Spring Into Action this Earth Day
Spring is springing across North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, but it’s not just the flowers growing at full speed—so are the in-school programs brought to you by Duke Energy, The Conservation Caper and Energy Agents. Participating students, families and educators know that this is the perfect season to enjoy the outdoors, sniff a couple of wildflowers and breathe in a couple lungs’ worth of good, clean air. These simple pleasures can only stem from a healthy planet, and we here at the My Energy Kit Team and Duke Energy believe it is our responsibility to make sure Mother Earth is well cared for. Between planting gardens, riding bikes, and the beginning of softball and baseball season, it can be hard to fit in a little TLC for the planet. Thankfully, a holiday known as “Earth Day” helps us remember our duty.
First celebrated in 1970, Earth Day galvanized the country into immediate, Earth-saving action by jumpstarting the conservation movement as folks began to realize that the environment needed as much stewardship as anything else. Communities began to invest in recycling facilities and various environmental advocacy groups sprang up to preserve and restore the natural landscape. Several species of animals were even saved from possible extinction including the bald eagle and American alligator. These efforts, along with the more modern shift toward “going green,” have significantly improved the lands we enjoy in our country and around the world.
Earth Day is celebrated every year on April 22. Okay … clean air, endangered species and the EPA? It seems like a big job. How can YOU protect the planet and participate in Earth Day? If students and families remember anything from The Conservation Caper and Energy Agents, we hope they will remember this: every little bit helps. Even in the comfort of your own neighborhood or classroom, here are a few ways you can do your part and have fun, too!
Participate in the My Energy Kit Challenge and request your own Energy Kit. Packed with energy-saving items such as LED light bulbs, faucet aerators and an energy-efficient showerhead, each kit is designed to save the maximum amount of energy in your home. All you have to do is change a light bulb and you’re helping the planet! Bonus: each Energy Kit is provided to families at no cost by Duke Energy, and your school could get cash rewards for saving energy.
Plant a tree. Often the best way to do things is the simplest. Pick out your favorite coniferous or deciduous tree, find a good spot in the yard and invite some friends over to help out. Not only will you have fun outdoors but you’ll be helping out the planet in a major way. Trees are natural producers of oxygen, prevent soil erosion, and actually clean the air by intercepting pollutants.
How and where are you going to get that tree? If there’s a home or garden store within walking distance, take a hike! This Earth Day, consider taking a walk to your favorite store or restaurant. We all know that walking is one of the easiest, healthiest things one can do, but any time you can keep your car in the garage, the healthier our ozone layer will be, too.
For those parents and teachers out there, engage the little ones by hosting a day full of games and activities centered on the idea of conservation. You can even spice it up with a little competition. For instance, take a group of youngsters into the neighborhood armed with trash bags and gloves. Challenge them to collect as much litter as possible, and select an Earth-friendly prize for the winner!
Share in the Energy Kit experience with your children. Upon receiving your Energy Kit, go through each item with your youngster and use it as a teaching moment. Ask them what they learned from The Conservation Caper or Energy Agents. What excites them about the Energy Kit, and how will they practice energy conservation in their lives? You can make a lot of memories installing a fancy new light bulb together!
Curious about what more you can do? There are more tips in the D.O.E. Energy Savers Booklet included in every Energy Kit as part of the in-school programs from Duke Energy and The National Theatre for Children. This Earth Day, we hope students and their families request their free Energy Kits, get “Energy Wise” about what they can do to protect the planet, and most of all, celebrate!