Everyone is doing it....politicians, scientists, bloggers, neighbours.....so now it is my turn. What they are doing is making lists...lists of what to do for our planet, our futures, our existence.....and what not to do. There are thousands of lists and they all differ slightly and some are good and some are just advertising rubbish to sell green products. My list is short and simple:
Take responsibility for everything you do, buy, use, say, think, are....everything...eg:
- Grow nearly all your food, nearly all the time. Learn to cook from scratch.
- Eat feral meat.... no farming, helps native animals and our environment survive.
- Have a solar hot water heater and buy 100% green power for the rest. Get up and go to bed with the sun.
- Buy by location rather than price - clothes, food, goods. Refuse transported goods. Buy local, swap stuff, make your own. Choose a few luxuries and stick to them only....I choose bananas, imported coffee, basmati rice and some spices.
- Refuse processed foods that have more than one ingredient eg only buy dried fruit or flour or cinnamon. Don't buy fruit bars, pancake mix or flavourings etc. (Dried fruit from the local farmers' market are just grown and picked and dried and brought to the market. But fruit and nut bars require factories and trucks and ships and plastic and chemicals and supermarkets etc)
- Re-use everything. Be inventive, creative, have fun with making-do.
I thought of this because I heard the rubbish truck go by....we hadn't put our bin out again.... because we hardly have any rubbish. Some people in our street have 2 bins....If we put it out and its not full, the truck has to stop, pick it up, put it down, move off again...all using more energy than if we wait and use the service only when we need it.
Sure, I have just come back from 26,000 miles plane travel, in 11 planes, several trains and 7 cars. No way round the facts!
But nearly all our school holidays for 20 years were spent at the beach 2 hours drive from home, swimming, snorkelling, walking, paddling boards, sailing Kermit our dear old catamaran....not a motor in sight....or a shop.
There are hundreds of things to put on such a list but the most effective thing to do is to take responsibility for what and who you are and do. When you die will anyone care if you had a new handbag or a matching phone or newly painted house? No. But they will remember if you were generous with gifts of baskets of produce from your garden or home-made jams or little seedlings for their garden or a kind word and time to listen. Funnily enough these are also the planet-saving actions....
Responsibility is a big word and it has big ramifications.