When you want to see a change in the community, sometimes it has to be you that has to step up. This is especially true when it comes to making your neighborhood a greener place. Most people are too busy to even think about making green initiatives for the community. But most of the time, they are more than happy to follow suit when someone else steps up first.
So, if you want to help out the environment starting with your own neighborhood, here are several green initiatives that you can start with:
1. Use eco-friendly snow removal
With winter rearing its icy head, it’s best to start thinking early about what to do to remove snow and ice. Besides getting snow removal services, you and your neighbors can look into more eco-friendly methods to remove snow and ice. Great examples include using used coffee grounds, pickle or cheese brine, and alfalfa meal, or going the old-fashioned way and shoveling snow yourself. You can even band together to remove snow and ice from elderly neighbors’ driveways to keep them safe without using gas-powered tools.
2. Plant a garden and share your seedlings
Planting a garden on your property is not only a great pastime, but it’s also a nice way to make your block greener and more attractive. Apart from that, you can produce your own vegetables and herbs that will help you save money on grocery shopping.
Inspire your neighbors to do the same. Share seeds or seedlings and teach them how to make their own garden in their backyards. Who knows? Maybe soon enough, every house on your block will have its own backyard garden.
3. Start a compost program
A neighborhood compost program can help prevent dozens upon dozens of pounds of organic waste from ending up in the landfills. Moreover, it will also provide free fertilizer or mulch to neighbors in need.
Start a compost program with your neighbors. If your backyard is big enough, build a large compost that can accommodate every participant’s compost material. Ask neighbors to drop off their compostable material in composting bins and then put it in your pile. After the organic material in the compost decomposes, you and your neighbors can use it as mulch or fertilizer for your lawns. Alternatively, you can donate it to local farms that can use the compost as fertilizer for their fields.
4. Make walking more enjoyable
More people will walk if your neighborhood makes walking an enjoyable activity. And the more people walk, the less they will use their cars to get around.
Contact your local government to propose some changes in the neighborhood that can encourage more people to walk. Suggest things like installing more street lights, planting more trees for shade, and sprucing up the pavement on sidewalks. More importantly, be a good example by walking around the neighborhood as much as you can instead of driving a car.
5. Volunteer at the park
If the local government has a volunteer program for those who want to help maintain the park, sign up, and bring your neighbors with you. If there is no such program yet, suggest it to the local officials. A volunteer program can help the park clean and green by having volunteers regularly pick up litter, maintain plants, and take care of the trees, among many other environmental efforts.
6. Send educational material to neighbors
Spreading awareness is one of the best things you can do to help out the environment. Use your neighborhood Facebook groups or group chat to send educational material to your neighbors. You can share information about energy-efficient appliances, composting, water conservation, recycling, and many other eco-friendly efforts that they can do at home. Sometimes, all people need is a little bit of info to make their own green initiatives.
7. Hold a cleanup drive
A clean-up drive is a fun way to bring the community together while doing something for the environment. Gather up your neighbors and clean up your neighborhood or other portions of your community, such as the park, near the rivers, or along the highway. You might even inspire other neighborhoods to do the same when people see you cleaning up the streets as volunteers.
8. Start or join a carpool
If you haven’t yet, start or join a carpool with your neighbors to reduce emissions when going to work or shuttling kids to school. This not only makes transportation easier for everybody, but it will also help you save money on gas.
As you can see, there are lots of ways you can help out the environment, starting with your own community. While these initiatives are some of the best ones you can try, don’t stop looking for ways to reduce your impact on the environment and encourage others to do the same.