ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Many Americans will be celebrating the Fourth of July with a backyard barbecue with family and friends. But all of these parties have the potential to affect the environment. Restoring the health of the planet can feel a little overwhelming, but big change can start with smaller changes in peoples’ backyards.
Sarah Hurteau is a climate expert and party planner with the Nature Conservancy, the world’s largest conservation organization with a chapter in every state and works in more than 70 countries. Hurteau suggests to help the environment, people can start by changing up their Fourth of July menu. “We all know that adding fruits and vegetables to our diet is healthy for us, but it’s also healthy for the planet,” says Hurteau. She says it all has to do with a product’s carbon and water footprint and buying your fruits and vegetables locally lessens the size of the footprint and helps combat climate change.
Another big factor is the plates and utensils used during cookouts. Hurteau says the best way to help the environment is to use reusable materials like Lexan or melanin instead. “If you’re having a barbecue out at the park or you’re not at home, you can use the paper products that are biodegradable, compostable, or made of recycled material,” Hurteau adds.
More information can be found on the New Mexico chapter of the Nature Conservancy’s Facebook page.