Today is Blog Action Day and the topic is climate change. My thanks to Alan over at Roberts Roost for inspiring me to participate. The way it works is that bloggers all around the world write on the same issue for a day.
I think of myself as environmentally aware; I recycle and try to minimize my carbon footprint. However, I'm not doing as well as I thought. According to the carbon calculator on The Nature Conservancy (TNC) site, I generate 26 tons of carbon dioxide annually; the national average for an individual in the U. S. is 27 tons; the world average per individual is 5.5 tons.
There are many carbon calculators online that provide you with a ballpark figure of your carbon footprint (all the greenhouse gasses you emit or that are are emitted on your behalf). The Mother Nature Network has identified the top 15 carbon calculators, just click here. I selected TNC because it also offers concrete actions that you can take to offset your carbon footprint.
My biggest use is energy consumption in my home. I've replaced some lights with energy efficient bulbs but not all. I plan to remedy that this weekend. I do set my thermostat low in the winter; I don't mind being a little cool, but I confess that during the summer, I blast the a/c. Next summer, I'm going to set the thermostat higher.
My city provides us with recycling bins and I need to use mine consistently. There are some things that I have already done that lessen my carbon footprint. I've gone paperless; I pay all my bills electronically and I do all of my banking online; my paycheck is on automatic deposit. I send e-cards for birthdays, anniversaries, congratulations, etc. I buy locally as much as possible; my favorite place to shop is the state farmer's market which happens to be located in my city. I try to plan my errands so that I can do them on my way home from work rather than make a lot of repeated little trips. When I go to the grocery store, I take my own canvas bags. They are much stronger than plastic and reusable.
Participating in Blog Action Day: Climate Change has made me seriously evaluate my individual efforts to combat global warming and to live green. I know that I can do more. I encourage each of you to do as much as you can; the more that we learn, the more effective we can be in combating climate change. There is a wealth of available information just a mouse click away.
My great nephew is 9 1/2 months old. He's the joy of my life. I want him to have a world where he can run and play outdoors the way that I did many years ago. I don't want him to have to buy his water in plastic bottles. I want his sky to be blue, his earth green, and his water drinkable. I see my efforts to do my part to protect the earth as a sacred trust owed to the generations that follow.