Wrapping your head around the large-scale initiatives needed to protect the environment can feel…overwhelming. Combating climate change, cleaning up the oceans, and reducing waste are not easy, overnight fixes. But there are low-lift actions you can start doing right now, with little hassle in your day-to-day life, that can reduce your impact in significant ways. And if we all do those things, then collectively we’re talking about a widespread, lasting difference. And it can all start with a few simple steps.
We all know that choosing to walk, ride a bike or the bus, or drive a green vehicle cuts carbon dioxide emissions. But by how much? According to the Environmental Protection Agency, transportation still accounts for the largest percentage of our total greenhouse gas emissions, at 28 percent. Bike commuting instead of driving even one day a week can make a dent in that. The Institute for Transportation and Development Policy found, in a 2015 study, that a dramatic increase in cycling could reduce CO2 emissions from passenger vehicles by almost 11 percent by 2050. The same goes for staying closer to home for your next getaway. Instead of booking that plane ticket for a quick jaunt to a distant beach, drive an hour for a micro-adventure at that lake cabin you’ve been eyeing.
Buy Products that Last
Naturally, when you invest in a new gadget or piece of gear, you want that item to stand the test of time and the rigors of the outdoors. When you’re in remote places, you need gear you can trust. Choose durable, long-lasting, well-designed products—like that fleece you’ve had since last century or that backpack that got passed down from your dad—and that’s one less thing to end up in a landfill. Long-lived products that can handle tough conditions not only help the environment, they’ll save you money in the long run, too.
Extend the Life of Your Electronics
Electronic waste, or e-waste, is a legitimate environmental and public health threat. While e-waste makes up just two percent of American landfills, it accounts for roughly 70 percent of our toxic waste. And still, just a small fraction of our electronics can be recycled. One easy thing you can do is to use your current phone as long as you can by investing in a rugged case, like those made by LifeProof, which will protect your phone from dirt, scratches, water, snow, and drops—basically all things you’ll encounter when adventuring outside. With that, you’re free to bring your phone on your next climbing or paddling outing without fear of destroying it and having to toss and replace it.
When your current case finally craps out, replace it with one from LifeProof’s new WĀKE line. Each case is 85 percent ocean-based recycled plastic, and when it reaches the end of its life you can send back to LifeProof, who will repurpose the materials.
Commit to #MeatlessMonday Already
A United Nations special report on climate change estimated that the meat industry generates around one-fifth of the greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change. The Union of Concerned Scientists lists meat eating as the second largest environmental hazard, just behind fossil-fuel vehicles. You don’t have to go full-scale vegan if that’s not your thing. Opting to eat vegetarian just one day a week could save the equivalent of driving 1,160 miles. Who cares if it’s actually Monday? The point is: pick a day when meat isn’t on the menu. Besides, bean burgers and vegetarian hot dogs are actually pretty tasty these days.
Shop with Brands that Support Environmental Causes
You likely already practice some version of conscious consumerism, but it’s a habit worth doubling down on. The money you spend and where you spend it have a ripple effect. Buy from companies doing good and that good will continue to happen. Make sure sustainability runs deep, not just in the products themselves but in the environmental causes and partnerships that brand supports with help from your purchases. It’s the little things that can add up. Look for companies like LifeProof—who now donates $1 from every registered case purchase to water organizations like American Rivers, the Coral Reef Alliance, and Water.org—that make it very clear how they’re making an impact.
Reduce Single-Use Plastics
Get this: 8 million tons of plastic wind up in our oceans every year. A lot of that comes from plastic winding up in the garbage rather than the proper blue bin, so check the signs. Even better: don't use disposable plastic in the first place. Instead, opt for reusable sandwich bags, bring your own totes to the grocery store, carry reusable water bottles while traveling, provide your own cutlery when you get takeout, and shop in the bulk aisle with your own containers.
Life is a delicate balance of demands and desires. Obligations pull you in one direction, passions another way, connections somewhere else. LifeProof is here to help you spin those plates, keeping you in the moment with an eye for what's next. As you flow between working, working out and getting out, LifeProof lets you find balance.
Crafted for modern living, LifeProof gear keeps pace with your calendar. Blending performance and design with an infusion of sustainability, our cases withstand abuse with an understated look and an abiding respect for our planet. Because we believe in striking our own balance as we bring harmony to your life.
For more information, visit lifeproof.com. #ShowUsYourProof