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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SDSU chapter.

As Earth Day approaches this Friday, I think it is important to talk about its history and easy things each of us can do to help show our love for our planet. Earth Day was proposed in 1969 by Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson and it helped lead to the establishment of the Environmental Protection Agency and the passing of the Clean Air Act in 1970. This was not solely a government lead effort, however. The first Earth Day was organized by thousands of young activists and volunteers around the nation. I believe it is especially important to remember that young people led this movement because it emphasizes that our efforts can have a nationwide positive effect. Even our small efforts can help establish a better world and keep our Earth healthy. 

I think to be able to help our planet, we first have to establish a better love and respect for it. Earth Day is a perfect opportunity to do this. This Friday, I would like to suggest everyone spends more time outside or in nature. This does not have to be anything big. It can just be sitting outside in one of our beautiful courtyards around campus or going on a hike. My favorite spots to sit on campus are the Turtle Pond and the Mediterranean Garden. I love to go to these places to study or simply relax for a bit. This weekend will have the perfect weather for this too. We also have a wide variety of great hikes around our area. Some of these include Cowles Mountain, Navajo Trail, or hikes at Torrey Pines State Park. No matter where you go, you’ll see beautiful scenery and have a great time. I think another way to make these experiences even better is by taking a break from your phone. For an hour or two on Friday, maybe leave your phone at home or stay off it so you can fully appreciate the nature around you. I believe personally experiencing Earth’s beauty is the best way to nurture a love for it. 

Once you have an appreciation for nature, it is easier to make changes to protect it. If you’re like me, you love to shop. The fashion industry is a big problem for pollution, but I think there are a few easy switches you can make to have less of an impact on pollution, while still being able to buy things you love. The biggest solution is to buy things second-hand. Thrifting cuts down fashion waste significantly and it’s a super fun activity to do. If you’re looking for a great weekend adventure, finding a small, local thrift shop to go to with your friends is a great option. Thrift stores are full of unique clothing items that need love. 

Many thrift stores will accept your old clothes as donations, and some will even pay you for them. This is a wonderful way to do your spring cleaning without creating unnecessary waste. Many online stores will also accept your used clothes. ThredUp will accept your old clothes and resell or responsibly recycle them and in return, you receive store credit for Reformation, a sustainable clothing brand. For  more information on this program, I have attached a link at the end of this article for their website. Another favorite of mine is Girlfriend Collective. If you’re looking for athletic wear, this is the perfect store for you. All of their clothes are ethically and sustainably made from recycled plastics, are extremely size-inclusive, and are  really cute. They also have a program called ReGirlfriend, which accepts your old girlfriend products once you’re done with them and recycle them into new products. In return, they will give you $15 off your next purchase. A problem I’ve had in the past– that I am sure many of you have had as well– is what to do with your old bras. Since it is often necessary to replace bras somewhat frequently, what to do with your old ones can become a big problem. I’ve discovered in the past few years that many online bra stores will accept your old bras and recycle them. One of the websites I have used is CUUP. They have a wide range of bras made for all body types. For $2 they will send you a recycling envelope that you can return to them with your old bras from any brand and they will responsibly recycle them. 

Fighting against climate change and taking care of the Earth can seem like a really overwhelming task, but it does not have to be. There are so many little easy changes we can do to help. Earth Day is a great opportunity to start making these changes.

I am a freshman at San Diego State Univeristy. My major is English with a focus on sing subject teaching in the hopes of becoming a high school teacher. I love to read and recently discovered a love for writing too. I’m very excited to be a writer this year for Her Campus.