Protect Georgia’s Coast Today and Everyday:Seven Ways You Can Protect Georgia’s Coast All Year
Use these simple tips to stay green throughout the year. Whether you make coastal Georgia your home or live outside its borders, these are real things you can do today and everyday to help protect Georgia’s coast and our interconnected ecosystems.
1. Eco-Friendly Cleaners:
Be mindful of what you put down the drain! Even small amounts of chemicals find their way into our oceans, consider going to more eco-friendly products. You can even make your own All-Purpose Cleaner: Mix 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/4 cup baking soda (or 2 teaspoons borax) into 1/2 gallon (2 liters) water.
2. Invest in Reusable Bags:
84 billion plastic bags are used annually in the United States, a significant portion find their way into our oceans and food chain. Reusable bags are inexpensive and easy to obtain. Once you have reusable bags, make sure to hang them inside your front door after unpacking so you won’t forget them next time you head to the store!
3. Bottle Your Own Water:
Almost 90% of plastic water bottles are never recycled. They take thousands of years to decompose and find their way into landfills and our oceans. Buy a water filtration system and your own resusualbe bottle containers. Recent studies have shown that the EPA’s standards for the quality of tap water are more stringent than for bottle water! Bottling your own water helps the environment and improves the quality of your own drinking water.
4. Turn Out Visible Lights:
Not only will you help reduce energy consumption, but turning off lights near beaches protects sea turtles. Artificial lighting confuses sea turtle hatchling and causes them to head inland instead of out to sea. Artificial lights also confuse returning adult females and discourage them from nesting. If you need to have lights on at night and you live near nesting sites, draw your curtains so nesting mothers and hatchlings can safely find their way!
5. Clean Up Trash:
Next time you’re out for a walk, bring a reusable bag and take the time to pick up trash you come across. You’ll feel good and help our environment. If you are walking along the beach, picking up trash prevents sea turtles, shorebirds, and other wildlife from becoming entangled in plastic, trash, and fishing lines.
6. Keep Kitty Inside:
House cats kill an estimate 1.3 – 1.4 billion birds in the United States annually. If possible, make your cat an indoor cat. Indoor cats also have longer lifespans! If keeping your cat indoors isn’t possible, follow these tips: add a bell to your cat’s collar, make sure your cat is well fed, and impose a curfew. Sunrise, sunset, and after bad weather are vulnerable times for birds, keep your cat inside during those times.
7. Make a Connection:
Spend time outside near the ocean or on your favorite path through the woods. Making a connection with nature inspires you to take better care of the environment and lowers stress and improves mood. So go ahead and get out there!