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Posts tagged ‘kids’

Going Green at Home: 8 Sustainable Actions You Can Do From Home

Although staying at home during a beautiful Utah spring is hard, social distancing and isolation are critical to “flattening the curve” as the COVID-19 pandemic spreads. Read more about how to prepare for COVID-19 on the City’s webpage.

Even though we are spending more time inside, we can all take direct actions to help protect the environment this spring.

8 Sustainable actions from the comfort of your own home:

  1. Fix the thing on your Fix-it List: While Utah Recycling Alliance regularly hosts Fix-It Clinics for the more challenging appliances and tools, there are many ways to tackle the smaller tasks from home. Consider sewing that button back on your shirt or tinkering with your old record player. Any small action you take to make use out of the old rather than buying new will help the planet.
  2. Lights Out for Birds: Although Salt Lake City’s Tracy Aviary is temporarily closed due to COVID-19 concerns, you can still show your love for birds. Two-thirds of migratory bird species migrate at night. Take the Lights Out Salt Lake pledge and turn off your lights between 11:00pm and 6:00am during March-May and August-September to help the birds find their way.
  3. Recycle Right: Recycling is one of the most important ways individuals can reduce their impact on the environment. Because there is an expected increase in household waste while residents are practicing social distancing, it’s more important than ever to recycle right. Check out our curbside recycle guides for a refresher. You can also watch this video from Ashley on our Education Team explaining what goes into the blue and brown cans.
  4. Turn Your Garbage into Art: Art projects are a great way to engage with difficult subjects. For example, the Washed Ashore nonprofit turns ocean plastic into beautiful sculptures to draw attention to plastic pollution. Check out Clever Octopus, the local Creative Reuse Center, for more inspiration on how to make use of old materials.
  5. Don’t Waste Food: Food choices make up 25% of Utah’s household carbon footprint. Don’t let food go to waste. Find out more about Composting and Dining with Discretion here!
  6. Plant Trees – With Your Phone! You can help reforestation projects through social media. Starting April 22, Cities4Forests is hosting a global photo contest. They have pledged to plant 1 tree for every photo. Find the participation rules here. You can also try out Forest, an app that keeps you on task and helps plant trees. You even get to choose the species of trees you’re planting!
  7. Go Pesticide Free! As you gear up for spring gardening, help protect the environment by going pesticide free. Take the pledge here! (we will be delayed in delivering a sign to you, but will do so as soon as possible!)
  8. Keep Your Carbon Footprint Low: Limited travel means lower carbon footprints. For those teleworking or staying home to protect our community, take comfort in knowing you are protecting public health and reducing your travel-related carbon emissions. You can take things one step further by implementing some of these energy saving actions at home.

BONUS ACTIONS:

  • Take the 2020 Census! The U.S. Census helps determine federal funding and resources for our community. Help ensure that Salt Lake City counts! You will receive an invitation with a unique ID number in the mail. This number can be used to take the 2020 Census online. More information is available here.

Mayor Becker Launches SLC Kids Explore Challenge to Salt Lake City Families

Go, Seek, Discover: 30 Minutes in Nature for 30 Days

SALT LAKE CITY – Mayor Ralph Becker launched the SLC Kids Explore program on Thursday and issued a challenge to local youth (and their parents) to spend at least 30 minutes a day outdoors connecting with nature for a 30-day period. SLC Kids Explore was designed to create exciting new outdoor opportunities for students and to raise public awareness about the enormous health and societal benefits of spending time in nature.

“Our children benefit enormously from spending more time in the outdoors,” said Mayor Becker. “Our goal for the SLC Kids Explore project is to create and instill a passion and appreciation for nature in our kids through outdoor play and educational experiences. Salt Lake City is home to one of the most beautiful natural settings in the country and it’s important we pass on our enjoyment and benefits of getting outdoors, and a sense of stewardship, to our children.”

A directory of free nature activities is available on the new public calendar at www.goseekdiscover.com with suggestions on different ways families can get active while having fun and exploring new dimensions of Salt Lake City. Participants can post their activities, share stories and earn activity pass rewards for themselves and their families.

An important element of SLC Kids Explore is to lay the groundwork, through education and outdoor experiences, to cultivate the next generation of local environmental stewards. These young people will certainly be tasked with addressing the increasingly devastating effects of climate change and the mounting pressures on ecological balance. For many Salt Lake City children, more contact with nearby nature, surrounding mountains and parks will literally open up new vistas with lifelong impacts.

Tips to Green Your Lunchbox

Fall is in the air!

With kids heading back to school, Salt Lake City parents will once again be packing lunches for them. Which makes it the perfect time for SLCgreen to share our tips for a healthy and waste-free packed lunched!

[VIDEO: Check out our segment with KUTV 2News This Morning]

1. Food First

ChooseMyPlate.gov has a lot of helpful advice on food groups, including suggestions on variety and tips to help you (and your kids) eat more fruits and vegetables. Check out the fantastic 2013 Healthy Lunchtime Challenge Cookbook containing 54 winning recipes from America’s junior chefs (PDF).

Did you know that the average meal travels 1500 miles to reach your plate? Local food travels shorter distances and therefore has a lower environmental impact. Consider sourcing your ingredients from local producers – Farmers Markets are a great place to start.

2. Ditch the Disposables & Save Money

Let’s compare the cost of a reusable lunch versus one that uses disposable goods. Learn more from WasteFreeLunches.org.

A Disposable Lunch

1 egg salad sandwich $1.25
1 yogurt .85
1 granola bar .45
1 apple .30
1 package of carrots and dip .65
3 plastic bags .12
1 juice pouch .35
1 plastic spoon .04
1 paper napkin .01
TOTAL $4.02
A Waste-free Lunch

1 egg salad sandwich $1.25
1 serving of yogurt .50
1 serving of granola .35
1 apple .30
1 serving of carrots and dip .25
water 0
cloth napkin 0
stainless steel spoon 0
packaging 0
TOTAL $2.65

With a waste free lunch, you can save $246.60 per person per year!

3. Get the Gear

Our friends at Earth Goods General Store have all the supplies you need to gear up for your reusable lunch. Their store has moved to a new location on 327 E 300 South in downtown Salt Lake City. You can also find them on Facebook. 

Here’s our suggested shopping list:

  • Lunch tote
  • Cloth napkins
  • Water bottle (we prefer stainless steel)
  • Glass, plastic or metal bento box-type containers in a variety of sizes for veggies, dips, etc.
  • Reusable sandwich bags
  • You can even pick up a book or two full of healthy lunch ideas!