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How You Can Go Green This Year

By HERWriter
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As the New Year continues to breathe fresh—and, I hope, healthier—life into us all, The Worldwatch Institute, a global environmental research organization, has released its 12 Simple Steps for Going Green in 2012.

Beyond suggesting people recycle more, buy local foods, and partake in car-sharing programs, the guidelines also highlight the importance of planting a garden, cutting down meat consumption, and switching over from incandescent light bulbs to compact fluorescent lamps. The Worldwatch Institute has provided a comprehensive and unintimidating approach to more ecologically responsible living, but it’s important to consider in greater detail why some of these steps—while key to a greener planet—are not as simple as they appear.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll keep saying until I’m blue in the face: teaching and implementing organic farming practices in the U.S. and around the world is among the simplest, most sustainable, delicious things we can do for our well-being. Organic products nourish our bodies without also exposing us to the harmful chemicals that pervade traditional farms.

While detractors (more commonly known as pesticide manufacturers) claim widespread organic farming is not a viable option because it would yield lower food production, experts at The Rodale Institute, which for 55 years has been teaching farmers around the world how to grow organically, note that industrial agriculture is actually undermining the soil, water, and diverse plant life needed to sustain the world’s growing human population in the long term.

The organic farming message put forward by large organizations like Rodale is undoubtedly what inspired Matt Klebes, a Peace Corps volunteer from New Hampshire, to impart the gospel to youths in the Philippines through the Organic Farming Center.

Aside from refining and improving farming techniques, schools need to stress nutrition education, and I’m not talking about food pyramids.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.