Earth Day is a time to make your life and the planet a better place. Here are five things you can do this week to honor the planet, form new habits and improve our fair state and the world.

1. Recycle at your home and workplace. You've heard it before but recycling can make a difference for the planet and the good thing is, many cities are making it easier for residents to recycle their trash. Make sure you're doing it right (meaning, make sure you're not contaminating your stockpile of recycleables!) with our handy guide. Also, Easter Seals is having a Community Shred Day from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. Saturday (April 26) where individuals, schools, churches, and businesses can drop off their paper and secure documents at the Center for Training and Wellness, 14901 Cantrell Road, Little Rock, and they will shred/recycle for free. As a thank you, coffee will be provided by Starbucks while volunteers unload your vehicle!

2. Get involved in energy policy by letting your state and federal representatives know your stance on important legislation, like the federal Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act. See what towns across the state are making strides toward energy conservation in our "Making the Grade" feature.

3. Eat and buy local, which benefits the planet and the community at the same time. Drop by some of the area's locally flavored eateries, shops and more. Have trouble making it to your nearest farmers market? Check out the Little Rock Urban Farm's CSA program where you can conveniently buy local produce around the corner.

4. Try biking, walking or taking public transit instead of driving this week, and for making driving greener, check out what Brad Audrain is doing with his eco-friendly company Green Cab Co. in Fayetteville and how Jeremy Lewno is transforming biking in the capital city here.

5. Plant a tree. Besides their aesthetic value, trees mitigate urban heat island effects, shade our homes and businesses, purify our air and provide habitat for birds and other wildlife. Plus, National Arbor Day is Friday (April 25)! Check out the Arbor Day Foundation's list of trees appropriate for our area.

Flip through the new issue of Arkansas Green Guide for even more green tips, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up-to-date with green news and developments in Arkansas.