Celebrate You and Me

Kansas in December

Today is Earth Day.

I've been watching Discovery Channel's eleven part series planet earth.

For whatever reason, I never seem to catch the episodes when they first air, but I've been catching a lot on the weekends. It is fascinating and makes me wish I had a larger television with HD capability.

I'm watching an episode now that I haven't seen. They just had a breathtaking, unbelievably difficult and rare shot of Angel Falls. For some reason, I've been a little obsessed with the waterfalls located in Venezuela. It's on a list (which only exists in my head) of things I'd like to see before I die.

The program is a reminder of what it is that we're destroying.

You'd think the way I spout off now and then about what we're doing to our planet, I'd be a better environmentalist.

But my secret shame is that I'm not. I buy processed food and don't recycle the way I should.

What has kept me from being the environmentally friendly person I'd like to be?

Being environmentally friendly is hard work. And I'm notoriously lazy. It's much easier for me to just drive everywhere, rather than walk the miles to the closest Target.

And Wichita isn't exactly the most environmentally friendly town. We don't have all the resources of more conscious cities.

Which makes it pretty expensive to stay eco-smart. It's more difficult to find organic food. Which seems silly in the middle of farmland, but drives up the prices of anything organic that can be found.

Granted, just being a one-person household means my footprint on the world doesn't count for a lot. But after taking this quiz, I've realized I really need to change my ways.


Two and half planets? I'm a hog!

I'm not completely horrible. I use rechargable batteries. I quit buying pop so I didn't have the pileup of cans as I did in the past. I turn off things when I'm not using them. I even turn off lights in the homes of other people when they usually leave them on. I don't really think about it. It's just habit!

During this last year, I have changed all of my most-used light bulbs to GE Energy Smart™ Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs. I was pleasantly surprised to see they really do make quite a difference!

I don't use a lot of electricity, since all I pay for is the electricity I use from lighting, electronics and small appliances. But my bill has dropped by ten dollars. Ten dollars doesn't seem like a lot, but my bill is usually $30-$35 and $7.50 of that is a mandatory customer charge. And this month, my KWH has dropped by more than half! I went from 282KWH with 9.4KWH/Day to a mere 138KWH with 4.6KWH/Day.

Sure, the bulbs are more expensive, but they last a lot longer. And with the cut in my electric bill, the bulbs have paid for themselves. Go ahead make the change.

Although I recently bought a couple of these nifty trash cans from The Container Store, I'm going to try to cut down on the amount of plastic shopping bags I get. I pre-ordered these handy bags from Delight, since I missed getting some during the two hours before they sold out. If you'd like some of your own, pre-order some using the coupon code from Shelterrific to receive twenty percent off the already low price.

So today is a beautiful, yet terribly windy, Earth Day. In the words of Amy Poehler, "Suck it, Neptune!"

No comments: