Sunday, January 06, 2008

New Year's Revolutions

I don't know that resolutions are going to do it. If we want to turn climate change around we need a few revolutions:

1. Achieve clean green energy, and transportation both individual and public forms.

2. Ignite a massive effort to recycle more and use the toxic landfills less.

3. Invent and use alternatives to plastic.

4. Begin a major transformation from a consumer society motivated by convenience to one that is a conserving society motivated by a sense of fairness rather than greed.

These huge transformations must be fueled by our day to day actions. I can't invent a car that runs on compressed air, but I can save up so that when one arrives on the market, I can purchase it.

Made a resolution that helps you feel like you are participating in the revolution. I've been shopping with cloth bags since the fall of 2006. It wasn't easy at first, but I eventually realized that more reusable bags stashed in the vehicle makes it very easy not to forget to shop with them. Another tip is to hang the bags, once emptied, on the door handle so you don't forget to take them back out to your car.

I reached a milestone this week. I used up the last saved blue plastic bag for recyclables from my pre-cloth shopping bag days. I still have a huge stock of white (and other shades) plastic shopping bags.

There are some folks who are blogging their personal trash challenges. Fake Plastic Fish is the place to visit if you want expert advice on how to avoid plastic in your life. 365 Days of Trash is a blog for recording and collecting one man's trash for a year. He's going to stash it in his basement so he can come to grips with how much trash he is producing. Crunchy Chicken is working on a project to help us all get rid of personal waste, ie: excess weight and the propensity toward over-eating. You can join in Project Waste here. No Impact Man, the one and only, has finished his year long stint making no impact on the environment, but his blog continues and is an excellent resource on how to decrease your impact on the planet.

I don't have a focused trash project like those above, but I am working to be more mindful of what I consume and what I throw away. The goal is to develop habits that produce less waste and to make purchases that take packaging into consideration.

What are your personal climate control goals for 2008?


terra said...

We're running out of plastic shopping bags too. The City of Akron requires us to put recyclables in plastic bags. How can we eliminate the production and consumption of plastic bags when the city requires us to use them? I don't know what to do.

Village Green said...

I'm going to call the city and ask them. Meanwhile, I'm going to use up my non-blue plastic bags.

Fake Plastic Fish is reporting about the horrors that result from US recycling. It's all sent to China where it becomes a highly toxic polluting process of reclaiming the plastic.