Everyone has different social and cultural goals but we all hope for decent housing, adequate food, good health, rewarding work and times to enjoy ourselves. But we need to add one more goal: living in a healthy and ecologically balanced environment.
One of the promises of the Government of Mexico is to promote the right of everyone to live in a healthy and balanced environment, which requires responsible participation from all citizens.
To achieve this objective, the Ministry of the Environment receives, directs and follows up on environmental complaints. However, this alone is not enough and Puerto Vallarta is a clear example of problems with the system.
Poor urban planning and inadequate public services like garbage collection result in our destination being often littered with debris around the main tourist areas. In this current tourism crisis, all residents of Puerto Vallarta have a moral obligation to bring attention and efforts towards the beautification of our streets.
Not littering the streets and clearing the few flood drains that exist throughout the city would result in streets that do not flood or at least not flood so quickly.
Ask yourself what you can do in your daily life to help preserve the environment. Here are some tips you can use every day:
• Keep a positive attitude that we can help the planet and is never too late.
• Get involved and read about climate change.
• Bring your own reusable bags to the grocery store. Only 3% of plastic bags are recycled.
• Turn off your computer before bedtime. If everyone did it we would save up to 83% of carbon emissions into the atmosphere.
• Unplug the cell phone charger and other electronic equipment that you are not using.
• When washing your clothes, use cold water in the wash cycle. This saves nearly 3 kilograms of carbon emissions in each wash.
• Use a reusable coffee cup for your take-out lattes.
• Avoid buying bottled water.
• Try to use both sides of the paper in the office or at school.
• When you leave a room, turn off the light.
• Replace your incandescent bulbs with fluorescent lamps or, even better, power saving bulbs.
• Reduce the amount of meat in your diet. The meat industry is responsible for 18% of the emission of greenhouse gases.
• Turn off the faucet while brushing your teeth or shaving.
• Use public transport as often as possible.
• Take short showers. You have no idea how much water we could save.
All of these seemingly small actions greatly help our planet. Every one of us needs to have a responsible attitude to achieve a better environment in which to live and leave to our children.
Jorge Chavez is Senior Editor at Mijo! Brands in Mexico.
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