Industrial pollution accounts for half of all pollution in the US. Of this half, a large portion comes from big retailers. These companies’ US factories are responsible for releasing three million tons of toxic chemicals into our air and 275 million metric tons of hazardous waste into our environment every year. They also destroy 15 million acres of land annually. Many companies also operate overseas, which accounts for the annual 1 billion metric tons of CO2 that the US emits internationally. Luckily, local retailers contribute much less to the climate crisis.
According to an infographic by HuffPost, ⅔ of local retailers use recycled materials. Recycling one ton of steel can conserve 1400 pounds of coal, 2500 pounds of iron ore, and 120 pounds of limestone, all of which are energy-intensive materials to mine and produce. Local businesses don’t often produce their goods internationally, and they don’t have huge factories. Shopping locally also benefits the economy and the community--local shops generate 20% more local economic activity than shopping at big retailers. Your business will also help these shops survive the COVID-induced recession.
For the next two weeks, shop at local farmers’ markets and shops instead of big stores. By taking the challenge, you’ll be benefiting the environment and your local economy.
Salguero, M. (2017, Dec. 6). Why Buying Local Is Worth Every Cent [Infographic]. HuffPost. Retrieved Aug. 8 2020, from https://www.huffpost.com/entry/why-buying-local-is-worth_b_4310520
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