Olympic Heights Key Club joins climate change fight; here’s how you can join in

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Last month featured Governor’s Week in the Key Club organization and the theme was “Generation Green.” Olympic Heights Key Club president C.J. Vyazmensky explained that Governor’s week was a district wide event (the Florida District includes not only the Sunshine State, but also the Cayman Islands and the Turks and Caicos) where Key Clubbers devoted time and service to projects in theme with the governor’s project. The Key Club Florida District governor Stara D’haiti wants to work towards fighting climate change, so the OH Key Club worked on several environmentally centered projects. 

One doesn’t have to be a member of Key Club to join the fight against climate change. The OH Key Club chapter offers these four tips to help fight climate change.

Use a clothesline to dry clothes. While hanging up clothes with pins seems slightly old-fashioned, it has a number of benefits for the environment. The first benefit of air drying is a reduction in electricity used to power a dryer. Using the dryer less means a lower electricity bill as the dryer is one of the most energy absorbent appliances in a home. In addition to a reduction in money not well spent, clothes that are hung on a clothespin will be able to hold and trap the smell of the detergents better, so clothes smell fresher and will last longer as they are not battered around in a dryer.

Buy a reusable water bottle with a metal straw. Reusable water bottles and metal straws are a newer trend in the fight against climate change. The investment for a more energy efficient water bottle reduces plastic in landfills that end up in oceans. Plastic can take thousands of years to deteriorate in the oceans and most marine animals eat fragments of the plastic when they search for food. Because it never fully breaks down, the plastic travels up the food chain and makes its way to humans when they consume seafood. Metal straws and a reusable water bottle eliminate this problem because there is no excess plastic material being dumped into the ocean.

Use cruise control whenever possible. Using cruise control reduces the output of gas by 15 percent. Much of Earth’s increased carbon dioxide levels come from by-products of gas put out by cars. The carbon dioxide (CO2) sits in the atmosphere and increases temperatures causing the greenhouse gas effect. Something as simple as cruise control can help reverse this effect and help drivers save money because less money is being spent on gas.

Eat vegetarian for one day a week. A major contributor to the environment’s decline is the meat industry. Large amounts of methane gas (CH4)  are given off by livestock when killed. Methane gas has carbon in it that enters the atmosphere, combining with already present CO2, adding to greenhouse gases. Going vegetarian can cut greenhouse gas emissions by 63 percent. To raise livestock requires large plots of land for the animals to live on, as well as fields of grain that need to be grown to fatten the animals. This depletes the nutrients in soil needed in plants to maintain the optimal oxygen to carbon dioxide ratio. 

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