thinking global, acting local

Various fruits and vegetables for sale at Pike...

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i’m trying to be more environmentally conscious when it comes to the decisions i make regarding the day-to-day stuff of life.

while i’m not a “tree-hugger” by any stretch of the imagination, i find myself wanting to do a better job in doing my part to make this world a greener place:

  • we only own one car
  • we use public transportation to get to/from work and use it whenever possible

lately, we (my lovely and i) have been trying to reduce the amount of waste we produce (starting first with our workday lunches) – we now use tupperware for our sandwiches instead of ziploc baggies, reusable lunch sacks instead of brown paper bags, and only try to purchase products that are conscious when it comes to the amount of packaging used for their product.  i plan on bringing in my own set of silverware to work so i no longer have to us the plastic utensils that are thrown away after a single use.

we’re trying to eat locally – food produced within our home region rather than items trucked in from halfway across the country. (supporting local farmers in the process) we’re beginning to shop more at farmer’s markets (there are plenty in seattle – many year-round, too), and we’re looking into joining co-ops such as full circle  for our produce.

this is the only planet we’ve got, and i want to do my (albeit small) part in making this world a better place on many different levels.

in what ways are you doing your part to help the environment and local businesses?

traveling mercies,
jdh

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7 thoughts on “thinking global, acting local

  1. I’m a bag fanatic, with serious bag guilt. Ask Jenna– I have bags with me practically everywhere, and I wear them out. Just bought two new beauties in dusky grey that fold up into three inch squares and hold all my groceries. I pick up destructive trash wherever I see it. No car– I walk most days, go further via transit or the occasional family carpool. I recycle at home and work, wash clothes in cold water, have cut down meat to the occasional (monthly) steak, and plastic cutlery that ends up in my hands might still be in use three years later (not kidding here). Bio (and kitty)-safe cleaning products are working their way into my bath and kitchen cupboards.

    I’ll confess, do leave my computer on a week at a time, and love paper to the nth degree. But I promise I recycle my books by re-reading regularly. :-)

    • I’m a sucker for bags, too. (Though most of mine have come into my collection via the “free” route, through work, promotional events, and even a sporting event or two).
      I love not having to drive everywhere. There’s a bus stop 3/4 of a mile down the road that will take me just about anywhere I want to go in Seattle (with a few transfers, of course).
      *Love* the bio and kitty-safe cleaning products. I’ve one that I regularly use because kitty likes to explore a clean bath tub (*grin*) and the last thing I want her to do to get chemicals on her paws.
      I’m like you – I have a bookshelf chuck-full of books (though I have found myself purchasing a bit more for my e-reader lately).
      Hey, how about steak in, oh, 71 days? I haven’t had one yet this year. :)

  2. I’ve come across a few articles purporting that cutting out/cutting back on meat is as “green” as eating all your food local, and some animal products are worse offenders than others. I’m trying to recall offhand, but I think four of the worst greenhouse gassers were beef, pork, cheese… oh, there was another one, too. I’ll see if I can find the link for you. But cutting back on meat (and, sadly, dairy too) not only helps the environment (and the animals, obviously) but can inspire some serious creativity in the kitchen… it’s certainly a challenge!

    • I’d love to read the article if you can find it, G. It sounds really interesting. Giving up on meat and dairy would certainly be a challenge – and one that I would like to try (at least reducing my consumption of meat and cheeses). I think that for me the biggest stretch would be giving up on ice cream (what can I say? I love the stuff).
      I wish that I had more opportunities to be creative in the kitchen. With getting home after 6pm on most work nights, sometimes the last thing I want to do is actually prepare something that would meet my goals. Perhaps if I just got more motivated on weekends to prepare things a little bit out.
      Hope you and R are doing well, friend.
      P.S. – thanks for the heads-up on the tea. I will be placing an order soon, I hope. :)

  3. Okay, here’s an article that references the study:

    http://veggie.buntch.net/the-real-cost-of-cheese/

    The graphic is a little fuzzy, I hope you can read it all okay. The study was pretty comprehensive, basically taking a “cradle to grave” approach for 20 common protein foods: meat, cheese, beans, etc. It’s all based on conventional (i.e. factory) farming methods, so anything organic, grass fed, pasture raised, local etc. is going to have a lesser impact. Hope this helps give you some ideas… we’re really trained to have meat as our main dish! Spending some more time cooking/prepping on the weekends is a great idea, too, no one wants to cook an elaborate/unusual meal after getting home from work…

    Oh, and one more thought, I haven’t checked out this website in full, but they look to have a wide array of meatless recipes:

    http://www.meatlessmonday.com/

    • Thanks for the links. I’m excited to dig deeper in to the Meatless Monday website and try a few of their recipes!

      You and R should come up to Seattle sometime soon. We could try some of these culinary dishes out with like-minded friends.

      Rebecca found a restaurant in our area that only sources local, sustainable products (within 360 miles of Seattle, WA) for their dishes, called Local 360. I’m hoping to get to try it soon:

      http://www.local360.org/

  4. That’s awesome. There’s a restaurant in LA, I believe it’s just called Local, that has a flexible menu based on local fare… really good, gourmet-quality stuff, too.

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