EARTH DAY - What are you doing to better the environment?

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by Backyard Buddies, Apr 22, 2007.

  1. Backyard Buddies

    Backyard Buddies Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    I've always tried to be conscious of the environment, do my part, not litter, etc. But, in the past year, I've been making more serious strides to not contribute to the problem. I'm looking for more things to do to help. I thought Earth Day would be a nice day to explore this together. What are you doing to lessen your negative impact on the earth?

    Some of the things that I've done are:

    - I've begun switching my light bulbs to the energy efficient models that use much less wattage and last for 6+ years. I just need to remember to dispose of them in the environmentally hazardous bin that I keep for batteries and such due to the mercury content in them.

    - I've started a compost pile that I then recycle into my gardens in order to use less water.

    - I no longer use chemical fertilizers and/or bug repellents. I now use only organically certified products.

    - I am trying to "shop local" as much as possible for my food. I've found a wonderful local farm that sells organically grown food. Not only are they not polluting the ground with chemical farming techniques, but by buying local I'm not contributing to more petroleum usage because my food is not being shipped long distances.

    - I'm grouping all of my errands and will put off running one until I have another errand to do in the same area.

    - My husband is now riding his bicycle to work (2 miles each way) in order to not use his car, get exercise, etc. He's looking great! [​IMG]

    - I'm running full loads in the dishwasher and laundry, trying to dry more items on lines rather than in the dryer.

    - We're taking shorter showers, have taken the sprinklers off of the automatic setting and are watering according to the weather, and are shutting off the water when brushing our teeth.

    - We're shutting off our lights and other electrical equipment when not in use. In doing so, we shaved our electrical use by 30% last month alone!

    My next goal is to purchase reusable bags for grocery shopping use. Next time they ask, "paper or plastic" I want to be able to say "NEITHER!"

    So, what are you doing in this regard? Thanks in advance for your suggestions, ideas, and most of all, for doing your part!
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2007
  2. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    Very good, Backyard Buddies. And Happy EARTH DAY!!!!
    I also group the errands.
    We use the "twisty" lights.
    I have the curtains open so I don't have to turn on the lights as much.
    Turned down the temp on the thermostat and also on the hot water heater.
    We compost.
    I grow veggies in my garden. Can't afford tomatoes any other way these days. [​IMG]
    You don't need fertilizer if you have chickens. I put that in the compost bin to age a bit...
    We recycle our papers and plastics.
    I Freecycle our outgrown, unused items to keep them out of the dump.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2007
  3. Backyard Buddies

    Backyard Buddies Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    Awesome Spotted! And Happy Earth Day to you too! Isn't Freecycle wonderful?!

    Your curtain suggestion reminded me of another one I do. I keep the blinds closed on warm days on the sunny side of the house to block out heat and I open them on cooler days to not use the heater.
  4. thechickenfarmer

    thechickenfarmer Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Happy Earthday to everybody!
    We do all those things too and am putting a much bigger effort this year into shopping locally. We recycle all that we can of course but I'm frustrated that our town only recycles #1 and #2 plastics with cans and glass, also newspaper/magazines. I took my boys to Nantucket for a vacation last summer and my eyes were really opened about recycling. Boy that island really takes recycling seriously. The owner of the house we stayed in asked us to go to the dump before we left. My boys had a blast sorting all the recycling....they recycle everything!!!!! There is even a section for used items to give away. I loved it!

    Today I walked a 2 mile loop from my house with my 2 year old and we picked up all the roadside garbage. I still can't believe people chuck things out their car window!

  5. pansophia

    pansophia In the Brooder

    Apr 19, 2007
    I too am on a quest to live a greener life.

    -Just started a compost bin
    -Planning to set up a rain barrel so we can use rain water to water plants
    -This will be my second year with an herb garden
    -Also planning to have a small veggie garden
    -Trying to buy local food from small farms (There is a new fabulous market across the street from my job that is all local organic and transitional products, once they open that will be my main grocery stop!)
    -Have finally found good water bottles to bring when I get my daily iced coffee
    -Set up recycling bins at all my work open houses
    -Using no chemicals in the yard and garden
    -Using natural cleaning products, homemade whenever possible
    -Just plain trying to buy less - I've put myself on a craft supply moratorium!

    There's still a lot more to do. I want to start reusing bags at the shops and being sure to bring the plastic bags back to the store's recycling bin. Hopefully hubby is going to transfer to a store much closer to home to save some gas. We've also got a pile in the garage to FreeCycle when we get to it.

    And most importantly - soon we'll have the most local eggs possible!
  6. KrisRose

    KrisRose Songster

    Mar 9, 2007
    Davison, MI.
    Buddies- those energy efficient bulbs have Mercury in them???
  7. Backyard Buddies

    Backyard Buddies Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    Great ideas! It's wonderful to see what everyone is doing! You're inspiring me, and I hope that others will be inspired as well. I love the local trash pick-up idea! Today is coop cleaning day, but if I still have energy after that, I'm going to take my kids out and do the same.

    KrisRose - Yes, they do. I just picked up my free one from Home Depot today (check to see if your HD is offering them today. Free is good!) The side of my container says, "Contains Mercury. Dispose according to Local, State or Federal Laws. See: . Or call 1-800-378-6998."
  8. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Crowing

    DH and I have decided to make it a point to recycle, reuse and save money/the environment.
    - We just started composting. I feel so much better throwing stuff in there rather than in the trash. I'm also starting to dump the horse manure in a section of the yard so I can turn it over and eventually use it.
    - We planted tomatoes, bell peppers, cilantro and basil, and we're going to also plant corn and watermelon.
    - We've bought a whole house fan and two portable swap coolers so we don't have to use our A/C.
    - We use our eggs as barder. I have a friend at work that grows avacados, so we will trade. I'll also trade eggs with someone at work for oranges and grapefruit that is home grown.
    - We reuse all of the grocery bags that we get.
    - Our city has a great recycling program, and we take full advantage of it.
  9. pansophia

    pansophia In the Brooder

    Apr 19, 2007
    Speaking of composting - if we use pine shavings as litter, can they get thrown in the compost bin?
  10. Backyard Buddies

    Backyard Buddies Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    Quote:Sure can! [​IMG] Today I did just that. I dug my veggie beds, added the compost that I had made from pine bedding, chicken poo, grass clippings, and kitchen scraps, and started a whole new round of compost after cleaning out the chicken coop. The compost I get is a beautiful, rich, dark compost. Chicken poo pine shavings are awesome!

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