In New York City today, representatives from over 170 countries will sign the Paris Agreement on climate change. Each country agreed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in an effort to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius. That’s good because 2015 was the hottest on record. In February 2016, the global temp rise was hit 1.35 degrees Celsius.
It’s been a busy year on the environmental front. Pope Francis’ Laudato Si’ (On Care for Our Common Planet) offered a moral sense of urgency to tread more carefully on our planet. Obama’s Clean Power Plan is pushing each state to reduce carbon dioxide by 32 percent by 2030. Maryland’s General Assembly just signed landmark legislation committing our state to a whopping 40 percent greenhouse gas reduction by 2030. What can you do in here in Baltimore to help the planet? Check out the National Aquarium’s eco-smart and fun 48 Days of Blue challenge. Join the online community, take the daily challenges, and give something back to our amazing life-sustaining planet.
With protecting and preserving our ocean on the forefront, the 48 Days of Blue daily challenges will help every ecosystem, including protecting our oceans. Each day, one eco-change will hit your inbox. What may seem small at first can add up to big differences.
Check out these 48 Days of Blue challenge-related facts:
1. Approximately 500 million plastic straws are used and disposed of in the U.S. every day. That’s enough to fill 127 school buses.
2. Americans use an estimated 100 billion plastic bags each year. Floating in the ocean, these bags are often mistaken for jellyfish by unassuming sea turtles and other marine species.
3. Transportation accounts for one-fourth of all greenhouse gas emissions in the United States every year. An average passenger vehicle emits 5.1 metric tons of CO2 per year.
4. Only 2.5 percent of our planet’s water is freshwater, while a staggering 97.5 percent is saltwater.
5. A bathroom faucet runs at approximately two gallons of water per minute.
6. It takes an estimated 1,850 gallons of water to produce a pound of beef.
The oceans, our planet and future generations need our help in living sustainably. Consider joining the thousands of Baltimoreans already enrolled in the 48 Days of Blue Challenge. Have some fun, earn eco-badges, and track your progress. There’s never been an Earth Day where the stakes are higher. But, the collective positive momentum to right this crisis has never been greater.