Everyone has the ability to make a difference in creating a sustainable future, whether that be done by recycling plastics or driving an electric vehicle. The next step for making a bigger impact involves joining local sustainable initiatives. Sustainable initiatives allow for like minded people to come together and work towards a common goal. An example would be a scheduled beach cleanup. One person picking up trash on the beach is not nearly as impactful as getting a crowd to come help, and having others around fighting for the same goal builds camaraderie and hope for a cleaner earth. Beach cleanups are one example of local initiatives, but there are so much more. Here we can take a closer look at sustainability initiatives to get involved in.

Public Cleanups

While a beach cleanup is a great way to get involved, most people don’t live near a beach! However, the official Earth Day website makes finding local cleanups easy. Website visitors can find a cleanup near them by visiting earthday.org and clicking ‘The Great Global Cleanup’ under the ‘Our Work’ menu. Once a user is on this page, they can find a cleanup by typing in their state, city, or zipcode. Cleanups can be found all over the world, and cleanups will require you to register online before the event. For users wanting to schedule a cleanup, they can register on the same page where volunteers find a cleanup. Happy cleaning!

Community Gardens

Picking up trash is a great way to fight plastic pollution, but those with a green thumb may prefer to get involved through their community gardens. Community gardens are micro farms that tend to populate in urban environments where people don’t have access to farmable land. Urban areas without access to fresh produce are also known as ‘food deserts’, which lead to low-income communities being unable to buy healthy foods. Besides improving fresh food availability, community gardens have environmental benefits as well. Growing food in a community garden helps create biodiversity of plants and animals in urban settings, improve soil and air quality, cut back on fossil fuels used to transport groceries, and allow for composting opportunities in the area. To find a community garden near you, visit communitygarden.org and click on the menu option ‘Find a garden’. Here you will find a map of gardens in the area.

Community Composting

One way to help contribute towards strengthening community gardens is by participating in local community composting. Composting involves tossing organic foods and other natural resources like leaves into a bin to decompose into fertilizer. On a community level, neighborhoods, restaurants, and apartment communities provide composting bins for collection to be settled and mixed later. In the city of Charlotte, composters have access to Crown Town Compost. Crown Town Compost provides composting services for homes, apartments, and businesses. Those interested in getting involved with composting can visit goodstartpackaging.com to find out more about services near them.

Closing Thoughts

Public cleanups, community gardens, and community composting are great ways to get involved with local sustainability initiatives. While these are great options, there are other ways to get involved in the community. For the initiatives listed above, click on the links below!