bunch of shredded cheddar on top.

 You won’t even be able to tell.