Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Earth Day 2008

Every year for Earth Day we try to come up with two or three changes we can make that will either have a positive impact on the earth, or make our family footprint just a little smaller. This year we have decided to tackle one easy goal, and one HUGE goal.

For our easy goal we are going to make an effort to recycle every last bit of paper that we can. We are already pretty good at recycling metals, plastics & glass... but for some reason our paper waste makes it into the trash nearly as often as the recycling bin. This will take a conscious effort on our part, but it needs to be done. The impact is far too large for us to ignore any longer.

Now for our hard goal, we have decided to target our electronic addictions. I turn the computer on every morning at 8am, and it isn't turned off until 9pm at the earliest. Certainly I'm not at the keyboard every hour of that time, but because it is already up & online I DO spend far more time than I should... and it's sucking electricity that entire time regardless of whether I'm at the computer or washing dishes. The kids also have an hour of computer/video game time each day, and then there are all of the "educational" television programs... AND our movies. This adds up to altogether more "plugged in" time than we are comfortable with. So from now on, no electronic devices will be turned on until noon Monday through Friday. Likewise, everything will be turned OFF by 8pm 6 days per week. AND we are reinstituting our electronics-free day every Thursday.

This will add up to 39 less hours that we are running electricity for any of these toys - and that much more time that we will have to do "real" things for our entertainment each and every week. Over the course of a year, we will be consuming a minimum of 2028 hours less energy! So I won't be online as much, but this is going to be a very good change for our entire family. Wish us luck!

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