Waste and Energy

Overall, I have found that these past two days were much harder than reducing my water usage on Sunday as I had to consciously think about every aspect of my life and if I could be cutting back on my energy consumption or the waste that I was producing.

First, with energy, my goals were to not use my hair straightener, not charge my phone overnight, unplug the chargers that I was not using, and only charge my computer when it was completely out of battery.  Overall, I did manage to meet my first three goals, but I did not meet my fourth goal with my computer use.  Seeing that I use my computer a lot for internet use, research, writing/ checking e-mails, and writing papers, it was hard not to ensure that I always had sufficient battery when using my computer.  Therefore, instead I am going to change my goal a bit and say that I am only going to charge my computer when it gets below 20% battery and not charge it overnight just like my phone.  As far as the other three energy goals go, even though they were not hard to meet, they did require a bit of conscious effort on my part.  I had to ensure that I was not using my phone a lot through the day in order to ensure that I would have enough battery to last me through a majority of the day until I could charge my phone when I was sitting at my desk at night.  In addition, I had to always remind myself to unplug my chargers when I was not using my phone (this is hard because my phone charger is placed in such an inconvenient place behind my bed).  All in all, I found that if I just thought about my energy use and tried to imagine just how much energy I needed, I was just fine.

On the other hand, I struggled a lot more with the waste issue.  Yesterday I was on the go a lot because I had three classes, an advisor meeting, lifting, and then volleyball practice.  I had minimal time to really sit down and eat, so I did have to buy two clif bars on the go from Slayter.  By the time I was done with everything, both dining halls were closed, so I was forced to go to Slayter.  I normally get a salad but seeing that this comes in a plastic container, I decided to get a sandwich instead, which was only wrapped in paper.  My original goal was to not buy any new packaged food products and even though I broke that yesterday, I did stick true to that today.  I had more time to sit down and eat, so I did not have the need to buy new packaged food products.  However, I did remember to only use one napkin and compost as I had planned in addition to recycling my paper.  I think the packaged food products will be the biggest issue for me.

Emily Marguerite

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