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Clothes and meat affect the earth. Are we helping our planet?

By Pamela Hernandez

Earth Day began in April of 1970. Politician and environmentalist from Wisconsin who served as a United States senator and governor Gaylord Nelson created the day to express awareness of “world health” in public.

Since 1970, many companies have been pushed to create controls in the quality of their products, and to be consciousness of the pollution they produced.

When I was a young girl, I saw many campaigns creating consciousness about recycling, saving water, and stopping plastic products. But are we really helping our planet?

Probably, like me, you have reusable bags, bottles, and containers. But do you know that clothes hurt the planet, too? Fast fashion creates pollution in the air and water. The production of clothing represents 10% of CO2 emissions globally, which is the equivalent of what the European Union releases alone.

The cheap and fashionable brands that you probably use are the top companies that pollute the world.

Is there a way to solve this problem? The answer is yes. One option is reusing your clothes by re-designing. You can add pins, patches, colors, etc. Another option is going to second-hand stores. These shops are great because you can also sell the clothes you’d like to discard, as long as they are in good condition.

At first, I didn't love the idea of this, but my opinion changed once I got in the store. I saw that the quality of the clothes was good, and they were in excellent condition. Plus, the price was lower than the original!

People around the world are talking about how much meats affect the environment. According to a recent report by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the livestock sector generates more greenhouse gases: 18% more CO2 than the transport sector.

If you don't like the idea of giving up meat, you can consider consuming less than usual. For example, instead of eating meat four days per week, you can cut it to two days per week. It is important to create consciousness about our actions affecting our planet.

I suggest you think about what you are doing to take care of our planet. This is an important year to generate a positive impact against climate change. Next November, world leaders will meet to talk about “The Paris Climate Agreement,” which is an international treaty on climate change. It was adopted by 196 Parties at COP 21 in Paris on December 12th, 2015 and entered into force on November 4th, 2016. Its goal is to limit global warming to well below 2, preferably to 1.5 degrees Celsius, compared to pre-industrial levels.

Next time you buy new clothes and meat, think about the impact you make on our planet.

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