Can you believe this Saturday is Earth Hour? It definitely caught me off guard. Where have the past few months gone? We’ve covered tons of notable campaigns and days of action on the Activist Toolkit throughout early 2014, and now it’s time to get ready for Earth Month and all the organizing that comes with it.

If you’re participating in Earth Hour this year, consider making a commitment to other types of environmental activism for the days and weeks after your “lights out” statement. It’s a great way to embrace the positive spirit of change that surrounds Earth Hour, and also helps you to spread awareness about the importance of green living and movements to address climate change — a year-long concern.

Perhaps you’re trying to share the message of environmental activism, but someone in your life is just a little too stubborn to get started. Or maybe they only have the ability to make small changes right now. Don’t worry, there are tons of simple ways to make a big impact, and you can find a few of them in this tool. You can also try to encourage folks you know to start composting. It’s a simple, easy, and soil-enriching way to give back to the earth (and grow a great patio tomato plant or windowsill herb garden!).

If you want to go a little “bigger” with your green living changes, check out the Earth Easy blog for tons of awesome adventures in alternative energy, gardening and collecting rain water (just to name a few).

On an international level, dangerous mining projects are a serious threat to the rainforests and other environments in Latin America. Support affected communities in El Salvador by utilizing some of these resources from an international solidarity network.

Another awesome, personal way to engage with climate change activism is to adopt a vegan way of eating and living. I know this can be a big change, especially for folks who were raised on a “meat and potatoes” diet (although you can keep your potatoes, of course! You can have mine too.) but the environmental benefits are definitely something to consider. This week the toolkit has a couple of different resources to help prospective or new vegans:

A Starter Guide with information, tips and recipes!

A shopping guide with tips on vegan substitutions for your favourite animal products

Tips for engaging in vegan activism at work (without getting fired)

Going vegan for health or animal rights reasons is admirable — and people should support your right to make personal dietary choices! Just remember, you owe the same respect to everyone else, regardless of their diet. 

This fabulous body positive blog and community for queer folks and people of colour emphasizes fat acceptance. This quote from Jill Andrew was recently posted to the blog, and it sums up this idea of rejecting the “morality” of a diet really well:

“Fat is just a description. Its not a prescription — and its certainly not an invitation for hate, for exclusion, for ridicule, for assaults against my body. And it sure as heck ain’t an excuse to make judgments about my health or my morality.”

Speaking of health, don’t forget to check out this week’s 3-Minute Action, on the need to demand more from the federal government during the renegotiation of the Health Care Accord.

Do you have any traditions for Earth Hour or Earth Month? What do you do to “live green?”

Megan Stacey

Megan Stacey

Megan Stacey is a fourth-year journalism student at Carleton University. She has experience in magazine writing, communications work, television, radio and weekly news rants (aka Friday night dinner...