This sign hangs over my sink.
Let’s all try to reduce out carbon footprint!
Your carbon footprint is the amount of fossil fuel you use, and therefore the amount of greenhouse gases you create. Not just directly, but indirectly such as when we buy items that were shipped long distances to reach us, or create waste, both which use fuel and create pollution.
Here is a link to a calculator that can tell you what your carbon footprint is:
If we all try to reduce our carbon footprints it will make a difference and we will be responsible stewards of our earth. I don’t know about you but that makes me feel really good about myself.
I try to create a lifestyle in which taking care of the planet is second nature to me. I hope I set a good example for the next generation as well. While some of us would never consider littering and will always turn off lights when leaving a room, there are other ways to save energy.
Buying food from local sources or better yet, growing your own food helps to reduce your carbon footprint because you are not using products that were shipped from long distances using fuel and causing pollution.
Walking or biking to work or for shopping and errands helps save fuel and pollution from you car. If you are in the market for a new car consider a hybrid.
Planting shade trees and wind breaks of evergreens around your property will help keep it cool in summer or warmer in winter so you will use less energy. A simple thing like installing a screen door so you can catch breezes and go longer before needing to turn on your AC can help.
Many things can be reused or refashioned into useful things to save on the waste we produce. Plastic grocery bags can be cut into strips and crocheted into tote bags, rugs and sleeping pads.
I made this!
A local church makes these sleeping pads for homeless people.
Your sacks from chicken feed can be turned into cute tote bags.
I recently saw a gadget that turns plastic bottles into plastic ‘rope’.
If you buy Parmesan cheese in the cans with shaker tops you can fill the empty cans with baking soda and add several drops of your favorite essential oil. Sprinkle on your carpet before bed and let sit overnight. Vacuum in the morning for a freshened carpet. Did you know those green lids screw onto a mason jar? Great for storing dried herbs from the garden or rice and other staples.
Better yet try to choose products that have the least packaging in the first place. Buy that parm as a big chunk and grate it yourself! Buy one large container of ice cream, applesauce, yogurt or whatever and portion it out into your reusable containers rather than buying small individually packaged containers. Make juice and ice tea in a pitcher (remember those?) instead of buying individually bottled drinks for you and your family. Buy coffee, tea, spices and grains in bulk.
And Puh-leeze never buy bottled water!
(Let me repeat that)
Puh-leeze never buy bottled water!
We recently switched to utility company that uses wind energy for our home. I have not noticed any difference in our bill yet but if they produce more wind energy than is used they sell it to the regular utility company and we get a reduced bill! It is a great option since I can’t put up my own wind turbine or solar panels. At least I know my home is powered by clean energy. Check if they have this option where you live.
In Iowa the company is Alegient Energy.
Some other things that can help:
Read books instead of electronic devices or watching TV – I bet the library is in walking distance for some of you.
Let your hair dry naturally.
Shower less (it’s better for your skin).
Cook several things at once if using your oven.
Use a reusable sponge or dishtowel instead of paper towels.
Bring your lunch to work in reusable containers (and don’t forget reusable silverware).
Don’t use power lawn tools and get a better workout!
Share books and magazines with neighbors or coworkers.
Buy in bulk.
Try to have one day a week where you don’t use any prepackaged anything. Once you can handle that try to go longer.
Compost anything you can.
Recycle anything recyclable – no excuses! (I can’t believe some people still don’t recycle at all).
Dry clothes on a clothesline.
Make your own non-polluting laundry soap and cleaning supplies – it’s easy!
Buy from thrift stores. salvage stores and the ReStore – great places!
If you are shopping for a new home, consider a smaller one.
Plant a tree. Plant anything except a lawn.
You have probably heard some or even all of these suggestions but are you implementing them? The time is NOW and it starts with you. Hopefully your example will inspire others. Don’t put it off, we have a planet to save!
Another sign in my kitchen!
Do you have any more ideas for reducing your carbon footprint?