Climate Change: What You Can Do to Help


From the graffiti on sides of buildings to statues in Central Park, New York City is packed with art.  Twenty years ago on Union Square in Manhattan a large electronic clock was installed on the side of a glass building. The piece was called Metronome. In late September, the clock went from measuring 24 hours cycles to measuring Earth’s decline. On Saturday, September 19th, artists Andrew Boyd and Gan Golan revealed their new display, “The Earth has a Decline” with the numbers 7:103:15:40:07.

You’re probably wondering, well what does it mean? The clock is counting down the exact time we have in Earth’s carbon budget.  The “carbon budget” is the allowable amount of  time to limit carbon emissions to a number that will prevent the global temperature  from continuing to increase. 

Carbon emission is one of the leading factors driving climate change due to human activity. If we don’t take action, the world could suffer more flooding, wildfires, and famine. All of this air pollution will also have a larger effect on humans causing an increase in respiratory and heart problems. The display in Union Square lasted until September 27 to raise awareness during Climate Week. While many people are aware of the issue at hand, no one really knows what to do about it. People tend to focus on the larger things they can do like donating money for research, which is why they opt not to do anything at all. Though it may seem like nothing, here are some things you can do in your everyday life to help: 

  • Turn off lights when you leave a room
  • Don’t leave the water running while you’re not using it
  • Walk or bike places instead of driving 
  • Use a reusable water bottle
  • Bring reusable bags with you when you go shopping
  • Take shorter showers
  • Eat all the food you buy instead of wasting it
  • Buy less meat and dairy products
  • Unplug things from outlets that you aren’t using
  • Use LED light bulbs in your house
  • Avoid using or buying plastic  
  • Start a garden
  • Spread awareness!!

These all seem like such little and simple fixes, but the impact they have is greater. If we start incorporating these small things into our everyday lives we can reduce our carbon footprints and help the environment. It’s definitely not easy at first, trust me! Spreading awareness to others is probably one of the easiest and most effective things to do. Use your voice whether it’s on social media or talking to others. If everyone helps out, we can stop the clock from ticking.