Friday, August 24, 2007

Environmentalism and Us

Kathy and I seem like we're on the cusp of something that seems like more than a phase, but because we're generally so bad at following through on our "grand plans," it may ultimately turn out to be only a phase. The thrust of our intention is trying to become significantly more environmentally conscious. Doing things like trying to reduce, or better yet, eliminate the number of plastic bags we use and generally reduce the number of disposable products (and even containers) we buy (definitely trying to avoid bottled water). And buy more local foods (particularly produce). And buy fewer "things," especially new stuff. And get rid of a goodly amount of our stuff.

Kathy's bought washcloths that we're trying to use instead of paper towels, and nylon bags instead of plastic ones. This past weekend we took those bags to Eastern Market (although the temporary building doesn't re-open until tomorrow, there are plenty of vendors lined up on weekends) and used them for the fruits and vegetables from West Virginia and Pennsylvania. Later, we used canvas bags when we did a grocery run.

I don't know how far we'll get (or whether I'll revert to being a relative Environmental Inactivist), but the fact that we pretty much independently reached similar conclusions bodes well for our willingness to pursue this path. We're not looking to be radical (yet), and we recognize that whatever we do is a fraction of what we could do. For instance, we still use plastic bags (I have to clean up after the dogs somehow), our house is woefully energy inefficient, and we're still using disposable diapers. At the same time, we figure that every little bit helps.