Saturday, August 02, 2008

Campaign Earth Challenge

New challenge: Reduce your use!
This challenge is designed to get us all thinking about the disposable society we live in. Whether it's the drive-thru restaurants, the disposable cameras, or the endless packaging wrapped around everything we buy, it all got created with the use of a lot of energy and will end with it filling more holes in our planetary home. Finding a place to start making an effort to minimize your contribution to this may seem daunting, but it's easier than you think. Try bringing your own coffee (or beverage of choice) mug with you everywhere you go and start using those great cloth bags for your grocery shopping. Many places will even give you a discount for using them. And for further motivation toward taking this challenge:

  • "If 25% of American families used just 10 fewer plastic bags each month, an estimated 2.5 billion bags could be saved from landfills each year." (One Makes the Difference, Julia Butterfly Hill)

  • It has been estimated that landfills in the U.S. are responsible for about a third of this country's total methane emissions.(The Complete Idiot's Guide to Saving the Environment, Greg Pahl)
    Meeting this challenge is as easy as 1, 2, 3:

  • Buy and use a non-disposable travel mug. Get in the habit of keeping it in your car or backpack at all times. You'll find it coming in far more handy than you imagined. You'll start using it to fill up on water on the way home or as a convenient place to store pistachio shells on a road trip!

  • Buy and use those great cloth shopping bags. Or, make some yourself out of old cloth. Again, keep a few in your car or backpack so they're there when you need them.

  • Take this challenge a little further. Start finding other ways to reduce your waste. Do you really need to put 2 oranges in one of those plastic bags? Next time you're leaving the bookstore, carry the book home without the bag. Before recycling your white paper, cut it into scrap pieces to write notes or grocery lists on.
    Every time we use less stuff, we help the planet. It's that simple!


Melanie said...

I purchased some really inexpensive, reusable shopping bags from Market Basket and I use them every time I grocery shop. I feel so much better not using plastic bags that go directly into my garbage can, and it's also easier to get the groceries in the house since the reusable totes hold so much more.

Nora said...

I keep meaning to get some of them too. My friend said Publix sells them for $1 each.

Chris C. said...

I use my plastic bags to bring my lunch to work and to pick up dog poop.

Melanie said...

Chris, you could invest in a "reuseable" lunch bag, although, I'm not sure what you'd do with the dog poop.