It’s officially #WorldEnvironmentDay, and if you don’t know what this day is all about, then you’ve clicked on the right place. World Environment Day is the United Nation’s way of raising awareness about environmental issues. The day seeks to put a spotlight on protecting nature and facilitating conversations about environmental issues that the world is facing. World Environment Day calls for individuals to do their bit in protecting and caring for the environment. 

This year the theme puts the spotlight of Biodiversity. Swikblog defines Biodiversity as: 

‘Biodiversity is the variation of earth’s terrestrial, freshwater, and marine species, as well as their habitats. Biodiversity is vital to the survival of all life on earth and is also the cornerstone for the goods and services of the environment that allow human societies to thrive. Biodiversity provides us with food, water and resources as well as services such as climate control, pollination, flood mitigation and cycling of nutrients.’

Factors that affect the environment include, but are not limited to: 

  • Pollution
  • Overpopulation
  • Global warming 
  • Climate change 
  • Deforestation

Everything in an ecosystem is connected and dependent on the other, and every organism has a role to play. The three primary species are genetic diversity, animal diversity and ecosystem diversity. 

This diagram from Boondiblog perfectly illustrates what Biodiversity is:

types of biodiversity

Everyone has a role to play, and here are three easy ways to care for the environment: 

Recycle 

Recycling is essential in every household. Here are several ways to implement recycling in your home:

  • Limit the use of plastic bags and opt for reusable bags instead
  • Use glass jars or bottles
  • Recycle old appliances 
  • Buy products that are made from recyclable material 
  • Plant a tree in your garden if you can 

Save electricity 

Saving electricity is especially important in South Africa because Eskom is not in a good place, and the more power we save, the better our chances of avoiding load shedding. Here are some useful tips to save electricity at home: 

  • Turn the lights off during daytime 
  • Switch off unused appliances like TV’s
  • Use energy-saving lightbulbs where possible 

Save water

Saving water is essential. Cape Town almost ran out of water at some point, and extreme water-saving measures had to be utilized. To prevent a water crisis, it is essential to do your bit in saving water in your household. 

  • Check water faucets and pipes for leaks 
  • Use a bucket to wash your car instead of a hosepipe
  • Collect rainwater and use that for watering your plants
  • Use less water when washing your dishes

These are just a few basic ways that you can implement right now to do your part.