Author Topic: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?  (Read 379500 times)

Hirondelle

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1603
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1250 on: April 21, 2019, 11:31:06 AM »
I downloaded an app against food waste, where you can buy leftover fresh products from several supermarkets, hotels and bakeries in the area. So far both yesterday and today everything seemed sold out in no-time though.

What is the name of the app?  It sounds promising.

Too good to go.

Started in Denmark and it's now available in more countries, not sure if it's available in the US yet though!

I picked up leftover groceries from the organic store and sushi from a new restaurant yesterday. A massive (45cm) organic bread, two types of yoghurt, vegan fish fingers and 8 1/2 rolls of sushi for the grand total of €8.

The only downside to the app is they sell out so quickly... It's really popular in my city.

That sounds awesome! I have checked the app several times but it's always sold out :(. I've seen one of the bakeries that still had sth available once, but I thought I'd be getting too much for myself to finish as I don't have much freezer space and don't wanna eat bread 24/7 for 2 days straight :p. So for now I deleted the app again, guess I will retry in a few months.

Dollar Slice

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5762
  • Age: 43
  • Location: New York City
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1251 on: April 21, 2019, 11:42:46 AM »
RE: Carbonfund.org, @Malaysia41  might know.

I haven't looked too closely into it. All of my self-imposed carbon taxes go directly to vegan activists and Represent.Us. Sorry I couldn't help

Thanks anyway (to everyone who responded!).

I tried to go ahead and make the donation from the rewards website thingy and the button won't work in three different browsers on two devices, and neither does their "contact us" form where I tried to inquire about their website being broken, so... :-/ Hopefully after the holiday weekend I'll be able to get through to someone there. I have enough points for 4 tons of carbon offsets, if I can get it to actually work.

Small things I've been doing: I'm planning a vegan dish for my weekly-ish batch cooking. And I just realized I haven't taken a taxi in over 10 weeks. (Thought of it because I'm breaking my streak today - going to my parents' house and the first part of the trip is difficult on transit, especially on the holiday/Sunday schedule. So I'm taking a short taxi ride to the train station instead of a walk plus two buses.)

Imma

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2390
  • Location: Europe
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1252 on: April 21, 2019, 11:55:30 AM »
I downloaded an app against food waste, where you can buy leftover fresh products from several supermarkets, hotels and bakeries in the area. So far both yesterday and today everything seemed sold out in no-time though.

What is the name of the app?  It sounds promising.

Too good to go.

Started in Denmark and it's now available in more countries, not sure if it's available in the US yet though!

I picked up leftover groceries from the organic store and sushi from a new restaurant yesterday. A massive (45cm) organic bread, two types of yoghurt, vegan fish fingers and 8 1/2 rolls of sushi for the grand total of €8.

The only downside to the app is they sell out so quickly... It's really popular in my city.

That sounds awesome! I have checked the app several times but it's always sold out :(. I've seen one of the bakeries that still had sth available once, but I thought I'd be getting too much for myself to finish as I don't have much freezer space and don't wanna eat bread 24/7 for 2 days straight :p. So for now I deleted the app again, guess I will retry in a few months.

I try to go for the grocery boxes (from Jumbo and Ekoplaza) . They can contain anything fresh - veggies, dairy, bread, salads, juice etc. I haven't received meat/fish yet but those could definitely be included. I think the bakery boxes are great if you have a big family or a lot of roommates but they are probably not that suitable for singles/couples. They can contain several breads or bags of bread rolls but I've also heard about people getting an entire cake or a lot of pastries or donuts.

The sushi was a first and was a success - more than enough for a single meal and cost €5. I've been trying to get a meal from a great local Italian deli but no luck so far.

jengod

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1219
  • Location: Near LAX
What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1253 on: April 21, 2019, 02:43:13 PM »
Used the human-powered reel lawn mower to cut the grass in the front yard yesterday.

Will try to do the backyard today; I was away for a week and everything is very overgrown.

My favorite part of using the reel mower is the “grasscycling” — the lawn clipping and shredded leaves go right back into the soil.

Going to look into buying an old-fashioned manual lawn edger. Carbon-zero lawn care.
« Last Edit: April 21, 2019, 02:46:55 PM by jengod »

mustachepungoeshere

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2405
  • Location: Sydney, Oz
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1254 on: April 22, 2019, 05:18:27 AM »
Went out for dinner with family tonight.

I knew the place we were going served sizeable portions, so I took a glass Decor container with me to a) save the rest of my meal for lunch tomorrow, and b) avoid having to ask for a plastic takeaway container.

As delicious as my pasta was, having the container in my bag strengthened my resolve to only eat half my meal. Great for portion control!

TrMama

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3367
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1255 on: April 22, 2019, 10:34:08 AM »
Did some sewing this weekend. Managed to make a new workout shirt from some tiny scraps that I was otherwise going to throw out. Finished another t-shirt where the neckline turned out weird so it's rescued from the scrap heap too. Also, repaired a hole in a wool t-shirt so it can go on keeping me warm in winter.

AND the thing I'm most proud of is that I repaired my neoprene bike shoe covers. I've used them so much the bottoms were getting shredded. But now they're patched and have new elastic on the bottom openings so they should be good for at least another 5K km.

The grass is growing like crazy in my backyard, so that's basically all our guinea pigs have been eating for the past couple weeks. I like having all that free pet food available.

Discovered I actually quite like tempeh, although neither of the kids liked it. I'll probably try again with some different seasonings.

TrMama

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3367
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1256 on: April 23, 2019, 09:51:12 AM »
Did some sewing this weekend. Managed to make a new workout shirt from some tiny scraps that I was otherwise going to throw out. Finished another t-shirt where the neckline turned out weird so it's rescued from the scrap heap too. Also, repaired a hole in a wool t-shirt so it can go on keeping me warm in winter.

AND the thing I'm most proud of is that I repaired my neoprene bike shoe covers. I've used them so much the bottoms were getting shredded. But now they're patched and have new elastic on the bottom openings so they should be good for at least another 5K km.

The grass is growing like crazy in my backyard, so that's basically all our guinea pigs have been eating for the past couple weeks. I like having all that free pet food available.

Discovered I actually quite like tempeh, although neither of the kids liked it. I'll probably try again with some different seasonings.

An impressive list.  I tried the tempeh with the kids and had a similar experience.  I haven't found yet that I love it either so I'll try it a few different ways.  I used to poo poo tofu but now I eat it regularly so who knows!?

I'm thinking of chopping it up fairly finely and adding taco seasoning. Kind of a ground beef alternative for tacos. Or possibly a sweet BBQ glaze. I made this recipe, https://www.budgetbytes.com/sesame-tempeh-bowls/, and I suspect it was the glaze they didn't care for. I also think I should have simmered it in water longer so it didn't have such a dry texture.

My kids think they don't like tofu, but I sneak it into homemade egg rolls (along with mushrooms, which they also claim not to like) and it's one of their favorite meals.

GuitarStv

  • Senior Mustachian
  • ********
  • Posts: 15860
  • Age: 39
  • Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1257 on: April 23, 2019, 02:44:29 PM »
All the people I've met in life who "didn't like mushrooms" were failing to eat mushrooms fried in butter.

Anatidae V

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7609
  • Age: 31
  • Location: Fourecks
  • Nullus Anxietas
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1258 on: April 24, 2019, 01:02:29 AM »
I decluttered and organised the study today so that we use the things we own instead of buying new things, e.g. empty notebooks.

I also made a skirt yesterday from scrap fabric that would otherwise have gone in the bin, so that I could test a new pattern. It worked so well I'll be wearing the skirt a lot!

londonbanker

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 237
  • Age: 40
  • Location: London, UK
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1259 on: April 24, 2019, 02:37:55 PM »
Finally decided to get off my back side and upgrade all my 68 GU10 halogen light to GU10 LED ones. Took me a whole afternoon - but will hopefully be saving a lot over the next few years and lower my environmental footprint at the same time

Frugal Lizard

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2715
  • Age: 53
  • Location: Southwest Ontario
  • One foot in front of the other....
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1260 on: April 30, 2019, 07:18:03 AM »
Instead of vac'ing the whole house, I dusted using the swiffer with an old diaper on it.  I bought a swiffer ages ago and stopped using it when I ran out of the disposable clothes that came with it.  I recently started using it again with old rags.  The rags pick up a ton of cat hair.  I have been hanging the rags on the clothes line for rinsing off most of the cat hair before washing them and repeating the process.

horsepoor

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3360
  • Location: At the Barn
  • Horses: for sanity & poverty!
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1261 on: April 30, 2019, 08:06:06 AM »
I am hand-weeding our property.  There are areas where it's very tempting to use herbicide, but I won't.  Many of the weeds are being fed to the chickens, and most of the rest composted.  I try to keep my xeriscape looking nice in the hopes that it might inspire neighbors to at least replace some of their thirstier landscaping, instead of being the yard they point at to say "but xeriscape is ugly!"

My patch of native wheatgrass is reproducing like crazy, so even though we've used mostly lower-water landscaping than the norm, I'm digging up these grasses and spreading them out to replace plants that needed more supplemental water.  Some of my native flowering plants are also reproducing, and that means better habitat for pollinators.  Made sure not to dig up any of my resprouting milkweeds, though one that planted itself in the veggie bed needs to be moved.

Yesterday I mentioned to a co-worker that the giant Styrofoam cup she gets from Sonic every day would be great for potting up my seedlings and she said she would start saving them for me.  Of course it would be better if she didn't get them at all, but she said her tea "tastes weird" in her hydroflask.  At least she has a reusable straw?

TrMama

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3367
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1262 on: April 30, 2019, 12:32:52 PM »
I seem to have my sewing mojo back. I sewed up a pair of work pants from some fabric I'd bought ages ago. Saved me from buying a readymade pair. I also sewed more produce/bulk bags from my old sheet collection.

Made a veggie pot pie last night and threw in some tempeh chopped into smallish pieces. Hopefully the kids will eat it this way. The small amount I tasted last night was delicious.

Overall our meat consumption is way down since my 12yo decided to go vegetarian. I'm only cooking meat a couple times/week.

mustachepungoeshere

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2405
  • Location: Sydney, Oz
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1263 on: April 30, 2019, 07:01:34 PM »
@marty998 and I are catching up over noodles after work tonight. I've packed chopsticks from home rather than use disposable ones.

mominca

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1264 on: May 01, 2019, 10:31:29 AM »

I knew the place we were going served sizeable portions, so I took a glass Decor container with me to a) save the rest of my meal for lunch tomorrow, and b) avoid having to ask for a plastic takeaway container.


I love this idea! We don't eat out much, but I hate coming home with to go boxes. If we ever do get take out I make sure they don't pack the forks/chopsticks/napkins etc.

I buy all my son's toys used when possible- even lego sets. He's been using the same lunch sack for 4 years, even though it looks ratty it is still functional and he hasn't complained. I use resusable food bags and containers in his lunch and never buy individually packaged applesauce etc. 

gatortator

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 227
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1265 on: May 01, 2019, 11:14:01 AM »
I gave up meat for lent and my family, by default, went on a low meat diet.  I knew going into this that tofu based meals were not an option but navy beans, garbanzos, black beans, pintos and limited lentils were ok.  What I discovered over the 6 weeks
  • Both of my kids really liked tempeh stir-fry.  I made it multiple times and both happily ate it.
  • Neither was fond of the Trader Joes vegan chorizo-- just a little too spicy
  • However both loved the soy beef product we found at Winco.  especially in sloppy joes-- they liked it better than the regular version

This is the first I have really ever been a short order cook (cooking different meals for different people).  I really did not like that aspect and I will need to think about this if I choose to continue this experiment next year. 

I'm a red panda

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8048
  • Location: United States
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1266 on: May 01, 2019, 12:12:08 PM »
Well, it wasn't something we've done today- but with the weather getting sunnier, it's finally paying off.

Our electric bill was $11.74 this month. There is a $13.50 monthly admin fee. Which means our solar panels produced more than 100% of the electricity we used in the month. :)

marty998

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6928
  • Location: Sydney, Oz
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1267 on: May 02, 2019, 01:36:49 AM »
@marty998 and I are catching up over noodles after work tonight. I've packed chopsticks from home rather than use disposable ones.

You also took the plastic scoop spoons so we don't have to get new ones next time!

mustachepungoeshere

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2405
  • Location: Sydney, Oz
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1268 on: May 02, 2019, 04:02:53 AM »
@marty998 and I are catching up over noodles after work tonight. I've packed chopsticks from home rather than use disposable ones.

You also took the plastic scoop spoons so we don't have to get new ones next time!

And you brought water in a re-usable bottle. :)

mountain mustache

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 482
  • Age: 29
  • Location: Colorado
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1269 on: May 02, 2019, 08:06:03 AM »
biked to work, bike home for lunch, biked back to work and then home. Ate leftovers that I really didn't want to eat. Made a dinner completely out of ingredients from my deep freezer.

Dollar Slice

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5762
  • Age: 43
  • Location: New York City
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1270 on: May 02, 2019, 07:54:39 PM »
Environmentally-minded Mother's Day gift - I got my mom a box of pretty paper straws (eco-friendly/biodegradable) to carry in her purse to use in restaurants instead of plastic straws after she mentioned seeing them in a store. My parents are big-time restaurant-goers so that should definitely keep some plastic out of the landfill. And maybe her friends will see them and think it's a good idea.

Maybe after she uses up the box we'll graduate to a reusable straw. I wish restaurants would do something like grocery stores do when you bring your own bag - all of the ones I go to give you a five cent credit for your own bag. You could get a five cent credit on bringing your own straw and all the cheapskates would get reusable ones. ;-)

mustachepungoeshere

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2405
  • Location: Sydney, Oz
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1271 on: May 03, 2019, 02:54:00 AM »
Brought home soft plastics from work to recycle through Woolies.

londonbanker

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 237
  • Age: 40
  • Location: London, UK
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1272 on: May 03, 2019, 02:59:22 AM »
In Paris for business today... decided to take the train back to London and instead of flying, and I didn’t take a taxi from my hotel to the train station, but decided to hop on a Lime electric scooter instead... side benefit- I probably saved £20 in taxi fare

Frugal Lizard

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2715
  • Age: 53
  • Location: Southwest Ontario
  • One foot in front of the other....
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1273 on: May 03, 2019, 05:03:19 AM »
I walked the 2.2km to the train yesterday morning.  My son and my hubs biked to school and work. 

Imma

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2390
  • Location: Europe
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1274 on: May 03, 2019, 07:44:20 AM »
I downloaded an app against food waste, where you can buy leftover fresh products from several supermarkets, hotels and bakeries in the area. So far both yesterday and today everything seemed sold out in no-time though.

What is the name of the app?  It sounds promising.

Too good to go.

Started in Denmark and it's now available in more countries, not sure if it's available in the US yet though!

I picked up leftover groceries from the organic store and sushi from a new restaurant yesterday. A massive (45cm) organic bread, two types of yoghurt, vegan fish fingers and 8 1/2 rolls of sushi for the grand total of €8.

The only downside to the app is they sell out so quickly... It's really popular in my city.

That sounds awesome! I have checked the app several times but it's always sold out :(. I've seen one of the bakeries that still had sth available once, but I thought I'd be getting too much for myself to finish as I don't have much freezer space and don't wanna eat bread 24/7 for 2 days straight :p. So for now I deleted the app again, guess I will retry in a few months.

Found another good deal on the app. On my way home I pass by a place that sells sandwiches, pastries, fresh juices etc. I'm picking up a surprise box there today after work for €3. We will eat it for brunch tomorrow. We're totally out of groceries and energy so this will be fairly cheap for a fancy brunch + also easier + we avoid food waste. We aren't picky eaters so I'm sure we'll like whatever we receive.

I will make nice coffee and set the table nicely and maybe add some fruit or a boiled egg if the amount isn't enough. I've never picked up from this place before but usually the portions are pretty generous.

horsepoor

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3360
  • Location: At the Barn
  • Horses: for sanity & poverty!
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1275 on: May 03, 2019, 07:49:08 AM »
Teleworking this morning instead of driving to the office. 

Continued my crusade to hand-weed the front yard last night, and almost finished, except for a patch of recalcitrant grass.


Bracken_Joy

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8926
  • Location: Oregon
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1276 on: May 03, 2019, 07:52:03 AM »
-Now that my food aversions have been improving, my produce waste has dropped substantially.
-We've always prioritized local foods, but given the insane prices at our nearest grocery store, we were doing fewer organic options for a while. Well, since switching a lot of our shopping to a different store (which we also walk to!), we've been able to do more local and organic produce again.
-Finally found and set up with our new ranch up here, so we've got a freezer full again of local, organic, grass fed beef. This is good, as I wasn't about to drive nearly 3 hours to our former farm!
-Between scraps going to the dog's food, and the municipal compost service, we've had virtually no food products go in the trash. We just need to get better at remembering that meat scrap and bone CAN go into the compost, and that paper towels can go in too!

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5057
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1277 on: May 03, 2019, 02:29:07 PM »
-Now that my food aversions have been improving, my produce waste has dropped substantially.
-We've always prioritized local foods, but given the insane prices at our nearest grocery store, we were doing fewer organic options for a while. Well, since switching a lot of our shopping to a different store (which we also walk to!), we've been able to do more local and organic produce again.
-Finally found and set up with our new ranch up here, so we've got a freezer full again of local, organic, grass fed beef. This is good, as I wasn't about to drive nearly 3 hours to our former farm!
-Between scraps going to the dog's food, and the municipal compost service, we've had virtually no food products go in the trash. We just need to get better at remembering that meat scrap and bone CAN go into the compost, and that paper towels can go in too!

I am working at retraining my family! I have been fishing banana peels and paper towels out of the trash.

It was yesterday, not today, but I cut my grass with our push mower.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5057
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1278 on: May 05, 2019, 01:46:49 PM »
Biked to work today!

Yesterday the kids and I biked to Big Brother's soccer game, about 2 miles away. My husband doesn't have a bike (!), but he walked there and back.

Anatidae V

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7609
  • Age: 31
  • Location: Fourecks
  • Nullus Anxietas
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1279 on: May 07, 2019, 01:55:30 AM »
I signed up for a birdwatching app with a government run (or sponsored?) nature group so that I can help count birds!

I've also been taking the bus instead of car for the last leg of my commute, mowing with the reel mower and weed pulling by hand- which I only thought of because of the great work by everyone else!

TrMama

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3367
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1280 on: May 07, 2019, 09:47:22 AM »
Found a free composter on the side of the road yesterday. Score! This means we'll now have two so I can fill one up while the other one cooks.

Poundwise

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1589
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1281 on: May 12, 2019, 04:06:54 AM »
Just stayed at home and DID NOTHING. Went nowhere, bought nothing, just used what we had on hand.

And it was good.

imadandylion

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 197
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1282 on: May 12, 2019, 05:52:06 PM »
Tried to buy as much fresh food in the grocery store without plastic packaging. It wasn't perfect though because I got tempeh and tofu. They do sell tofu in the bulk section so I could bring my own container next time, but I dont see myself making tempeh at home anytime soon. Then again, I never looked up how to do it, so it could possibly be quite easy. Skipped getting any seaweed too even though I love it because I always feel really bad about the packaging waste.

MonkeyJenga

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8749
  • Location: the woods
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1283 on: May 12, 2019, 06:19:18 PM »
-Between scraps going to the dog's food, and the municipal compost service, we've had virtually no food products go in the trash. We just need to get better at remembering that meat scrap and bone CAN go into the compost, and that paper towels can go in too!

I'm glad I dropped in here when I did. I didn't know paper towels could be composted!

In that vein, I have greatly reduced my use of paper towels and napkins. I got a bunch of hand towels from buy nothing, so I use those for napkins and cleaning.

Today I took public transit to wander around some trees. Brought trail mix from the bulk bin and a reusable water bottle. Composted vegetable ends after making soup.

To do:
* Always carry a couple reusable bags for last minute produce buys - everything goes in my backpack, so I've been throwing all the produce in one plastic bag to keep my backpack from getting gross.
* Figure out how to get the weight subtracted from reusable containers so I can fill them up directly from the bulk bins. At Fred Meyer I might be able to have them weighed at customer service, but looks like it differs by store.  https://amp.reddit.com/r/ZeroWaste/comments/aifx2x/bulk_containers_and_kroger_qfc_fred_meyer/

Bracken_Joy

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8926
  • Location: Oregon
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1284 on: May 13, 2019, 08:34:59 AM »
-Between scraps going to the dog's food, and the municipal compost service, we've had virtually no food products go in the trash. We just need to get better at remembering that meat scrap and bone CAN go into the compost, and that paper towels can go in too!

I'm glad I dropped in here when I did. I didn't know paper towels could be composted!

In that vein, I have greatly reduced my use of paper towels and napkins. I got a bunch of hand towels from buy nothing, so I use those for napkins and cleaning.

Today I took public transit to wander around some trees. Brought trail mix from the bulk bin and a reusable water bottle. Composted vegetable ends after making soup.

To do:
* Always carry a couple reusable bags for last minute produce buys - everything goes in my backpack, so I've been throwing all the produce in one plastic bag to keep my backpack from getting gross.
* Figure out how to get the weight subtracted from reusable containers so I can fill them up directly from the bulk bins. At Fred Meyer I might be able to have them weighed at customer service, but looks like it differs by store.  https://amp.reddit.com/r/ZeroWaste/comments/aifx2x/bulk_containers_and_kroger_qfc_fred_meyer/

I'm not sure about back yard bins! I just know what the municipal guidelines are (very broad). Not sure if your house has the green bin, but if so, here's what you can compost: http://wmnorthwest.com/portland/guidelines/yarddebris.htm
I've done the resusable containers before. Always found people to be amenable to labels with the weights on the side. I'd just use tape and write in marker "tare: x.xx lb" for example. BUT, be sure to watch. A lot of places are "too busy" to do the tare weight unless you ask. Drives me bonkers. The weight is clearly on all our reusable produce bags, but people still skip it like 75% of the time, even at the fancy stores. Arghhh.

bacchi

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4637
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1285 on: May 13, 2019, 09:43:08 AM »
Environmentally-minded Mother's Day gift - I got my mom a box of pretty paper straws (eco-friendly/biodegradable) to carry in her purse to use in restaurants instead of plastic straws after she mentioned seeing them in a store. My parents are big-time restaurant-goers so that should definitely keep some plastic out of the landfill. And maybe her friends will see them and think it's a good idea.

Maybe after she uses up the box we'll graduate to a reusable straw. I wish restaurants would do something like grocery stores do when you bring your own bag - all of the ones I go to give you a five cent credit for your own bag. You could get a five cent credit on bringing your own straw and all the cheapskates would get reusable ones. ;-)

We've started telling servers that we don't need straws. It's hard to remember.

We also bring a container for leftovers. No more single-use leftover containers from the restaurant.

MonkeyJenga

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8749
  • Location: the woods
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1286 on: May 13, 2019, 10:43:22 AM »
-Between scraps going to the dog's food, and the municipal compost service, we've had virtually no food products go in the trash. We just need to get better at remembering that meat scrap and bone CAN go into the compost, and that paper towels can go in too!

I'm glad I dropped in here when I did. I didn't know paper towels could be composted!

In that vein, I have greatly reduced my use of paper towels and napkins. I got a bunch of hand towels from buy nothing, so I use those for napkins and cleaning.

Today I took public transit to wander around some trees. Brought trail mix from the bulk bin and a reusable water bottle. Composted vegetable ends after making soup.

To do:
* Always carry a couple reusable bags for last minute produce buys - everything goes in my backpack, so I've been throwing all the produce in one plastic bag to keep my backpack from getting gross.
* Figure out how to get the weight subtracted from reusable containers so I can fill them up directly from the bulk bins. At Fred Meyer I might be able to have them weighed at customer service, but looks like it differs by store.  https://amp.reddit.com/r/ZeroWaste/comments/aifx2x/bulk_containers_and_kroger_qfc_fred_meyer/

I'm not sure about back yard bins! I just know what the municipal guidelines are (very broad). Not sure if your house has the green bin, but if so, here's what you can compost: http://wmnorthwest.com/portland/guidelines/yarddebris.htm
I've done the resusable containers before. Always found people to be amenable to labels with the weights on the side. I'd just use tape and write in marker "tare: x.xx lb" for example. BUT, be sure to watch. A lot of places are "too busy" to do the tare weight unless you ask. Drives me bonkers. The weight is clearly on all our reusable produce bags, but people still skip it like 75% of the time, even at the fancy stores. Arghhh.

Thanks for the link! We have a green bin, so I'm good.

I stopped by my main grocery store yesterday and asked about tares. Officially, no. Unofficially, many cashiers will do it if I label the containers. I'll try with one, to test it. In the meantime I can reuse the baggies I already have.

Oh! Hung my laundry to dry instead of using the dryer. I am running out of hangers, might hit up buy nothing.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2019, 10:45:00 AM by MonkeyJenga »

nessness

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 449
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1287 on: May 13, 2019, 04:38:58 PM »
I had a good talk with my 4-year-old this morning on climate change and reducing our environmental impact, or, as she calls it, "helping the world." I was surprised by how much she seemed to understand. No immediate benefits I guess, but I'm hoping that starting these lessons young will lead to long-term benefits.

TrMama

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3367
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1288 on: May 14, 2019, 12:10:14 PM »
I compost paper towels, napkins and other low grade papers in my backyard composter as long as they don't have oil, meat, cleaners or cooked food on them. Oil, meat and cooked things will attract rats. Cleaners are obviously not good for the soil.

Today I was able to redirect a huge pile of gently used binders from my office to my kids school. Our accounting lady had been told to just put them in the trash. She's thrilled that they won't be going in the trash and the school staff are thrilled to have a pile of free binders they otherwise would've had to buy. Win win.

I'll move them tomorrow when I was going to have to drive to pick up the kids from school anyway. Bike commuted today.

I don't bother asking for the tare weight to be removed from my produce bags. On their own they're pretty light and anything I buy by the pound we seem to eat in large quantities so it doesn't seem worth it. Most produce I buy is sold by the unit anyway, so the weight is irrelevant.

Frugal Lizard

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2715
  • Age: 53
  • Location: Southwest Ontario
  • One foot in front of the other....
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1289 on: May 14, 2019, 06:54:42 PM »
I took my steel straw, cutlery, cloth napkin and thermos bottle.  I didn't feel at all strange pulling them out at the work luncheon.

I also took public transit.

MonkeyJenga

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8749
  • Location: the woods
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1290 on: May 14, 2019, 07:20:36 PM »
* Took public transit to do boring adult things.
* Wore clothes that I got from Buy Nothing.
* Brought my water bottle.
* Got a library card, so I can check out ebooks on my secondhand nook.
* Bought mostly vegetables with minimal packaging at the grocery store, and reused produce bags. I usually buy bagged salad and little tomatoes in those plastic boxes, so this is a big step.
* Brought my bulk bin bags to reuse.
* Avoided/forgot to buy quorn. It's better than meat, but it's got a ton of packaging..

pbkmaine

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8279
  • Age: 63
  • Location: The Villages, Florida
What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1291 on: May 14, 2019, 08:38:57 PM »
* Took public transit to do boring adult things.
* Wore clothes that I got from Buy Nothing.
* Brought my water bottle.
* Got a library card, so I can check out ebooks on my secondhand nook.
* Bought mostly vegetables with minimal packaging at the grocery store, and reused produce bags. I usually buy bagged salad and little tomatoes in those plastic boxes, so this is a big step.
* Brought my bulk bin bags to reuse.
* Avoided/forgot to buy quorn. It's better than meat, but it's got a ton of packaging..

If you’re okay with cutting down on meat, try adding TVP (texturized vegetable protein) to ground beef:

https://www.geniuskitchen.com/recipe/ground-beef-tvp-lots-o-meat-442209

The recipe above calls for very lean ground beef, but I have done this with regular ground beef. The mix ends up being lean anyway since the TVP has very little fat.
« Last Edit: May 14, 2019, 08:41:58 PM by pbkmaine »

MonkeyJenga

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8749
  • Location: the woods
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1292 on: May 14, 2019, 08:44:39 PM »
* Took public transit to do boring adult things.
* Wore clothes that I got from Buy Nothing.
* Brought my water bottle.
* Got a library card, so I can check out ebooks on my secondhand nook.
* Bought mostly vegetables with minimal packaging at the grocery store, and reused produce bags. I usually buy bagged salad and little tomatoes in those plastic boxes, so this is a big step.
* Brought my bulk bin bags to reuse.
* Avoided/forgot to buy quorn. It's better than meat, but it's got a ton of packaging..

If you’re okay with cutting down on meat, try adding TVP (texturized vegetable protein) to ground beef:

https://www.geniuskitchen.com/recipe/ground-beef-tvp-lots-o-meat-442209

The recipe above calls for very lean ground beef, but I have done this with regular ground beef. The mix ends up being lean anyway since the TVP has very little fat.
Ah, yes, I have heard tell of TVP. I don't even buy ground beef, but I might check this out. TVP and nutritional yeast it up (once I use up my real cheese).

Dollar Slice

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5762
  • Age: 43
  • Location: New York City
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1293 on: May 14, 2019, 09:03:57 PM »
* Bought mostly vegetables with minimal packaging at the grocery store, and reused produce bags. I usually buy bagged salad and little tomatoes in those plastic boxes, so this is a big step.

It is a big pet peeve of mine that it's almost impossible to buy cherry/grape tomatoes in anything but a plastic box. I basically never eat them for that reason...

I just got home from the grocery store where I failed to purchase tomatoes (in plastic boxes), cucumbers (wrapped in plastic), and lettuce (wrapped in plastic) even though they were on my list. I'm going to make an orzo salad with some veggies that didn't come in plastic instead of the salad I was planning. (The orzo did, unfortunately, come in plastic. But I never see pasta without packaging.)

nessness

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 449
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1294 on: May 15, 2019, 09:31:54 AM »
* Bought mostly vegetables with minimal packaging at the grocery store, and reused produce bags. I usually buy bagged salad and little tomatoes in those plastic boxes, so this is a big step.

It is a big pet peeve of mine that it's almost impossible to buy cherry/grape tomatoes in anything but a plastic box. I basically never eat them for that reason...

I just got home from the grocery store where I failed to purchase tomatoes (in plastic boxes), cucumbers (wrapped in plastic), and lettuce (wrapped in plastic) even though they were on my list. I'm going to make an orzo salad with some veggies that didn't come in plastic instead of the salad I was planning. (The orzo did, unfortunately, come in plastic. But I never see pasta without packaging.)
I see that you're in NYC, but if you have any outdoor space at all, cherry tomatoes are easy to grow and very prolific.

PMG

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1819
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1295 on: May 15, 2019, 11:26:31 AM »
unintentional success.

We started asking around about some abandoned community garden beds, and not only got permission to use some, but inspired another person to plant some veggies.

We've also been asking around about bikes, we'd like to purchase two second hand. Two different people have said "Oh, yeah I have a bike in my basement, I'll dig it out and you can look at it."  Both of those people declined to sell after they got their bikes out and have since been posting photos on social media of them out riding! 



Fresh Bread

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2052
  • Location: Australia
  • Insert dough/bread/crust joke
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1296 on: May 15, 2019, 04:49:41 PM »
About veggies and pasta - here in Aus we have a pasta brand called Barilla that comes in a card box with a small plastic window. Maybe you can find a brand like that? All the others come in plastic here too.

We also get telegraph cucumbers in plastic (otherwise they only keep a few days apparently) but luckily the Lebanese variety seem to store better and we can get them uncovered. The Lebanese are what we grow in our gardens here so I expect they aren't available in New York!

MonkeyJenga

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8749
  • Location: the woods
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1297 on: May 15, 2019, 05:08:23 PM »
* Bought mostly vegetables with minimal packaging at the grocery store, and reused produce bags. I usually buy bagged salad and little tomatoes in those plastic boxes, so this is a big step.

It is a big pet peeve of mine that it's almost impossible to buy cherry/grape tomatoes in anything but a plastic box. I basically never eat them for that reason...

I just got home from the grocery store where I failed to purchase tomatoes (in plastic boxes), cucumbers (wrapped in plastic), and lettuce (wrapped in plastic) even though they were on my list. I'm going to make an orzo salad with some veggies that didn't come in plastic instead of the salad I was planning. (The orzo did, unfortunately, come in plastic. But I never see pasta without packaging.)

Some stores have bulk pasta. Whole Foods has rice and pasta, not sure which other ones in NYC do.

@Fresh Bread - cardboard boxes for pasta is standard here. Plastic is used for some brands, usually specialty.

I think I'm going to switch to rice anyway. I got a giant bag for free, and it's easier to find in bulk bins. Every time I eat pasta, I end up overeating and feeling kind of sick.

Dollar Slice

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5762
  • Age: 43
  • Location: New York City
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1298 on: May 15, 2019, 05:24:19 PM »
I generally eat whole wheat pasta, which means there's a lot less choice in stores (at least in my neighborhood - Harlem grocery shopping isn't always great for health food). There was only one brand of whole wheat orzo and it was in plastic. I considered couscous instead for a recipe substitute, but the only ones I could find were either in plastic or in those tiny boxes with flavor mixes. I figured one plastic bag is better than four boxes of couscous containing four separate 'flavor packets'.

I never thought to look in the WF bulk bins for pasta... I'll see what they have next time I stop in there.

(And to nessness - I have zero access to outdoor space for growing plants, unfortunately. I was looking into maybe a potted-plant cherry tomato option but they put up scaffolding on my building so I haven't even had a sunny window for the last 11 months! Luckily there is a farmer's market so I can get good tomatoes plastic-free for a couple of months a year when they're growing locally.)

MonkeyJenga

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8749
  • Location: the woods
Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1299 on: May 15, 2019, 05:48:10 PM »
Dollar, might be worth checking out Organic Forever too if it's near you. Probably expensive but you never know. https://www.litterless.com/bulk-food-guide/new-york