10 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day


Skip the Bath

A schoolgirl in Katmandu
A schoolgirl in Katmandu celebrates Earth Day by dressing up as our planet.
AP Photo/Binod Joshi

If you consider all the water shortages around the world, the amount of water we use to keep ourselves squeaky clean can seem a bit shocking. A daily shower isn't a matter of health; it's a matter of comfort. And for the comfort of a 10-minute shower, we consume up to 50 gallons (189 liters) of water [source: EPA]. To relax in a nice bath, it takes up to 70 gallons (264 liters) [source: EPA]. A typical family in Africa gets by on a tenth of that for an entire day, including drinking water [source: WPI].

So on Earth Day, stay a little dirty -- or, more accurately, slightly less than pristinely clean. In addition to saving up to 70 gallons of water for the people who really need it, you may even find it makes you look and feel healthier: Showering every day can wash away the natural oils that our skin and hair need to glow and can deprive the immune system of the germs it needs to fully develop [source: Salon]. (But keep washing your hands -- that habit is necessary.)

Up next: a time-saver that saves trees.