What if we cared for our planet as much as we cared for our possessions? What if we changed the conversation away from climate change and pollution arguments to how we can be better stewards of our Earth? There are no right or wrong arguments for stewardship. Either you are a good steward or you are not.
What if local communities and cities took it upon themselves to be good stewards? There are so many technologies available now that could revolutionize how communities impact our stewardship.
1.) Why not incentivize cities in the Southern belt to add non-reflective solar panels to the roofs of all high-rise buildings? Cities in the Northern climates would add rooftop gardens and rain collecting systems. When solar windows become more readily available, require that all future high-rise buildings use this to supplement energy usage. The savings from energy bills would pay for the technology in a relatively short time.
2.) What if a “three ring approach” to carbon capture was a reality? Think of the center ring being the inner city. Within that ring are public art sculptures that are really carbon capture units? Just outside the city, in the middle ring are carbon capture trees. These trees could be made to serve as advertising billboards while collecting carbon. Imagine now, further out from a city, in the open space are carbon capture and recycling units. Minimizing carbon emissions from concentrated areas would certainly be good stewardship of the air we breathe.
3.) What if every city managed a healthy recycling program? For every trashcan on a street corner, there would also be a recycling can next to it. Some cities have already adopted this approach and in Plano, Texas, trashcans are available on medians of intersections to encourage drivers not to toss their trash when they stop. Why is this important? A lot of the trash you see floating in the ocean came from litter that made its way into storm drains, rivers and eventually oceans.
4.) What if we returned to the Pollution Prevention curriculum popular in the 1970’s that taught children about the real impact of littering? Yes, we have those today, but what if it was a real ongoing program that was taught year round, not just on Earth Day. We have Health classes, why can’t we be as committed to the health of our Earth?
5.) What if car tailpipe technology was accelerated so that all cars could receive a free emissions capture unit and minimize the particulate that goes into the air every time you drive?
These are just a few ideas and there are many, many more that each of us can make. Ask yourself, how can I be a Good Steward to my Earth?