Author Topic: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?  (Read 378906 times)

Dollar Slice

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1300 on: May 15, 2019, 06:54:37 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

Unfortunately that place closed and has been an empty storefront for ages. I used to walk by it fairly frequently. Thanks, though!

Fresh Bread

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1301 on: May 15, 2019, 09:50:43 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

Unfortunately that place closed and has been an empty storefront for ages. I used to walk by it fairly frequently. Thanks, though!

Ah bummer, it's such a shame when shops like that close. It's a difficult balance I'm sure in pricing / paying rent / getting the footfall. My local co-op moved to a higher priced site with higher exposure and has loads more members now but obviously it was a massive risk at the time. Today at the co-op I bought pepitas, milk and a brownie without packaging. I followed that up with a trip to the supermarket next door though for packet soup and biscuits :/

Frugal Lizard

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1302 on: May 17, 2019, 07:18:29 AM »
Brought my own containers to the store I get my shampoo, spices and dried fruit from.  Our shower came with a fancy soap dispenser and I finally started using it when my health food store started selling my favourite expensive shampoo in bulk at almost half the price of the bottled product.  The soap dispenser is pretty mustachian in that it dispenses the tiniest amounts of shampoo so we are using way less than before.
Dried fruit keeps freshest in a mason jar in the fridge - and the family eats it because it is front of mind and convenient to get to.  I also think that if we eat prunes and apricots out of season, then the dried version has the most food value and lowest footprint.  So buying them in the mason jar and just bringing them home and popping into the fridge is a great way to save time as well as cut down on food waste.  (no one in the family likes to investigate what is in that plastic bag in the drawer of the fridge)
I dream of building a solar dehydrator and drying local in season fruits to really lower the footprint of my fruit loving family this summer and drying bushels of Niagara fruit so that I have a stash of dried fruits.  I can't can enough to last us all winter.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1303 on: May 17, 2019, 07:13:18 PM »
I bought bulk organic eggs! First time doing so. I brought in an old egg carton and took the amount I wanted. This will be really useful when I only need a few. They're more expensive, but eggs are cheap to begin with.

I brought a container for bulk nutritional yeast and had them weigh and tare it. Also only bought package-free produce - the prices at the closest coop grocery store were comparable to a big chain for some of it.

ETA: Picked up shower supplies from Buy Nothing.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2019, 07:52:30 PM by MonkeyJenga »

Id rather be outside

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1304 on: May 17, 2019, 09:50:43 PM »
Reading this is helping me stay motivated not to take the easy way out even with a baby in the house!

Today:
-baby is in cloth diapers that were line dried
-using cloth pads (And decided I will buy a cup after being inspired by others here.  Was going to buy more cloth pads now that I am home all day instead of at an office, but I want to try the cup first.)
-made a batch of baby food using a recipe from a library cookbook
-saved a bread bag to give to my in-laws for dog waste
-turned all the leftover foods in the fridge into a fried rice dish for dinner
-added food scraps to compost bin
-poured all water left in cups (mostly baby's!) into watering can for the houseplants
-turned power strip that controls wifi and TV off whenever baby was awake (we have committed to not using screens in front of baby during this stage of life)

jengod

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1305 on: May 18, 2019, 11:29:46 PM »
Mowed the lawn with our reel mower, left the clippings to “grasscycle”


MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1306 on: May 20, 2019, 09:17:23 PM »
Brought a hand towel on my hike to dry my hands in public restrooms. (It was too cold to air dry.)

Also successfully used my own container for the bulk bin at Fred Meyer!

jengod

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1307 on: May 29, 2019, 04:44:46 PM »
We are not being our best environmental selves these days but now that I’m two weeks post-partum and mostly healed, I’ve gotten back on my bike/e-bikecar! I biked to the ATM the other day and I just did a school run in the ELF.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1308 on: May 30, 2019, 05:33:48 PM »
I need turf that my kids can run on, and my turf has bare patches. I planted those with a mixture of tall fescue (lower water needs) and clover (supposedly crowds out other weeds naturally and reduces fertilizer dependence, and bees like it). Watered by hand to reduce wastage.

Dollar Slice

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1309 on: May 30, 2019, 10:16:15 PM »
I noticed that one of the bakeries providing bread to the grocery store I shop at had switched to using biodegradable plastic bags. I went to their website to see if they had more info about it and they had a really long explanation of all the ways they try to be clean and green - using biodiesel, installing solar power, reducing waste and donating extra food to soup kitchens, purchasing ingredients grown by local farmers, donating food scraps to those same farmers to feed their pigs, using eco-friendly cleaning products, reusing things whenever possible (boxes etc.) including collecting things that farmers can reuse, etc... I'm so impressed with their dedication and efforts! The bag seems almost beside the point after reading about everything they're doing. I will definitely make a point to buy from them in the future. (It's Iggy's Bread if you're in the Northeast U.S. and want to look for them.)

MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1310 on: May 30, 2019, 10:51:14 PM »
Picked up tomato starts from Buy Nothing. I would normally let someone else take em, since I'm not good at growing things, but nobody was biting. Wish me luck!

As usual, took the bus, brought a water bottle and snacks from the bulk bin.

jengod

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What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1311 on: May 31, 2019, 03:24:31 PM »
Picked up tomato starts from Buy Nothing. I would normally let someone else take em, since I'm not good at growing things, but nobody was biting. Wish me luck!

LUCK!!

* Line drying a load of laundry saves electricity usage
* The new manual edger works great. Between the scythe, the edger and the reel mower, our yard can be maintained without any fossil-fuel inputs. Whoo! Plus not hiring a gardener saves us ~$900 a year, and it’s a good workout.
* Trying to use crossbreezes to cool the house instead of turning on the AC
« Last Edit: May 31, 2019, 03:34:10 PM by jengod »

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1312 on: May 31, 2019, 03:44:06 PM »
Biked to work and combined this change in routine with giving up my morning cup of coffee.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1313 on: June 04, 2019, 01:01:07 AM »
I ate mostly produce today, with no or minimal packaging. Got a bunch of free secondhand goods - some for me, some for friends with babies on the way, and some for strangers that mentioned a need. Also serving as distribution center for stuff someone left behind after a move. Better than throwing it in a dumpster.

Next I need to plant my tomato starts. I might kill them, but they were going to be wasted otherwise.

Trifele

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1314 on: June 04, 2019, 05:13:33 AM »
Harvested a big load of produce from my garden:  kale, tomatoes, carrots, cherries, gooseberries, and blueberries.  Doesn't get any fresher than 50 feet from your door.  :)

Fishindude

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1315 on: June 04, 2019, 07:20:31 AM »
Planted seven acres of alfalfa clover mix and 80 hills of pumpkins for the wildlife.

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1316 on: June 05, 2019, 10:00:22 AM »
I have been without hot water since Friday, and I've been sorely tempted to use disposable plates and forks for all our meals. But I can't bring myself to do that, so instead I heated water on the stove to wash dishes.

Dollar Slice

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1317 on: June 06, 2019, 06:04:38 AM »
I was finally able to cash in my travel points for 4 tons of carbon offsets. That company's website took about 2 months to fix the part where you cash in points (eyeroll). I dunno how much carbon offsets actually help but it's probably better than not doing it and it's definitely better than using the points to travel or buy stuff.

I have been without hot water since Friday, and I've been sorely tempted to use disposable plates and forks for all our meals. But I can't bring myself to do that, so instead I heated water on the stove to wash dishes.

I wash dishes in cold water a lot since my building replaced the water heaters... for some reason it takes for-freaking-ever to get hot water sometimes (like 4-5 minutes of running the tap). Some dishes are too greasy to clean in cold water, but most are OK.


RetiredAt63

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1318 on: June 08, 2019, 08:10:38 AM »

I wash dishes in cold water a lot since my building replaced the water heaters... for some reason it takes for-freaking-ever to get hot water sometimes (like 4-5 minutes of running the tap). Some dishes are too greasy to clean in cold water, but most are OK.

I would just boil some water in a kettle and add it to the cold sink water.  Even at Cub camp we heated up water for washing dishes.  Rinsed in cold though.

Imma

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1319 on: June 08, 2019, 08:44:40 AM »
One of our pillowcases has a big rip, but most of the material is still in good shape (not wornout / getting thin). I will put it with my fabric stash and probably use it for the pockets of a dress I'm making.

Dollar Slice

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1320 on: June 08, 2019, 09:14:15 AM »

I wash dishes in cold water a lot since my building replaced the water heaters... for some reason it takes for-freaking-ever to get hot water sometimes (like 4-5 minutes of running the tap). Some dishes are too greasy to clean in cold water, but most are OK.

I would just boil some water in a kettle and add it to the cold sink water.  Even at Cub camp we heated up water for washing dishes.  Rinsed in cold though.

I don't fill up the sink with water since I'm cooking for one and the dishes are pretty minimal. Luckily cold water is fine most of the time, or I can wait until after I take a shower since that gets the hot water going. If I really wanted to get hardcore I could test the hot water every 30 minutes and see if I can figure out what time my neighbors take showers/wash dishes/etc. and then the hot water would already be piped up to our floor ;-)

Today's small thing: purchased some reusable containers/bags to eliminate more single-use plastic going forward. I decided to hold off on the silicone freezer bags I was thinking about, just because I use Ziploc bags so infrequently already that the box I have will probably last another year.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1321 on: June 08, 2019, 11:41:44 AM »
Saved paper that is printed on only one side and re-used it.

TrMama

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1322 on: June 09, 2019, 05:54:16 PM »
Biked with my daughter to drop her off at her weekend lesson. Then biked to get groceries, dropped them off at home and then back to the lesson site to pick her up. The hardest part was convincing DD to bike home since a lot of it is uphill and she was tired.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1323 on: June 10, 2019, 02:43:13 PM »
Very small: I started mixing vegetable bouillon in with my chicken bouillon. For some reason I haven't wanted to make the switch, so I'm easing myself into full vegetable broth.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1324 on: June 10, 2019, 09:10:34 PM »
I brought my own container to Sprouts and got sausage links from the meat counter in my dish instead of getting the bulk sausage packed in Styrofoam. I even saved the butcher paper.

cats

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1325 on: June 11, 2019, 08:49:36 AM »
I brought my own container to Sprouts and got sausage links from the meat counter in my dish instead of getting the bulk sausage packed in Styrofoam. I even saved the butcher paper.

Wow, that's awesome that they will let you do that! 


My item:  I semi-regularly (maybe every other month) have work meetings in a town about 75 miles away.  I usually drive, I do try to carpool with another co-worker if someone else from my location is attending the meeting.  A few months ago I realized that the part of town many of these meetings occur in is not too far from their train station.  So yesterday I had a meeting and I took the train!  It does take longer than driving (about 2 hours vs. 1.5 hours, plus then about 30 min total getting to/from the stations on each end), but it was much much nicer.  I did some work on my laptop on the ride out, and then snoozed and listened to an audiobook on the way home, so it was a much more productive AND restful day than if I had driven.  I got more exercise in than I would have driving (because I biked to the train station on each end), and my back and butt weren't all stiff and cranky like they are after 3 hours sitting in a car.  And I could get up and pee whenever I wanted :) I'm totally going to do it again whenever carpooling is not an option (maybe even when carpooling *is* an option!)

Fru-Gal

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1326 on: June 11, 2019, 09:20:06 AM »
Had a meeting to get to in another city. Rode my bike in a dress with shorts underneath and fancy sandals, left bike at free train station bike valet that I just realized/remembered exists, took train to meeting. Came back, the valet recognized me and brought me my bike. I said "do you have a super power for remembering which person goes with which bike?" and he said, "something like that." Rode a new route home that I just realized had been striped for bikes. Stopped by my favorite "little library" and picked up some new free reading.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1327 on: June 11, 2019, 11:19:50 AM »
I reused spice and produce bags for my groceries. The only thing with packaging waste was deodorant. Which is a lot of waste, but this one's a lot harder to change up.

okcisok

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1328 on: June 11, 2019, 10:31:33 PM »
Reading this is helping me stay motivated not to take the easy way out even with a baby in the house!

Today:
-baby is in cloth diapers that were line dried
-using cloth pads (And decided I will buy a cup after being inspired by others here.  Was going to buy more cloth pads now that I am home all day instead of at an office, but I want to try the cup first.)
-made a batch of baby food using a recipe from a library cookbook
-saved a bread bag to give to my in-laws for dog waste
-turned all the leftover foods in the fridge into a fried rice dish for dinner
-added food scraps to compost bin
-poured all water left in cups (mostly baby's!) into watering can for the houseplants
-turned power strip that controls wifi and TV off whenever baby was awake (we have committed to not using screens in front of baby during this stage of life)

+1 on the cloth pads, and gentle encouragement to buy a cup. I really like mine, and it saves so much water and plastic waste. If you're at all a sewist, cloth pads are really simple to make. I made mine from scraps of fabric. They can be hand sewn quickly if you don't have a machine. Mine have lasted for almost a decade with machine washing and air drying. When they finally wear out, they're 100% cotton so I'll compost them.
Good on you for not using screens in front of your little one!

Fru-Gal

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1329 on: June 11, 2019, 10:45:59 PM »
Reading this is helping me stay motivated not to take the easy way out even with a baby in the house!

Today:
-baby is in cloth diapers that were line dried
-using cloth pads (And decided I will buy a cup after being inspired by others here.  Was going to buy more cloth pads now that I am home all day instead of at an office, but I want to try the cup first.)
-made a batch of baby food using a recipe from a library cookbook
-saved a bread bag to give to my in-laws for dog waste
-turned all the leftover foods in the fridge into a fried rice dish for dinner
-added food scraps to compost bin
-poured all water left in cups (mostly baby's!) into watering can for the houseplants
-turned power strip that controls wifi and TV off whenever baby was awake (we have committed to not using screens in front of baby during this stage of life)

+1 on the cloth pads, and gentle encouragement to buy a cup. I really like mine, and it saves so much water and plastic waste. If you're at all a sewist, cloth pads are really simple to make. I made mine from scraps of fabric. They can be hand sewn quickly if you don't have a machine. Mine have lasted for almost a decade with machine washing and air drying. When they finally wear out, they're 100% cotton so I'll compost them.
Good on you for not using screens in front of your little one!

This wonderful list gives me hope, in a way. I was born in the 1970s and this was how we lived. But seems to me from 1990 onward the culture of excess took hold. Supposedly it was the 80s but personally I didn't feel it at all till the 90s, and used to look around and wonder what happened, when did we all stop turning off the lights, when did we all get so obsessed with making money?

Dollar Slice

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1330 on: June 12, 2019, 07:35:36 AM »
Not something I did today, but thought it was worth mentioning - if you use the Amazon Smile program (which donates a small percentage of your eligible purchases to a charity of your choice) you can choose a pro-environment charity like 350.org or NRDC to benefit. It's peanuts in the overall scheme of things but we're all about tiny changes adding up to big results on MMM :-)  And it's a "set it and forget it" kind of change you can take five minutes to do and it will have small benefits for years.

RetiredAt63

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1331 on: June 12, 2019, 08:59:41 AM »

I wash dishes in cold water a lot since my building replaced the water heaters... for some reason it takes for-freaking-ever to get hot water sometimes (like 4-5 minutes of running the tap). Some dishes are too greasy to clean in cold water, but most are OK.

I would just boil some water in a kettle and add it to the cold sink water.  Even at Cub camp we heated up water for washing dishes.  Rinsed in cold though.

I don't fill up the sink with water since I'm cooking for one and the dishes are pretty minimal. Luckily cold water is fine most of the time, or I can wait until after I take a shower since that gets the hot water going. If I really wanted to get hardcore I could test the hot water every 30 minutes and see if I can figure out what time my neighbors take showers/wash dishes/etc. and then the hot water would already be piped up to our floor

You are a better dishwasher than I am.  Without a dishwasher (i.e. at the apartment) I wash dishes once a day, start with not much water in the sink and wash the cleanest things, rinse, then wash the next cleanest things, rinse, and the sink has more water in it by the time I get to really dirty things that need a bit of a soak.  At home there are still things I wash by hand, and the best time to wash them is when the (stuffed full) dishwasher is running or right after I have had a shower, because the hot water is already there.

Poundwise

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1332 on: June 12, 2019, 09:57:24 AM »
Finally walked kids to school and ran my out of shape, jiggly self back home. And will do it again at pickup.

A combination of a tight schedule and a new school that is 5 blocks farther than the old one caused me to drive all year.  During this time I hauled an extra 3 tons of metal around town twice daily for no good reason, and I also gained 7 pounds, felt ill, sluggish and grumpy.  Not my finest year.  So it was kind of a non-negative I did this morning.

On the positive side, I lent our reel mower and electric mower to a neighbor whose gas mower died.  I gave him the lecture on the evils of 2 stroke gas engines.  He really liked our electric mower, so perhaps he will get one as a replacement for his polluting machine.


Imma

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1333 on: June 16, 2019, 03:29:55 PM »
I picked up a load of groceries that were about to expire. It includes tofu that will go into a pasta dish and cabbage that will go into a nice vegan curry for tomorrow's dinner. It also included two pots of yoghurt, french bread and some fruit. I had the bread for dinner with leftover soup and one of the pots of yoghurt for dessert. All of this would have otherwise been thrown away.

I repaired an old quilt that I made years ago and is starting to wear out in some places. I fixed a few rips with a wide zig zag stitch and I actually quite like the look. This quilt is our favourite quilt because of its nice weight and it's especially relevant to this thread because the quilt was initially made from worn out jeans, so my mending today will prolong its second life. It's not the first time I've been fixing this quilt, but this is the first major renovation, as opposed to adding a few stitches here and there over the years.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1334 on: June 16, 2019, 10:38:30 PM »
I ate a beyond burger. I've been holding off on buying it at the grocery store since it's expensive and untested. It should be a good addition to my chili and keep me from pining over meat. It does come packaged in plastic though...

I'm also picking up secondhand baby clothes and kitchen supplies.

Dollar Slice

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1335 on: June 17, 2019, 09:08:10 AM »
I saw a clip on YT that Burger King are coming out with a Beyond Whopper.  My concern is that the price point is wrong.  They are going to sell it for $1 more.  To me most people don't care enough to pay more.

I'm sure Burger King is not approaching it from a "how can we get people to cut back on meat" angle, but rather from a "how can we get more money out of vegetarians/vegans" angle. They're happy to milk those people for an extra buck since they know they're dedicated enough to their cause to make sacrifices.

This probably doesn't count for much, but yesterday I could not resist calling out the hypocrisy of someone who, in one breath, bragged about the insane amount of transatlantic flights he's doing this summer, and in the next mocked Americans for being in denial about climate change and not driving electric cars. Hoping I spread a little awareness about the high carbon emissions from air travel...

MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1336 on: June 17, 2019, 11:16:30 AM »
I ate a beyond burger. I've been holding off on buying it at the grocery store since it's expensive and untested. It should be a good addition to my chili and keep me from pining over meat. It does come packaged in plastic though...

I'm also picking up secondhand baby clothes and kitchen supplies.

I had one at a fast food place and was blown away by the taste.  I haven't eaten meat for well over a year but I could not tell the difference.  My ex is a vegetarian because she never liked meat.  She tried one and was disgusted because it really does taste like meat.

I saw a clip on YT that Burger King are coming out with a Beyond Whopper.  My concern is that the price point is wrong.  They are going to sell it for $1 more.  To me most people don't care enough to pay more.
My friend has been vegan for years and also thought it tasted just like a burger. I thought it tasted like a turkey burger when I tried the patty by itself. Still meat, just not beef to me. With the bun and sauce and toppings, I didn't taste the patty much. This restaurant might have cut the patties in half, though, it was much thinner than my friend has had in the past.

bacchi

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1337 on: June 17, 2019, 12:11:08 PM »
Environmental Footprint Calculator

https://www.footprintcalculator.org/

^this little calculator is enlightening for determining your personal footprint.  Some things are hard to estimate (i.e. how far away does your food come from) but it's still worthwhile.  I'd love to hear of someone who is down to only 1 earth.  I'm 2.5.

1 earth.

Vegetarian; take motorized transportation ~30 miles/week mostly in a Prius; small, very energy efficient, house; and 100% renewable electricity.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1338 on: June 17, 2019, 04:09:57 PM »
Yikes, I'm 2 earths. And I'm pretty low impact compared to most people in this country.

No credit given for my lack of offspring, though.

honeybbq

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1339 on: June 17, 2019, 04:33:38 PM »
Ugh, I'm at 2.9. I fly a lot for work. Maybe that's a big one?

Dollar Slice

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1340 on: June 17, 2019, 04:36:36 PM »
Yeah, unfortunately flying contributes a ton of carbon emissions. (Both literally and metaphorically... a single flight can be over a ton of carbon emissions per passenger.)

Yikes, I'm 2 earths. And I'm pretty low impact compared to most people in this country.

I don't think it's possible to be one 'earth' worth of carbon emissions in some of these calculators. I tried one where I literally only put in food and medicine (no heating, electric, housing, transportation, clothes, etc.) saying that I was on a low-meat diet, and I was already over my sustainable carbon budget for the year. I'm not sure of the calculators' accuracy (I've tried a few and had pretty varying results, by a factor of 100%) but if they are fairly accurate then a lot of the change is going to have to be in industry and not at home. If it's not possible to feed yourself and heat your home without being unsustainable... then we need more efficient/less polluting food and heat sources.

mountain mustache

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1341 on: June 17, 2019, 07:14:07 PM »
I am a 1.1 earth. I live in a town that is 1 mile across, so don't drive very frequently. I live in a townhouse with 2 other people and it's very energy effecient. I recycle everything and ride my bike most places. I could improve by eating fewer animal products, and driving a more fuel efficient vehicle when I drive. I don't fly, and don't really buy things like household appliances/clothing/shoes/stuff.
I do think if the calculator were to get more specific, I would be a higher number...I buy at least 1 carbon bicycle every year for bike racing, and I know the manufacturing process is not environmentally friendly, as well the material itself is not recyclable in any way. For being an eco friendly thing to do (bike riding, that is) the bike industry is actually not terribly environmentally friendly, and wastes a lot of plastic and other materials.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1342 on: June 18, 2019, 01:49:22 PM »
I got 3 earths! Ouch!

It's possible that I drive less than I think--I just moved and started biking to work and I don't have a good idea of that yet. And I probably overestimated my flying. Not sure what else I can do short of moving to an apartment, which was hell with my children. The other thing is that there is a wide variety of "packaged" foods. On the one hand, I don't bring my own jar to buy bulk rice, I get it in bags, but I get uncooked rice in big bags--not pre-cooked rice, which uses much more packaging. For instance.

Back to the topic, this weekend I blew 18 bags of cellulose insulation into my attic to increase its R value.

jengod

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1343 on: June 18, 2019, 02:54:36 PM »
Working hard on going paperless and today I mastered “electronic check-in” at the doctor so that saved at least one printout.

All our insurance stuff is now on apps as well, as well as the existing online banking stuff we already set up.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1344 on: June 18, 2019, 04:11:44 PM »
* Air-drying all my laundry.
* Threw dry-clean only clothes in with the wash.
* Ate vegan leftovers for breakfast.
* Tried someone's tofu yesterday - it's not as terrible as I used to think.
* About to clean off a secondhand side table to use as my bedside table. (The bed is secondhand too. Was a roommate's, so it's not like I picked it off the sidewalk.)
* No impact yet, but I emailed my county's waste department to see if produce stickers could go in compost bins. I can't get consistent answers on this. (Update: nope, not compostable. Not a big deal if a few get into the mix, but ideally they should be removed.)

Yikes, I'm 2 earths. And I'm pretty low impact compared to most people in this country.

I don't think it's possible to be one 'earth' worth of carbon emissions in some of these calculators. I tried one where I literally only put in food and medicine (no heating, electric, housing, transportation, clothes, etc.) saying that I was on a low-meat diet, and I was already over my sustainable carbon budget for the year. I'm not sure of the calculators' accuracy (I've tried a few and had pretty varying results, by a factor of 100%) but if they are fairly accurate then a lot of the change is going to have to be in industry and not at home. If it's not possible to feed yourself and heat your home without being unsustainable... then we need more efficient/less polluting food and heat sources.

Agree that systematic changes are needed. That's part of why I've worked to get Democrats elected in swing areas, as they're better on environmental policy on the whole. But I could still do better on a personal level. I've pledged not to fly for at least a year, but I've already flown twice this year. I'm also living in a free-standing house for the first time in my adult life. That has a big impact, even with roommates.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2019, 04:19:19 PM by MonkeyJenga »

Dollar Slice

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1345 on: June 18, 2019, 04:43:20 PM »
Agree that systematic changes are needed. That's part of why I've worked to get Democrats elected in swing areas, as they're better on environmental policy on the whole. But I could still do better on a personal level. I've pledged not to fly for at least a year, but I've already flown twice this year. I'm also living in a free-standing house for the first time in my adult life. That has a big impact, even with roommates.

Yeah, I'm 100% not arguing that we shouldn't do the best we can. Just pointing out that it may not be possible for some people to achieve 1 'earth' where they live (at least according to those calculators, which may not be that accurate - e.g. if you are in a HCOL city and it's judging your utility and food consumption by dollar prices, it will overestimate your usage compared to someone living somewhere cheap, because the same amount of electricity and food costs more; or if someone is buying expensive vegan cheese and ice cream they might spend more on food than someone who eats chicken and eggs every day, and the calculator would erroneously say they had more emissions than the meat-eater). Some calculators do a better job than others, I've taken several and gotten anywhere from 8-15 tons of carbon emissions (although that was before I switched to renewable electricity sources).

Housing is a challenge - if you live somewhere with a lot of old stock, it's probably better to live in an existing home and be as efficient as possible in it, rather than use all the resources to build something brand new, even if it would then allow you to rank a lot lower on the carbon emissions calculator. But if you're in a city like NYC, building probably isn't an option anyway, and there are vanishingly few clean/green buildings to live in.

Raenia

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1346 on: June 19, 2019, 06:36:03 AM »
Convinced my husband to move acquiring a composting bin up the house-project-list by a few months - he was pushing to leave it until fall, because there are other things he thinks are more important.  Whereas I want to have it as soon as possible, it is a low difficulty project (unlike most of the rest), and will have an immediate effect on our environmental impact.  Our city doesn't offer composting, so the sooner I can get ours up and running, the better.

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1347 on: June 19, 2019, 07:40:01 AM »
Over the weekend:

 - Acquired an allotment, to try and make sure a bigger chunk of our food only travels a few miles by bike.
 - Shifted a substantial amount of old timber from the garden (decking boards, etc) in a couple of bike trailer trips.
 - Used it to build some beds, avoiding buying new materials.
 - Did some bike advocacy stuff at neighbourhood summer fete thing.

TrMama

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1348 on: June 19, 2019, 10:26:24 AM »
I'm continuing to bike to work at least 4 days/week. I've also harvested more food from my balcony garden than I'd expected. It's producing almost as much salad greens as we eat and the snap peas are going gangbusters. I've also picked a single zucchini.

Alas, potato plants aren't quite as deer resistant here as they were at a previous house. Hopefully the fact a couple plants have been nearly razed won't affect the roots too much.

pachnik

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Re: What small things did you do today to reduce your environmental impact?
« Reply #1349 on: June 19, 2019, 11:03:46 AM »
I brought a bamboo toothbrush to work to stash in my desk.  I give my teeth a quick brush after my morning coffee. 

ETA:  Sometimes I like to buy my lunch at a local bakery/cafe that has very good quality baking.  They also have quiche with a side salad that you can get to go and reheat later.  Since I knew I was going to stop there on the way to work, I took a tupperware container and a small jar from home.  They put the quiche and salad in the container and a little bit of salad dressing for me in the jar.  No waste!   They've got us well trained at that place for sure.

Also, for the first time ever, I picked up a piece of plastic trash and I'm going to put it in my home recycling container.   
« Last Edit: June 19, 2019, 11:41:01 AM by pachnik »