Today is Blog Action Day and I am joining with more than 15,000 bloggers to blog today about the environment.
The environment—such a huge subject, and one I am not qualified to talk about in scientific terms. But it is something that is on all our minds and I think we can all do small things to help. Even if you are still not convinced that global warming is being caused by human action, you still must realize that the earth's resources are limited and human action has definitely negatively impacted the quality of our air, our water and our food supply. Personally, I think the evidence of our role in global warming is overwhelming and it scares the beegeebers out of me. So, while I help to support the scientists and initiatives that will make the essential huge differences, I am trying, in my own life, to make small differences.
You may remember the grocery totes I made several months ago. These will save trees and resources if I remember to use them. There's the problem! Ray and I each carry one of these bags in our cars and we repeatedly forget to take them into the store. Maybe this will help.
By the way, if you want my pattern for making my grocery tote, just email me and I will send it to you in pdf. form.It wasn't that many years ago that no one ever needed bottled water. Now it seems like everyone you see is carrying a plastic bottle of water. I always seem to have a half-full one rattling around in my car. No more. We have good, clean water coming out of the tap in our kitchen. I just bought us each a nice refillable water bottle. I will feel good about not contributing to the mountains of empty plastic water bottles. If I can remember to use mine.
We have been planning to either build or remodel a house to suit our needs, for some time. That time has finally come. We've been thinking about this for a long time and several years ago I found these two books that promote a philosophy that makes such great sense to me.
Sarah Susanka, an architect, writes about building houses that are "not so big." This doesn't mean you cram yourself into a tiny little space, it means you plan your space for the way you live and eliminate wasted space. She, like me, has a particular distaste for the multitude of "McMansions" springing up all across our land, with towering ceilings and huge entry halls that dwarf the human scale. The idea of living rooms that never get lived in and houses so large that family members can spend whole days never encountering one another is not only wasteful and blatant consumer excess, it produces houses that never feel comfortable, cozy or easy to live in. As we plan the remodeling of our new home, I keep going back to these books for ideas. I like the idea that we are taking an old house and updating it—recycling it, if you will. It will not have everything we ever wanted in a house, but it will have what we need and then some. It will not require bulldozers and tree removal and the loss of yet another square of woodland or farmland or meadow, but will reuse land that has been occupied by humans for more than 50 years.
These are small things I am doing for the environment, as well as trying to be responsible by driving a reasonably efficient car and recycling and trying to use what I have before buying more. It's probably not enough, and I will be looking for more ways to reduce my personal impact on the planet. I'd love to hear what you are doing.
Links to other Blog Action Day posts by art quilters: