Thursday, January 22, 2009

It's a Start

In the words of our President, “each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.” The part about threatening our planet, the one that I will be leaving behind, is what hit a cord with me. Seems like Obama’s word also hit home with Annette. I was reading her blog from the other day and she’s making changes and I’m joining in and making some changes in our household too.

I live in a pretty earth-conscience progressive area. We have a curbside recycling program where the city gives us bins to put recyclables, cans, papers, and plastics in and a different bin to put our green waste, lawn clippings, twigs, plants, in. It’s incredibly easy to use and we are now at the point where our recycle bin is fuller than our regular trash. We’re off to a good start, but there’s more I want to do. More that I can do and more that I will do.

Conserving energy for me is something I am very accustomed to. I grew up during the “energy crisis” of the 70’s. I remember having to put a dime in a family piggy bank every time I left a room and didn’t turn off the light and watching lines, that snaked around city blocks, while people waited to buy gas on their even or odd days. I also remember going through state or city imposed water rationing where we couldn’t water lawns, and the motto for flushing toilets was, “if it’s yellow, then it’s mellow. If it’s brown, flush it down.”

I’m not sure if I’m going to go to that extreme, but this is what I am going to try to do more of:

1. Reach for a cloth towel instead of paper towels
2. Use reusable containers instead of zippy bags
3. Reuse the zippy bags that I do use.
4. Open the curtains and shutters instead of turning on more lights
5. Turn off lights, TV’s and anything electrical we aren’t using
6. Taking fewer and shorter showers. I’ve been in the habit of taking two a day and am going to cut back to once a day
7. Wear clothes until they are dirty before I wash them. I have a tendency to wear clothes once before I dump them in the hamper. Often times they really aren’t that dirty and could be worn again. This will not only cut down on my laundry, but also lengthen the life of my garments
8. Start composting, so I’ll have my own mulch
9. Buy local organic foods when I can. No pesticides in the earth and far less transportation bi-product (carbon foot print) involved.
10. Make only enough food for what we can eat and lessen our leftovers which usually end up in the trash

This is only the beginning and I’m sure there’s a lot more I incorporate.

What are you going to do? What ideas can you give me to add to this list?


Hanlie said...

Those are great!

I started composting about a year ago and I've never looked back. I keep a container with a lid in my kitchen and empty it into compost bin once a day. It's made a huge difference in the volume of rubbish we have picked up.

Anonymous said...

Those are all great ideas. Earlier this year every time I went to the grocery store I bought two more reusable bags, until I reached 10. The last time I brought my groceries home, the bagger bagged the groceries in a plastic bag, then put it in my reusable one!

Sherre said...

I seem to use a lot of batteries -- so I need to go more fully to rechargeable ones. And, as biz mentioned, I need to actually take my reusable grocery bags to the store (or better yet, keep at least a couple in my car at all times).

Tamzin said...

All very sound ideas

I recycle my bottles (and try to reuse my water bottles as much as possible), paper (newspaper/fliers, and all carboards that come into the house.

I don't turn the heat up too often, and I keep teh bedroom almost heat free (better for sleeping).

I'm a bit time water waster.... I need to stop running the water while I brush my teeth! And I'm a non-light turner offer..

so I guess its time to start about those things too. Lights off, less water waste.

:) thanks for the reminder!

Asianmommy said...

Great list! The big thing I keep forgetting to do is to bring in the reusable bags to the grocery store. I always seem to leave them in the car. Carpooling or walking to school & other activities is also something I need to work on.