So the Climate Strike Happened, Now What?

Hopefully, your posters are recycled and you’ve recovered from the excitement of September 27th’s Global Climate Strike. We’ve flooded the streets and our voices were heard, but what now? It’s not like the environment is all of a sudden going to fix itself after a global protest. Here are some simple ideas to keep the fight for climate justice going, even after the protests have stopped. 


1. Cloth > Paper

Hear me out, we’re all broke university students, and have you SEEN the cost of paper towels? Save yourself the hassle and cut up an old t-shirt or towel into rags. You pop it in the laundry after cleaning up and they’re as good as new. Bonus points for repurposing an item rather than throwing it in the trash.


2. Swap Your Daily Products for the Greener Choice

I’m guilty of always forgetting my reusable bags at home when I go grocery shopping, but there are so many products you can swap out in your life to make a difference that aren’t just reusable bags. Some of my favourites have been reusable cotton pads for removing my makeup, and silicone snack bags. Now I’m trying to force myself to make the switch from tampons to a diva cup. There are so many alternatives just one Amazon search away. 



3. Become a Paperless Student

We live in the technological age and so reducing your paper consumption is one of the easiest things you can do. I’ve recently made the switch to paperless and I can safely tell you I am never going back. I write all my handwritten notes on an iPad with a stylus pencil and I’ve saved so much paper. You can also get your textbooks or course packs as eBooks or PDFs. It can be costly, but if you’re up for the switch, you’ll never go back. 



4. Volunteer

If you haven’t heard of the uOttawa Free Store, you’re seriously missing out. The Free Store and the Office of Campus Sustainability are always looking for new volunteers to join the team. Another great initiative is MealCare, which helps prevent food waste by delivering leftovers to others in need. If you have a passion for eco-friendly things, they are organizations who need you. 


5. Going Beyond Meat

I’ll admit I hate salads and I love chicken nuggets far too much to give up meat entirely, but with the rise of so many plant-based alternatives to meat I’ve embraced this new change. Treat yourself to a Beyond Meat Burger when you have the chance, they taste exactly the same as a regular burger and they cost roughly the same.

6. Vote

The biggest changes come from small ones. Remember to read election platforms and research your nearest voting station to make your way over and cast your ballot on election day. The creation of new policies can arguably be the biggest difference-maker for climate justice, and it all starts with you. 


To quote one of my favourite climate strike posters: “There is no plan(et) B”. Remember to keep on fighting, even when the hype has died down, because this is the place we all call home.