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3 Ways You Can Respect the Environment when Traveling

photo of plastics near trees

Image Courtesy of Pixabay

Traveling is a great adventure, no matter where you are. But it is easy to forget about environmental issues while you are out and about. However, small gestures can go a long way in helping with specific problems, so it is helpful to be aware of such matters. For example, plastics and other materials can be very harmful to animals and plants. Likewise, a careless BBQ can cause a wildfire, and litter is unacceptable anywhere.

Use Sustainable Items

With today’s awareness of sustainability and environmental issues, there isn’t really any excuse for not using green items whenever possible. Advancements in manufacturing technologies mean that almost anything can be made sustainably. Cutlery, plates, and clothes can all be sourced from sustainable means. 

Additionally, biodegradable materials should also be used whenever possible. Materials like plastics and foams are harmful to plant life, take decades to decompose, and can be eaten by wildlife. This subsequently kills them; dog poop bags are a prime example. You can now purchase degradable dog bags or even biodegradable urns. So, you can leave pets in their favorite walking spots after they have passed.

Be Aware of Fire and Fuel

If recent events are anything to go by, you should take wildfires as a warning about what can happen when we are careless. Although climate change contributes to wildfires such as those in California, Australia, and recently, Europe, many are caused by human carelessness or even deliberate arson.

One recent study by the University of Colorado concludes that up to 84% of wildfires are started by human activity rather than climate change. Many of these are intentional, but many are accidental, from the careless toss of a cigarette or using open flames in a high-risk area. If you are out in the open, such as when camping, be very careful when creating cooking fires and always put them out thoroughly with water.

Never Leave Anything Behind

Of course, when you are traveling, you should always be respectful of the immediate environment. For example, no one likes to pick up after someone else, so when out camping, don’t leave your litter for others to clean. Additionally, waste such as empty drink cans and half-eaten food can attract vermin such as rats and cockroaches, especially in motels and other accommodation areas.

Leaving litter around can also cause environmental damage. Wrappings like foil and plastic aren’t biodegradable and will attract birds and other animals. These animals might eat these harmful materials, which could cause them to choke or cause internal damage. If you bring it with you, then take it with you when you leave. At the very least, seek a suitable trash bin and dispose of rubbish accordingly.

The world is for everyone, so treat it that way. We all have a responsibility to treat the planet and each other well. Sustainable items such as cutlery and plates will help reduce harm to the earth, and use biodegradable materials when possible. Wildfires are becoming a significant problem. As if climate change fires aren’t bad enough, it is estimated that most wildfires are caused by human carelessness – so be careful. Also, don’t leave trash around when you visit somewhere. Not only is it unsightly and annoying, but it can cause severe harm to animals.

Heather Brummett

I am Heather Brummett . I'm just a real mom, sharing my real life experiences with the world. Thank you for being a part of my world. Here you will find recipes, crafts, fun ideas for the kids, how to work at home, encouragement, inspiration, and the latest news in and around Houston. To be featured or for information on freelance work contact me at [email protected].

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