Garbage day on our farm in South Africa doesn’t mean rolling a big green garbage bin out to the front lawn for pick-up. It means, hauling the bag(s) into the back of the car and driving 40 minutes on mostly country roads to our dump.
This is what we saw during Week 50.
I believe that if we all had to regularly face the inconvenience and this “in your face” look at what we’re doing to our planet, we’d re-think and take greater care about what we consume and how we treat our Earth. I know that my attitude and habits have changed since this first trip ever to our dump.
Don’t think for an instant that I’m an Angel. Not very long ago, I was probably one of the greatest consumers of ziplock bags. Before they became commonplace in Europe, I’d have family and friends send me boxes of them in a CARE package. When I traveled (which was often), I wouldn’t just single ziplock liquids in my suitcase, I’d DOUBLE ziplock them! So, I shamefully admit that I’ve contributed more than my share to dumps like these. Many a ziplock bag will remain on this planet much longer than I.
I don’t really want that to be my legacy.
Through the year, Nils and I both feel we’ve taken many small steps and made many lifestyle changes toward a more eco-friendly existence. But, we’re ready to up the ante again — how appropriate that we’re reaching toward a new year.
We’ve made Green Resolutions for the new year that we’d like to share. Many are made easier by the fact that as of Week 50, we already started with some:
- Consciously choose products with the least amount of packaging.
- Eat vegetarian and local at least one day per week.
- Register with and order through the local, organic farms delivery service. (something we’ve been “meaning to do” for a year now).
- Cut back by half our paper towel consumption — I use a lot of paper towels! I’ve read many good reviews of Skoy cloths and am going to see if they can become my alternative.
- ALWAYS carry my bamboo chopsticks in my bag (I haven’t yet found the perfect knife and fork to carry with me to replace plasticware at takeout restaurants).
- Be more diligent in using public transportation instead of the car (Nils isn’t always good about this).
- Be more conscious of what can be re-used or re-purposed (I’m going to re-learn crocheting now that I’ve seen some very cool ideas of making handbags from plastic bags).
And you? Have you Green Resolutions for 2011?