Eco Green Corner: Staying green for summer break

The end of the semester is around the corner, the weather is warm and the vacation destinations are beckoning. Beautiful beaches and exotic landscapes are just a plane, train or car ride away. But these modes of transportation contribute to your carbon footprint.
Outside the confines of our campus, it may seem difficult to continue green habits, but whether you’re going to the Jersey shore or Aruba this summer, it’s important to continue to be environmentally conscious when traveling.
If you’re sticking to the East Coast this summer, there are plenty of ways you can reduce your carbon emissions. Take a day trip to a beach that has a bus or train station nearby so you can utilize the mass transit system. You won’t have to deal with traffic or gas prices if you take a quick train ride to the beach. Or if you’re staying for more than a day and need the car to transport more beach necessities, carpool with friends and bring or rent a bike to get around town, rather than using more gas.
It’s a bit more difficult to go green when traveling by plane, but there are still things you can do to be eco-friendly. Flying itself isn’t the most eco-friendly way to travel, but airlines like Continental, Virgin Atlantic, Jet Blue and Southwest have been recognized for their environmentally conscious endeavors. They use paperless tickets, provide green tips to passengers and strive to make their flights as fuel-efficient as possible. Check your prospective airline’s environmental policies before you buy your tickets. Booking with one of these airlines is a good way to sneak a few more environment points onto your scorecard. Most airlines, however, don’t recycle, so hold onto your cans, cups and napkins and recycle them when you land.
There are multiple ways you can enjoy yourself this summer and be eco-friendly at the same time. At school, there are ample opportunities to be sustainable, but being ecological on your own isn’t as daunting as you may think. You will have a greener vacation simply by being cognizant of your actions and how they impact the environment. Leave no stone unturned. Look for ways you can reduce your carbon footprint this summer while still enjoying catching a few rays.

-Victoria Scheirer
Lawrenceville Eco-rep

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