Buy More Stuff for Earth Day? Buy local, organic, and fair-trade certified if you're going to buy, but consider not buying anything at all, too.
By Jonathan A. Scott, Communications Director
Everyone wants to be able to “do something” for Earth Day. For anyone who’s too young (or too old) to remember, this is the annual celebration whose first incarnation, April 22, 1970 helped to galvanize and symbolize the upwelling of popular and political support which made much environmental progress possible over the past four decades.
Before that first Earth Day, “The environmental issue simply was not to be found on the nation’s political agenda. The people were concerned, but the politicians were not,” according to then-U.S. Senator from Wisconsin and environmental hero Gaylord Nelson, widely recognized as “Earth Day Founder.”
Those words do have kind of a déjà vu ring to them today, “The people were concerned, but the politicians were not.”
Earth Day celebrations today include rallies, beach and park clean-ups, concerts and more. But many people these days celebrate Earth Day, indoors, watching TV and feeling guilty about not “doing something.” The modern antidote to “feeling guilty” – does the TV watching have anything to do with this? – is to go out and buy something. Since this is Earth Day, that translates into buying “green.”
If you’re going to buy stuff, whether guilt-driven or otherwise, “green” is presumably better than not, depending on the definition. Here is one alternative, which is interestingly enough offered by a company that is in the business of selling stuff. Check out Patagonia’s Common Threads Initiative and pledge to learn more.
Still determined to buy? There’s no question that buying local – supporting your local merchants and economy – can often be greener than online and can offer other benefits as well. Buying local and organic (when it comes to food or clothing) and also fair trade certified (food, clothing and other goods) can be even better.
A number of businesses offer Earth Day or Earth Month promotions. Here are a few that Clean Water supporters should be aware of, whether locally or online:
Aveda Earth Month – Clean Water Fund is proud to be a local partner for Aveda’s Earth Month 2012 activities, taking place at local salons in California, Pennsylvania and New England. Other great environmental causes (in other states and regions across the U.S. and Canada) also benefit from salon purchases and fun, innovative fundraising events organized by Aveda volunteers.
Bambeco – This online seller of eco-friendly goods who is part of the nationwide network of retailers who make donations to Clean Water Action when purchases are made using the special App for your computer’s web browser from our partners at We-care.com. Through May, Bambeco is also offering our supporters a 15% discount in addition to its donations; just use the code, CLEANWATER40, at checkout.
Aromafloria – “Our goal is to help our customers obtain balance of the body, mind and spirit, while preserving the Earth and her resources.” – Aromafloria founder Sharon Christie.
Her company won special recognition from the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics for its industry leadership. Through May 9, 15% of Aromafloria’s online sales benefit Clean Water Fund, and supporters using the CLEANWATER40 code at checkout receive 15% of their order.
And now for something completely different… but still totally relevant for Earth Month 2012:
CharitySub – Clean Water Fund is a featured cause on CharitySub through the month of April.
Watch our video, learn more about CharitySub’s innovative model, and support us.
One more way you can support Clean Water this April or anytime, year ‘round… You can make Earth Day everyday with a monthly donation to either organization (or to both), Clean Water Action or Clean Water Fund.