Author Topic: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?  (Read 174785 times)

Bracken_Joy

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1050 on: November 14, 2018, 07:12:42 AM »
Signed up for imperfect produce. Got my first box, and I'm quite pleased- I was worried about the level of packaging, but it turns out they just put everything free for all inside the cardboard box.

I haven't taken the car out for several days. We walked for groceries over the weekend (half a mile) and that will be easily sustainable for us. Also walked for a little dinner date yesterday. I'm glad to be back to a walkable area.

We haven't needed to turn the heat on in our apartment a single time. There's a gym below us, so I'm assuming that generates enough heat? Plus the building is concrete construction, so I'm sure that serves as a heat sink. As long as I can suffer through a little morning cold, the huge south facing windows heat the place pretty quickly once the sun comes up. It's nice too, since it'll be so much higher in summer, the sunshine won't shine into the unit as directly for spring/summer, so that will help temper it (plus we have shades).

Now that we have to take the dog out on a leash for every potty trip, the poo bags we have matter far more. Glad I sprung for the best 'eco' option I could find at the time. Anyone want to help with research and make sure I have the most optimal solution though? Obvs when we had a yard, we used a scoop pan periodically and disposed that way.

Fresh Bread

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1051 on: November 14, 2018, 01:18:11 PM »
Now that we have to take the dog out on a leash for every potty trip, the poo bags we have matter far more. Glad I sprung for the best 'eco' option I could find at the time. Anyone want to help with research and make sure I have the most optimal solution though? Obvs when we had a yard, we used a scoop pan periodically and disposed that way.

So, the thing is, every time you put something compostable in landfill it will rot in sealed conditions and create the greenhouse gas methane. So using composting bags and putting them in landfill could be equally as bad as using plastic bags. I think if you need to use a bin and bags, the best thing to do is repurpose bags eg from bread, frozen veg etc.

There are solutions like a worm farm but then you've got to find somewhere to put the output (can't be on edibles plants)!

For people with yards the best thing to do is make an in-ground worm farm (a hole or sunken bottomless bucket with a lid).

smalllife

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1052 on: November 14, 2018, 01:47:09 PM »
Now that we have to take the dog out on a leash for every potty trip, the poo bags we have matter far more. Glad I sprung for the best 'eco' option I could find at the time. Anyone want to help with research and make sure I have the most optimal solution though? Obvs when we had a yard, we used a scoop pan periodically and disposed that way.

Find someone who gets a physical newspaper and become buddies.  The newspaper bags are perfect doggie bags, and are already produced and likely to be thrown away (and recycling that plastic isn't all that effective).   Mine come from two degrees of separation - a coworkers' spouse's coworker.

Pro tip: fold them to save space ;-)

BlueMR2

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1053 on: November 17, 2018, 10:12:31 AM »
Insulated the garage door windows.  Then installed casing and caulked around the garage (wall) window.  Next replaced the old translucent plastic curtain from that window with a tighter fitting light blocking blind. 

Should give us a little better thermal insulation overall and I've already confirmed it *dramatically* reduces our light pollution when I'm working in the garage at night!

Anatidae V

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1054 on: November 20, 2018, 05:49:18 AM »
Now that we have to take the dog out on a leash for every potty trip, the poo bags we have matter far more. Glad I sprung for the best 'eco' option I could find at the time. Anyone want to help with research and make sure I have the most optimal solution though? Obvs when we had a yard, we used a scoop pan periodically and disposed that way.

So, the thing is, every time you put something compostable in landfill it will rot in sealed conditions and create the greenhouse gas methane. So using composting bags and putting them in landfill could be equally as bad as using plastic bags. I think if you need to use a bin and bags, the best thing to do is repurpose bags eg from bread, frozen veg etc.

There are solutions like a worm farm but then you've got to find somewhere to put the output (can't be on edibles plants)!

For people with yards the best thing to do is make an in-ground worm farm (a hole or sunken bottomless bucket with a lid).
Unless your landfill burns off the methane to generate power? That will depend on the landfill, of course.

Anatidae V

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1055 on: November 20, 2018, 05:50:27 AM »
Today we ate a vegan meal for dinner, soy garlic tofu with rice. Started up meal/eating planning again this week to reduce our food waste.

Hirondelle

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1056 on: November 20, 2018, 06:05:54 AM »
Skipped my morning coffee and drank tea instead. Also didn't get take-out coffee when I had a long commute yesterday morning (traveled to a collaborator). Also commuted by train ofcourse :)

Poundwise

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1057 on: November 24, 2018, 09:56:18 PM »
Got the kids to enjoy some veggie burgers. I've been trying to introduce more meatless dishes into our menus; hard when all the kids are nasty little carnivores but we've been making slow progress.

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1058 on: November 24, 2018, 10:42:13 PM »
Meal planned for next week. Our food waste this week was far lower than it has been for a while, so I'm hoping next week works well too.

Fishindude

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1059 on: November 25, 2018, 10:47:19 AM »
I think we are going to get a replantable Christmas tree, rather than a cut tree.   I'll plant it in the yard somewhere after the holidays.
For the cost of the stupid thing I could probably buy 100 seedlings and plant them but ...........

Bracken_Joy

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1060 on: November 25, 2018, 11:00:11 AM »
Our apartment building has compost! Ordered a bin and liners. A substantial amount of our trash on a day to day basis is coffee grounds and veg scraps, so this will be excellent.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1061 on: November 25, 2018, 01:23:19 PM »
I forgot my lunch at home. Turns out the work fridge is full of leftovers and I can save my lunch for another day(it was in the freezer), while today I can help reduce food waste!

Frugal Lizard

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1062 on: November 25, 2018, 05:08:44 PM »
Walked to church this morning.  Used up a bunch of leftovers in a soup that was our dinner.

jengod

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1063 on: November 25, 2018, 10:16:57 PM »
* cargo biked to the grocery store and back

* harvested tangerines from our tree for a snack

* composted eggshells, coffee grounds, yard pruning, fallen leaves, etc.

* spread free wood chips on our parking strip, this will ultimately prevent erosion and will slowly fertilize our big street tree

BlueMR2

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1064 on: November 26, 2018, 04:52:00 PM »
Biked to the bike shop to pick up parts for my spare bike.  :-)  It was a little awkward riding home carrying the tires though...

Linea_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1065 on: November 27, 2018, 05:49:00 AM »
Walk to work and will walk back in the afternoon. Both in the dark (darkest time of the year).

OtherJen

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1066 on: November 29, 2018, 07:23:17 PM »
Managed to work a couple pounds of sprouting potatoes, a slightly wilted bell pepper and the last of a carton of heavy cream into tonight's dinner. I hate wasting food, so this was a win.

Poundwise

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1067 on: November 29, 2018, 08:55:58 PM »
I took a chance and ordered from a new service that delivers odd shaped and imperfect produce that would otherwise be thrown away, or so they say.  The produce was very nice and there was plenty of it!  I think it was a good deal: with coupon I paid only $30 for a full box of organic produce, which seems to be comparable or better to what I'd pay in a farmer's market, plus it was delivered.  I usually don't feel I can afford organic, so this was a chance for me to get in on that action too.

Fresh Bread

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1068 on: November 29, 2018, 08:58:01 PM »
I took a chance and ordered from a new service that delivers odd shaped and imperfect produce that would otherwise be thrown away, or so they say.  The produce was very nice and there was plenty of it!  I think it was a good deal: with coupon I paid only $30 for a full box of organic produce, which seems to be comparable or better to what I'd pay in a farmer's market, plus it was delivered.  I usually don't feel I can afford organic, so this was a chance for me to get in on that action too.

This sounds great. Here in Australia there is a new app called farm to foodie which might help farm waste by selling fruit & veg the supermarkets won't take. Must remember to look into it.

Poundwise

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1069 on: December 06, 2018, 08:32:15 PM »
Yes, it's a great idea for such as me... We don't eat enough vegetables, we're too cheap to buy organic often, we don't belong to a CSA already, and we seldom go to farmers markets.  But if you already buy from small farmers/CSAs, it's better to support them.  Expecting my next box tomorrow... can't believe I'm looking forward to a box of vegetable seconds but I am!

Linea_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1070 on: December 07, 2018, 04:25:19 AM »
Cleaned the snow manually instead of using the noisy snowblower.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1071 on: December 11, 2018, 09:25:29 AM »
signed up for the one tonne challenge on 1 million women. 

making beeswax infused cotton wraps for my large lidless casserole dishes and all my various sized bowls.

Anatidae V

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1072 on: December 12, 2018, 05:34:06 AM »
Cut up 1 old sheet for cleaning rags, got 2 to go.

chaskavitch

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1073 on: December 12, 2018, 06:24:00 AM »
signed up for the one tonne challenge on 1 million women. 

making beeswax infused cotton wraps for my large lidless casserole dishes and all my various sized bowls.

Oh, how did the wraps turn out?  I want some more of these, but I've managed the one I have poorly and it's kind of just sad cotton now.  I'd love to know how to make them from scratch!


Anatidae V

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1074 on: December 15, 2018, 11:11:08 PM »
I cut up 3 old sheets with pinking shears for kitchen and household rags. They've been waiting to be chopped up for months! Now we'll be able to use less paper towels as well.

Linea_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1075 on: December 16, 2018, 04:50:33 AM »
I chopped some more wood from the garden for the wood stove. Then we can keep our basic electric floor wamer lower.

kenaces

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1076 on: December 16, 2018, 10:06:59 AM »
I have been a Vegan for about a year now, and ride my bike to work 3-4 days per week.

I started and continued both of these habits for health reasons not environmental reasons, but I do get some small satisfaction when I see threads like this and feel like I am doing something good.

FIRE_at_45

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1077 on: December 16, 2018, 10:07:13 AM »
My mom bought me a 1973 sewing machine so that we can do some of our own repairs instead of throwing things out.  I promptly developed a hole in the ass of my jeans.  I'm not sure how this is even possible because I rarely wear this pair.  I'm going to try to fix it and make them my work pants. 

I watched another movie on the environment.  It's called the The True Cost and it's about fast fashion.  It talks about the environmental and human impact of the fashion industry and really opens your eyes to what is really involved.  It is available on Netflix.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2018, 07:23:07 AM by FIRE_at_45 »

KathrinS

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1078 on: December 16, 2018, 11:22:13 AM »
I always packed my lunch a few times a week, but after reading MMM, I've started packing it every day, including weekends. I can make a decent lunch including fruit for about 0.50, whereas food from the supermarket might cost 3-5. Plus, I've been vegetarian for about 16 years now.

I only use public transportation, and today I took buses and trains to get to work, then to a social event.

I rarely shop for new clothes, beauty products and gadgets - this is an important one that is sometimes overlooked. In the weeks leading up to Christmas I've been given enough lotions, creams and body wash to last for the entire year or longer. Strangely, I've also been given jeans, a summer dress and converse, which have been sitting unused in someone's closet. Makes me think that we should do 'closet trade' type events more often, instead of buying new!

HappierAtHome

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1079 on: December 16, 2018, 07:40:52 PM »
I watched another movie on the environment.  It's called the True Cost and it's about fast fashion.  It talks about the environmental and human impact of the fashion industry and really opens your eyes to what is really involved.  It is available on Netflix.

Thanks for the recommendation! I read Overdressed this year, and it taught me a lot about the environmental cost of fast fashion.

Anatidae V

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1080 on: December 16, 2018, 07:54:42 PM »
I put curtain rails up in my bedroom over the weekend! It gets hit with a lot of sun during summer. Unfortunately we forgot the bits to attach the curtain to the rail, so need another trip to the shop...

I gave away a blow up pool on our local buynothing. Wins for everyone!

Linea_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1081 on: December 18, 2018, 06:27:02 AM »
Walked to work and will walk back again when the working day is over.

Poundwise

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1082 on: December 21, 2018, 09:48:26 PM »
I made a very good eggplant parmesan, which finally persuaded a hungry husband and oldest son that they like eggplant! Now, if the two youngest in the family would give it a try, we'd have one more vegetarian dish in our menu.

Hirondelle

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1083 on: December 21, 2018, 11:06:07 PM »
Went out for dinner with coworkers, took one of the few vegetarian pizzas that were available.

Anatidae V

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1084 on: December 27, 2018, 06:55:21 PM »
Walked to pick up pre-loved books from a neighbour after they posted on Buy Nothing.

HappierAtHome

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1085 on: December 27, 2018, 09:16:55 PM »
Walked to pick up pre-loved books from a neighbour after they posted on Buy Nothing.

I'm doing that exact thing this afternoon :-)

FIRE_at_45

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1086 on: December 27, 2018, 10:33:37 PM »
6 months 99% vegan and nearly 12 months at 75%.  True, these numbers are only estimates but pretty close I figure.  For Christmas day this year instead of turkey I made a "meatloaf" that was really good and then made all the other normal accompanying things.  I served it only to me and my kids so it was a pretty low risk endeavour.  I'd certainly do it again and feel confident making it for anyone. 

The kids made a cardboard Christmas tree this year and it turned out great and took up way less space in the LR than a big tree.  This was welcomed in our tiny place.

Also bought fewer presents and continue to focus on buying things that will be well used.  This is always a challenge with kids so one gift was an experience and another was something that was needed for experiences (bike helmet).
« Last Edit: December 28, 2018, 04:22:20 PM by FIRE_at_45 »

Anatidae V

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1087 on: December 28, 2018, 03:39:38 AM »
Bought a baby thing second hand! I had to drive to pick this one up, but hoping it's offset by one less electronic in landfill.

We also finally finished putting up blockouts in the master bedroom. Massive difference in light already, and it will be great during the next heatwave.

gaja

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1088 on: December 28, 2018, 01:01:34 PM »
Now that we have to take the dog out on a leash for every potty trip, the poo bags we have matter far more. Glad I sprung for the best 'eco' option I could find at the time. Anyone want to help with research and make sure I have the most optimal solution though? Obvs when we had a yard, we used a scoop pan periodically and disposed that way.

So, the thing is, every time you put something compostable in landfill it will rot in sealed conditions and create the greenhouse gas methane. So using composting bags and putting them in landfill could be equally as bad as using plastic bags. I think if you need to use a bin and bags, the best thing to do is repurpose bags eg from bread, frozen veg etc.

There are solutions like a worm farm but then you've got to find somewhere to put the output (can't be on edibles plants)!

For people with yards the best thing to do is make an in-ground worm farm (a hole or sunken bottomless bucket with a lid).
Unless your landfill burns off the methane to generate power? That will depend on the landfill, of course.

It is illegal in Norway to put organic waste in a landfill. Our waste is currently burned for district heating. But the municipality is planning to start sorting organic waste and make biogas. They are already making some from industrial waste and sewage, but that is used for the industrial processes. If they increase the biogas production, it can be used for fuel in trucks and vans. The leftovers from the gas production is used as fertilizer for farmers.

HappierAtHome

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1089 on: January 01, 2019, 08:26:31 PM »
Today:
Walked to and from the park for the toddler's outing.
Eating leftovers.
Making a big pot of tofu and vege curry to use up odds and ends in the fridge and get low-impact meals for days.
Food scraps are going into the worm farm.
Later today, walking to and from my medical appointment.

Edited to fix autocorrect fail.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2019, 11:03:25 PM by HappierAtHome »

HappierAtHome

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1090 on: January 01, 2019, 11:05:20 PM »
Turning food waste into food: I used spring onions yesterday in a salad. Popped the scraps in water and they've already grown so much overnight! I have the perfect self-watering pot for them once I'm ready to plant them out. I don't use spring onions a lot, but I'm excited about never having to buy them in plastic again.

Fresh Bread

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1091 on: January 01, 2019, 11:12:48 PM »
I've done that with carrots, lettuce, silverbeet and celery - great for getting a bit more out of your dollar too.

I bought some spring onion seedlings marked down for 99c this and last year. It's great because you get loads of plants in a tiny punnet and they are not hard to grow and not affected by pests. We always have a couple on hand without having to buy a whole bunch. Ditto herbs in plastic - most are easy to keep alive and safe from pests.

HappierAtHome

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1092 on: January 01, 2019, 11:16:41 PM »
I've done that with carrots, lettuce, silverbeet and celery - great for getting a bit more out of your dollar too.

I bought some spring onion seedlings marked down for 99c this and last year. It's great because you get loads of plants in a tiny punnet and they are not hard to grow and not affected by pests. We always have a couple on hand without having to buy a whole bunch. Ditto herbs in plastic - most are easy to keep alive and safe from pests.

Do you regrow carrots from the tops?

I have good luck with basil and parsley; not great luck with any other herbs!

Fresh Bread

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1093 on: January 02, 2019, 12:13:54 AM »
I've done that with carrots, lettuce, silverbeet and celery - great for getting a bit more out of your dollar too.

I bought some spring onion seedlings marked down for 99c this and last year. It's great because you get loads of plants in a tiny punnet and they are not hard to grow and not affected by pests. We always have a couple on hand without having to buy a whole bunch. Ditto herbs in plastic - most are easy to keep alive and safe from pests.

Do you regrow carrots from the tops?

I have good luck with basil and parsley; not great luck with any other herbs!

Carrots regrow about an inch long but it's a fun project. And I've never had any take from seed. My creeping thyme and lemongrass are really happy and oregano and mint die back and are reborn on a regular basis. My basil & mint get leafhoppers but recover and the basil also gets caterpillars but seems ok. I've just gone ahead and planted some mint in the ground in a lonely corner, it won't matter if it spreads. Thai basil also seems hardy. Then there's also a kaffir lime tree which isn't the healthiest but I need two leaves once a month or so, so good enough.

ETA: carrots - place tops in water until head grows leaves then plant and wait.

aetherie

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1094 on: January 02, 2019, 09:47:48 AM »
Our heating at home is natural gas, and today I signed up for a program through our gas company to pay a bit extra for Renewable Natural Gas. They get it from capturing methane produced from a landfill.

Bracken_Joy

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1095 on: January 02, 2019, 12:21:07 PM »
Noticed my neighbor gets their Imperfect Produce box on opposing weeks as me. Contacted customer care for something else (referral code page is broken), but while we were waiting for my screenshot to go through, I asked if it was possible for her to check if anyone else in my building gets boxes, and if not, to move me to the same weeks as Neighbor. May as well save them one stop and the associated fuel!

My usual small ones: walked to yoga as always. Keeping heat low and bundling up instead. Etc.

jengod

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1096 on: January 02, 2019, 01:29:33 PM »
* Got out the reel mower and shredded a big pile of fallen leaves; these will compost down over the course of the next year and feed the soil and plants, as well as sequestering carbon.

* Crumbled some dried eggshells and spread them under fruit trees.

* Used a salt-vinegar solution to clean an old pan and then poured out the solution on a sidewalk crack to kill crab grass (homemade “weed killer”)

HappierAtHome

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1097 on: January 02, 2019, 09:46:01 PM »
Today:
Eating vegan breakfast, lunch and snacks. Dinner will be vegetarian.
Combination of public transport and walking for my commute.
After work, will walk (with the pram) to a chemist to stock up on sunscreen.
Who Gives a Crap toilet paper (no plastic packaging, some profits go to charity) will be delivered today or tomorrow.

FIRE_at_45

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1098 on: January 03, 2019, 01:56:14 PM »
Today:
Eating vegan breakfast, lunch and snacks. Dinner will be vegetarian.

For anyone trying to eat a bit more vegan these 2 guys are informative.  They are identical twins and really athletic guys so they add a different angle to eating vegan. 

They are called the Healthy Pear.  The video below talks about a few staples to have if you are going to try cooking vegan.  They have other videos on some simple recipes. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2jcqsrRbn2o

Everyone is on their own journey through life.  Mine has taken a left turn eating vegan.  I`ll see where it goes.  I was a hardcore meat and potatoes style eater for the first 40+ years.  IME, eating vegan has introduced me to so many new flavours and options. 

Frugal Lizard

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1099 on: January 08, 2019, 07:34:56 AM »
signed up for the one tonne challenge on 1 million women. 

making beeswax infused cotton wraps for my large lidless casserole dishes and all my various sized bowls.

Oh, how did the wraps turn out?  I want some more of these, but I've managed the one I have poorly and it's kind of just sad cotton now.  I'd love to know how to make them from scratch!
It took a little trial and error but my best result was using the warming tray lined with aluminum foil, melting some beeswax and a dash of coconut oil on the warm surface.  Then I put the cotton cloth in the warm wax.  I did this a couple of times to get the cloth quite saturated.  Then flipped it over.  Repeated the multiple infusions of wax.  The next step was to cover the cloth with a parchment paper and with a warm iron pushed the excess wax out.  Some of them don't have enough wax so I will remelt some wax and top them up when I make some new ones. 

My friend made hers with resin and some essential oils in addition to the beeswax to make them unique and more durable.  She is estimating hers will last a year.