Saturday, April 17, 2010

Going Green Today and tomorrow, too

I was going to skip it this year, but I didn't. I signed up for the 30 day "Going Green Today" project through my employer's wellness program. Last year I felt that it was rather redundant for some like me, a mom/teacher/ blogger/ gardener who already incorporates a lot of eco-conscious habits into everyday living.

They made it easy and paperless. I signed up. After the start of tracking green behaviors, I decided to focus on a specific area every day.

One day I reached for the maximum (nine points) by using only one-point activities. Another day I counted only activities at work; another day only that which occurred at home.

For example, I earned 3 points for re-using paper at work. That was too easy; I often copy on the backs of used paper. I filled the remaining six with single point items: using recycled paper, turning the computer on sleep mode, using white boards or slates (chalkboards), turning off my computer at the end of the day, reusing packing materials, and reusing office supplies (never throw away a paper clip).

On the home front, I reported a 3-pt. car tune-up (recent, not today, but it counts), a low-flow showerhead also for three (chosen for our upcoming remodeling project), and for one point each: donating used items instead of throwing them away (to purge the closets before the closet remodel), using biodegradable cat litter (rabbit litter, in our home), and finally, filling the dishwasher full before running it.

Yesterday I decided to focus on big actions that I've done in the past, actions that provide an opportunity to be green daily. Four points for starting a compost pile; I started it years ago, use it daily, and added a second bin last August located so that I can fill it all winter. Another four points for insulating our water heater; we bought a new insulated water heater recently. I'll check next time I'm in the basement; if it's an Energy Star appliance, I can count it for four points some other day. Third, but not least, I added one point for using my Starbucks thermos rather than getting a disposable cup every day.

The project is not a contest. The goal of participating is to build good, green habits by paying attention to everyday actions. I'm fairly green already, so I participate to challenge myself and validate my choices. Next week maybe I'll focus on putting a twist on regular actions - taking a daily behavior and tweaking it up a notch.

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Blogger Shari said...

It's always good to know you are doing something right, isn't it? Congrats!

4/17/2010 9:19 PM  
Blogger Royal Ranch said...

What a great program! Even if just to remind you of what you are already doing right!!!

4/18/2010 6:39 AM  
Blogger Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Yes, some of us would have to make it harder to keep that interesting!
I brought a haul over to Habitat ReStore on Thursday. The wonderful unused things I found in our garage! Much of it in original packaging!

4/19/2010 12:58 PM  

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