As we were preparing the article on Evanston’s part in the September global climate strike, one interviewee commented that, although the City and several private local groups are working toward lowering Evanston’s carbon footprint, the community has no ongoing protests against climate change.

Greta Thunberg began her own climate strikes several years ago, skipping school on Fridays to sit in protest, alone for the most part, outside the Swedish parliament. More in the splashy American tradition, Jane Fonda arranges to be arrested every Friday, with friends, some of them famous, as they stage their climate strikes in the United States Capitol.

Our proposal for weekly attention to the climate crisis is much more modest – Make-Do Thursdays. On Thursday, the day before the weekend starts, do what you can with the week’s detritus.

• After the water in the tea kettle has cooled, use it to water a plant.

• Save the coffee grounds and work them into your garden in the spring.

• Take a last look at those leftovers. Maybe they are the fixings for a sandwich, soup or salad. Cut up dead-ripe fruit and toss it into a glass or plastic jar, fill the container with water and refrigerate it to make refreshing fruit-flavored water.

• Consider taking public transportation or walking to your destination, for a walkabout Thursday.

• If you are driving only a few miles in your car, keep your coat on and the heat off. Park a few blocks from your destination and walk the rest of the way.

None of these is a new idea, and there are likely dozens more that have not crossed our minds. They are supplementary, of course, and we are throwing them out to the community, where they will be sharpened, reshaped, amplified, modified and transmogrified as we all try to reduce our individual and collective imprint on this planet.

Share your ideas for Make-Do Thursdays with us at