Celebrating Earth Day 2020: USGBC shares 20 acts to help the environment

Today is the 50th anniversary of Earth Day! To celebrate the occasion, and as part of an ongoing effort that aligns with our belief that every person deserves a better, more sustainable life, we asked some USGBC staff to share their best tips for actions they take in their own lives to make the Earth a better place.

Read on as we dive a little deeper into some of the tips, and be sure to stay tuned to USGBC’s Twitter account for all 20 ideas that you can implement on Earth Day and beyond.

Switch to bar soaps.
Julia Pergolini, Marketing and Communications

“I’m officially making the switch to bar soaps only. I have one or two products left to finish up, but my shampoo, conditioner, body and face washes will all be bars by the end of the month; a proven far lower-impact option.”

Go native gardening.
Jenny Wiedower, The Center for Green Schools at USGBC

“Gardening is a fun and rewarding hobby, but it's also a great way to contribute to local biodiversity. Greater biodiversity = more carbon captured in plants. I encourage friends and family to select plants from their local garden store that are native to their area. Nonnative ornamentals support 29 times fewer animals than do native ornamentals. Every plant counts!”

Explore and document biodiversity.
Ana Ka’ahanui, Marketing and Communications

“Every day when I am outdoors, I use a free app called iNaturalist to document any cool nature observations, whether it's a wildflower, bug, mushroom or interesting tree. Over 1 million people are using the app and can help identify my observations. Once a few people verify my find, it becomes "research-grade" and is added to a global database for science. This data collectively informs scientists about local ecosystems and migration trends as it relates to climate change. This is a win-win. I get a cool nature pic, learn about what I found and contribute to the global research network.”

Complete a formal waste audit.
The Center for Green Schools at USGBC

Learn what makes up the most trash in your house and how that can be improved. Check out two of our Learning Lab courses: learn more about waste and participate in a waste audit at home.

Unwind outdoors.
Sarah Stanley, Marketing and Communications

“Spend time outdoors. Whether it's taking a hike, walking to the grocery store or sitting in your backyard, connecting to the natural places around us provides benefits we don't always appreciate or recognize. So be intentional about stepping away from the grind of every day.”

Join a compost program
Tia Metzger, Conferences and Events

“During the months between March and November, I only buy my produce from farmers markets and bring my reusable bags each weekend. In addition to that, I participate in the local composting stand and bring all my compostable food waste. Go reusable, go local and go compost!”

Try completely waste-free meals.
The Center for Green Schools at USGBC

While at home, get creative with recipes that utilize typically wasted food (leek tops, fruit peels, potato skins, etc). Consider making it a fun event by hosting a virtual cooking class, or enjoy your end product with friends and family over a video call.

Visit USGBC's Twitter for more staff tips