Final Say

Well this week of refusing car rides, running away fro the toilet so no one sees that I didn’t flush, and trying my hardest not to buy packaged food proved to be a fun challenge. Over the years, I have slowly changed my lifestyle to be what I though was as environmentally friendly as possible but this week made me realize there is always something else I can do to help to planet in my everyday life. This week brought to light all the little things that I do that actually affect the planet although I never thought of them in that way. Surprising things about this week were realizing how small changes make big differences. By not using the plastic containers in Slayter, I am reducing the demand for them, which in the bigger picture reduces the petroleum demand. These little planet conscious moves all add up to help more than I thought they would! It makes me optimistic that if more and more people start making these changes in their lives that the future of the planet will possibly be saved. I guess that is a bug dream to extract from just the tiny changes we are making but as we all know, everything is connected. Another surprising thing was how much information there is to process when thinking about my impact on the earth. Literally, we must go through each and every step that some food, packaging, or product goes through in our head before we buy it. That was humbling, to say the least. It takes more energy to make a lower impact, but I think it is worth it in the end. The most challenging goal to meet was waste because I make it all the time and rarely think about the little things like floss or q-tips. The bigger stuff like plastic water bottles or cardboard boxes were easy, however those small pieces of waste are the ones I usually forgot therefore made it harder to remember to keep track of. The easiest goal was water use because I try not to use a lot anyways. I took shorter showers and showered fewer times than I would have in a regular week. Although my hair is a bit greasier, I will continue taking showers that are less than 5 minutes. Also, I will continue to monitor my waste more closely because I have learned this is a big part of my daily impact on the planet and that needs to change.  I cannot decide if it is easier to slowly add the lower impact actions or do it all at once. I think this depends on the time scale. Over a year, like Beavan, I think it would be better to slowly assimilate but for us I think it might be more drastic and effective if we went full fledged the first day. The experience would be more shocking I think. However for the less willing souls it is probably a better idea to gradually build onto the no impact idea. Thanks for all the awesome posts you guys, this was a fun week!

Megan Hart