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Monday, April 21, 2008

It's Not Easy Being Green

It seems that everywhere you look people are saying how they are "Going Green". I thought it meant something similar to what happened to me the 9 months I was pregnant, but aparently it is a good thing. "Going Green" means doing things that are environmentally conscious. I think much of it stems from people's fear that greenhouse gas emissions are destroying the Earth's atmosphere, or some silly thing like that. They drive cars that burn corn oil, use solar panels to heat their ovens, even wear clothing made from bamboo! Many of these things seem a little far-fetched to me, actually. I don't believe the Earth's atmosphere is disintigrating, or that we can do anything about it if it is.

However, I do worry about overflowing landfills and daily human waste. I don't like to see those plastic grocery bags swirling down dusty streets, like modern-day tumbleweeds. So, I was happy to find that I am already "going green" in many areas when I read an article in the "Parade" magazine that came in the paper this week. It was titled: Better Ways To Go Green, and talked about how people are trying to be "greener", and the ways that are actually better for them than the current trends. (Yes, I believe many of them are trendy!)

Firstly, it says that using sturdy, reusable totes are better for the environment than paper or plastic bags at the grocery store. Ha! I purchased about 5 of these reusable bags in a moment of sheer "green-ness" a few months ago! Now if I can just remember to get them out of the trunk and take them in the store when I go. I only remember after I have a whole cartfull of stuff and am in too big of a hurry to run back to my car to the the dang things!

Redecorating in eco-friendly furniture vs. refurbishing old furniture: Ha! again!!! The article says that refurbishing is "greener".I haven't purchased a new couch for 10+ years!!!! I have recovered it several times, and recently made some very stylish new pillows which look quite professional, I must say! (do I still get green points even though I tossed the old polyester filled pillows into the garbage which will go to the landfill? At least I didn't burn them, releasing toxic polyester fumes into the atmosphere causing the ozone layer to suddenly rupture and cook us all like turkeys in our own homes!)

Driving a Hybrid SUV vs. a smaller hybrid, or driving less: Well, we are already green there- we don't even own an SUV! And, although we don't own a hybrid of any kind, we are contemplating removing the floor of my husband's old Nissan Sentra and driving it "Flintstones" style. It should surely save on gas, although we'd need to replace the rubber soles of our shoes much more often, causing the deforestation of many rubber trees in foreign lands- but it's not like we'll ever go there and fill up their dumps with our stuff, either! Seem like a fair trade to me!

And finally, using Bamboo clothing vs. "Classic, timeless pieces made from quality fabrics" (as they put it): Well, I must say, I feel a bit pridefull in saying that I am TOTALLY green in this area! I've never even seen an article of bamboo clothing! It doesn't sound very appealing to me! I have a pair of polyester pants that I've owned for over 10 years now, and they are indestructable, which means I will probably be wearing them until I am too old to get my leg up into them anymore. Of course, it also means they won't biodegrade, but I can just pass them down generation to generation and everyone can experience the pleasure of my polyester pants! "Erin's last will and testiment: I hereby bequeath my black polyester pants to _________". Now, if passing on a legacy like that isn't green, than I don't wanna be green!!!!


BugHunter said...

Normally I'd lay into any reference of "going green" with mean old facts like: How much gasoline is consumed growing and processing the corn used to fuel a car with corn oil.

In this case I'm more curious about the tote bags for groceries. If I were to use one of these reusable bags, what would I use as the garbage can liner in the bathrooms' garbage cans? Which is better, using plastic grocery bags in my little garbage cans, or using reusable grocery sacks, then buying liners for my little garbage cans.

Erin Evans Taylor said...

That's a good point. I save up my plastic bags thinking I'll use them as can liners- but I usually forget. My garbages often go "comando" (if that term fits?). Maybe we should be burning our trash in our back yards like in olden times.

Jess said...

I agree this whole going green thing it is a terrible trend that has no real impact on the earth. I love the Earth though. I too am interested in the whole canvas grocery sack. I would need like 20to do my regular shopping and by the time I put that many in the cart I won't have room for my boys and my purse let alone my groceries!