Friday, April 18, 2008

Part II: Things I (try to) do right

1. I am trying to educate myself and become more aware of the variety of human actions that are damaging. I take the environment into account when I make a decision, and try to choose the least damaging option.

2. I try not to buy things I don’t need and won’t really use, or won’t use for long. I am much better at not buying unnecessary things for myself than in refraining from purchases for others.
3. I try not to buy or use chemicals unless I have to – no fertilizers or pesticides on my lawn, no bleach, few cleaning products, that sort of thing.

4. I try really really hard not to buy plastic, but toys are, so far, irresistible to me.

5. I buy organic and local products whenever possible.

6. I eat many meatless meals.

7. I have CFL lightbulbs in almost all outlets in my house, with the exception of a few that are so low wattage that I can’t yet find a CFL to fit. I don't watch television very often and try to be careful with my use of electricity.

8. I dial down my thermostat, at home and at work.

9. I keep my car tuned and my tires properly inflated to save gas.

10. I write letters and sign petitions.

11. I recycle. Recycling is not only good for the environment, it is a good reminder for me about which products contain excess packaging.

There are lots more things I should do – I am wasteful of paper towels and I still buy newspapers and magazines. I dry my clothes in a dryer – did you know that electric dryers account for about 10% of the electricity used in this country? – but I am not likely put up a clothesline while my house is listed for sale. Still . . .

12. I am working in the direction of overcoming those habits.

And it goes without saying, no bottled water! What steps have you thought of that you can recommend to me so that my "good things" list can grow?

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