Thursday, 3 January 2008

What can you do?

New Year resolutions are all very well, but is this the best time of year to try to change something about yourself?

If you're in the Northern hemisphere the depths of Winter are here, and you just want to be comfortable, South of the Equator it's Summer and you're having too much fun to change your ways.

Most successful changes I've made have been around the Equinox - March or September. Maybe it's that sense of balance that make resolutions easier to keep.

Things I'm still doing more than a year down the line include getting milk delivered rather than buying from a supermarket, always carrying a sturdy shopping bag with me, composting as much as possible, use a whistling kettle on the hob rather than an energy hungry electric kettle, keeping a separate recycling bin (on average four times as much goes in this as the rubbish bin) and changing to a non-chemical toothpaste.

One thing I intended to do but fell through was to get an old fashioned push-pull carpet sweeper and use that rather than a vacuum cleaner. But the new place we live only has carpet on the stairs. However, I have resolved to use a dustpan and brush, and only vacuum as a last resort.

All little things, but all go towards reducing my drain on energy resources.

But I still aim to improve. I now have a wormery, so even less food waste will have to be put out for collection. We're constructing raised beds at the allotments, and as no dig systems and forest gardens require copious mulch, all paper waste will be shredded and used there. Changing to milk delivery rather than shop bought means that I no longer have access to vast amounts of plastic bottles (which would go for recycling anyway) but those that do are not passed on unless I can find no way of re-using them.

And the heating only goes on when we REALLY need it.

All these improvements and I don't think we've felt any inconvenience.

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