Sunday, October 10, 2010's 10/10/10 Day of Climate Action... the wrap up

10/10/10 the 40º weather is putting a damper on the 45 mile bike ride I had planned. Now it's time to implement plan B!

10 for 10/10/10: Keeping it local today, with 10 simple climate actions you can do at home...

10/10/10 #1: Even though it's dipping down to the 40ºs today, no heat! Throw on a hat indoors and an extra fleece instead.

10/10/10 #2: In order to warm yourself up when it's 40º outside, 2 hours of vigorous raking keeps you from having to a) drive to the gym and b) allow the lawn to not get strangled by dead leaves over winter.

10/10/10 #3: Prep the outdoor worm bin for winter use indoors!

10/10/10 #4: make the outdoor compost pile for yard waste:

10/10/10 #5: Help keep your favorite waterbody clean. (thought my lake was pretty clean, 1 quick trip out to 2 coves: 6 aluminum cans, a coffee tin, a styrofoam bowl, 2 plastic bags, 1 plastic water bottle and a broken Timex GPS(!?)

10/10/10 #6: wash in cold—90% of energy in the washing machine goes to heating the water, and pressing the cold/cold button saves as much energy as "driving about 9 miles in a car or the production, transportation and storage of a six pack of beer." (

10/10/10 #7: Turn off that dryer! (a bit of a cheat for me, since I haven't used a dryer since 1998, but it's so easy to do, even without a clothesline.)

10/10/10 #8: Put the car in park! Rather than drive 45 miles (round trip) today for some socialized activism, I decided to stay home and focus my attentions on local changes.

10/10/10 #9: Clean up your 'hood! 20 minutes on the side of a busy roadway and I filled 4 bags of trash and recycling.

10/10/10 #10: and when all is said and done, just keep it simple and relax... it takes considerably less energy to just enjoy what nature gives us rather than to run around trying to keep up with life.

Monday, October 04, 2010

God, I love the dump.

I mean I realize that’s not a phrase you hear everyday (or even once a decade) especially because most people these days don’t even come within miles of the dump any more. And to be honest, my ‘dump’ isn’t even a true dump, but a delightfully titled ‘Transfer Station’ where town residents bring all sorts of unwanted items to transfer onto the next station… whether it be the actual dump, the recycling facility or someone else’s living quarters. The great part about having to package up and carry your waste to a separate location is how conscious it makes you of how much you make. When you drop another bag in the bin and then drag that bin out to the curb once a week, you don’t think twice about how much is in the bin, much less where the contents go once the bin is returned to you empty. Having to put that bag in your trunk and then drive it down the street, well, that’s another story. When I see that my bag is joining the hundreds of other bags of my neighbors, I have an instant reminder of how dirty trash can be—take a deep whiff, that smell only gets worse the more people add to the pile. Right next to the compactor is a little area where people drop off usable items that they no longer want (sort of an in-person Freecycle corner). Head to the recycling area and you’re responsible for sorting your cans, paper and plastic… but turn the corner and that’s where the real fun begins. Piles of scrap wood, appliances, toilets, furniture (all categorized but free for the taking if it’s something you want) And on Sundays, I’ve seen people just hanging out sitting in the furniture section, shooting the breeze…when’s the last time you got social about your garbage? I think the only way we’re going to be able to solve our trash crisis (and thus the environmental crisis) is to make everyone more conscious AND responsible for the waste they create.