Blog Action Day 2007: Talk Is Cheap

October 15, 2007

Today is Blog Action Day, a day where thousands of bloggers post about and/or donate their earnings to various environmental causes.  Now, I’ve never been one to obsess over the state of the environment (my particular sort of bleeding-heart liberal guilt tends to steer me more towards causes that have an immediate impact on people and animals), but it’s obviously a worthy cause – and more pressing than most of us think.

Instead of talking about global warming or any of the other horrible, very bad things that are currently happening, I’d rather be action-oriented.  I’d rather talk about things that we can do right now to effect change, as opposed to worrying about things that none of us can help.  The organizers of Blog Action Day have created an excellent list of fifty quick, painless ways that you can help the environment today – and I’ve added a few of my own.

1.  Buy fewer, better quality items.  I’ve mentioned this before, but really, wouldn’t you rather have one or two really great pairs of boots/coat/set of sheets than lots of cheap crap? 

2.  Instead of only buying organic products, look at what has the least amount of packaging.  Yes, those organic veggies might be better for the environment alone, but when they’re resting on a bed of styrofoam and coated in plastic, whatever “green-ness” they may have is canceled out.

3.  Kick your bottled water habit.  People, it is water.  Can you really taste the difference?  Even if you live in an area where the tap water sucks, get a Brita filter or something, and refill your water bottles.  The planet – and your wallet – will thank you.

4.  Live a little smaller.  This one is probably not possible overnight, but drive a smaller car (do you honestly need an SUV?) and live in a smaller space.  You’ll use less energy, and there’s the added bonus of your car/house being much easier to maintain.

5.  This one is kind of a reach, but adopt a pet from your local animal shelter instead of going for a pure-bred.  There are tons of adorable critters that are just waiting for a human to love them, and you’ll help with the whole animal overpopulation thing (every little bit helps).

It’s easy to buy a trendy organic cotton t-shirt or shop at Whole Foods, but if you really want to help improve the environment, we all need to alter (a few minor aspects of) your everyday life.  Talk is cheap, but if we all pick up a few new positive habits, maybe we can change the world.

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