Ecological Footprint

Earth Day is on April 22nd, but the entire month of April is full of earth inspired events and a general focus on getting “greener.” I decided to take the ecological footprint quiz by the Earth Day Network. If you haven’t taken this quiz before, I would encourage you to give it a try. It’s actually very interesting.

Apparently the average ecological footprint in the US is 24 acres per person. When I saw that my ecological footprint is a mere 13, I was about about to toot my own horn. But then I kept reading…With an ecological footprint of 13, there would still need to be 2.9 planets to keep me in the lifestyle in which I’ve become accustomed. Not so good.

So, I’ve decided to look for ways that I can do better. I already recycle paper, glass, and aluminum cans; I bring reusable bags to the grocery store; I am replacing my old school light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs as the old ones die out; and I am in the process of planting a garden. I know there must be a ton of basic steps that I can take to be more environmentally friendly. I’d love to hear your ideas!

  1. I recently purchased about 15 reusable canvas grocery bags. Let me tell you what an enormous difference this made in the amount of plastic that goes out of our house now. Amazing!

  2. I started paying my bills online. I made a request to each company to stop sending paper statements and only receive them online now. Some companies offer some type of bonus or store points when you do this kind of thing. When I do buy paper products I try to make sure they are made with recycled materials. We camp a lot in the summer and last year decided to forgo the paper plates and plastic silverware. It only takes a minute to clean the dishes! Also try buying cloth napkins instead of paper towels.

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