Letter to the Editor

Letter: What can we do?

To the Editor:

The Trump Administration is rolling back environmental programs and safeguards on a fairly regular basis. Our state legislature could step in to manage and oversee the voids that are being created by the roll backs. But if there isn’t the political will, interest, and money to do so, it might not happen.

So what, during all of this uncertainty, can we as individuals step in and do? Lots of things really. There are many small steps that each of us can take that collectively will make positive improvements to our present and future environmental quality. None of them require permission, just good choices.

Here are some examples for you to consider: Drive less. Learn to combine trips, use public transit and, when possible, walk. Fly less. Every day, U.S.-based commercial aviation uses about 63 million gallons of fuel. That fuel is converted into gases, particulate matter and sensible heat that is injected directly into the atmosphere. Consume less. Be less wasteful. Put up a clothes line and during the summer months, hang out your laundry to dry in the breeze and sun. Grow a garden, large or small, and produce some of your own produce. Make a plan to reduce or eliminate the use of pesticides in your yards. Accept some dandelions, clover, a few weeds, and ladybugs in your yard. Help farmers use fewer pesticides by being more tolerant of spots and blemishes on the produce you purchase. Ask the city, county and state right-of-way managers to use less herbicide on road shoulders and drainage ways. Make it part of your way of life to take good care of earth’s most precious resources; clean air, fresh water and healthy soil.  

Additionally, the City of Keizer has environmental protection information and programs that you can check into. You probably have some ideas of your own. Give them a try. If we all do just a few things consistently and regularly, we can protect and enhance our environment and health without the effort becoming burdensome. The countryside, waterways, air, soil, wildlife, and all of us will benefit. There is no downside.

Jim Parr