Gulf Coast Oil Leak Black (NOT Green) - Our Daily Green

Monday, June 21, 2010

Gulf Coast Oil Leak Black (NOT Green)

I've never titled a post black until today. I hope I never have to again.

The BP oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico is a glaring reminder of our constant consumption of petroleum products. While the blame scatters in different directions, depending which spin doctor or party is trying to explain, the fact remains, if petroleum were not consumed at the current rate, the need for risky methods of retrieval would evaporate.

Today, instead of asking who is to blame and why they aren't acting rapidly enough, let's make a list of ways WE can change our lives that may make a small, yet meaningful impact.

I've listed 25 small changes you can make today or tomorrow, and the day after... changes that will lessen our dependence on oil/petroleum products. The orange links are different ways I've written about "green" living and a deeper explanation of the reasons for making such choices past the bullet point.

  1. Hang a load of laundry outside
  2. Walk to an errand that you'd normally drive
  3. Rinse out and reuse a zipper seal bag
  4. Refill a reusable water bottle instead of buying bottled water
  5. Open the windows and turn off the air
  6. Eat a salad for dinner (no heat to cook!)
  7. Turn off the shower water when lathering up
  8. Invite someone to carpool
  9. Replace incandescent bulbs with fluorescent
  10. Unplug an extra refrigerator and condense everything to one. Pack it full. A full refrigerator cools just as much as a half empty one.
  11. Rediscover the old fashioned broom. Sweep instead of hose or blow off the sidewalk
  12. Carry reusable bags to the grocery store
  13. Don't forget them at the pharmacy or mall, either
  14. Look for an item for resale before purchasing new
  15. Borrow infrequently used items instead of buying new
  16. Separate your trash
  17. Invest in rechargeable batteries
  18. Turn off the lights in empty rooms
  19. Combine errands to reduce trips
  20. Add one more meatless meal to your weekly diet
  21. Don't buy single serve foods. Buy in bulk and divide into reusable containers.
  22. Buy locally grown food instead of food shipped from across the nation or world
  23. Buy local merchandise, no gasoline used to ship it to the consumer
  24. Vacuum the coils on your single refrigerator
  25. Promise to start learning about alternative fuels and energy sources.
Please add to this list, how many ways CAN we reduce our use of petroleum products, either directly or indirectly.

This diagram and video are appropriately sobering. Let's stop being victims and take charge of the change we can control. Who's in?


Lysa said...

drive 5 miles an hour slower,or more.

Heather said...

I replaced my gas powered lawn mower with an awesome reel mower from Fiskars. It has adjustable height and has some type of flywheel thing that allows for a burst of energy when you hit a tough spot, without having to push harder. I have a big yard, and it works just fine.

MandaMac said...

1. Store dry goods in glass jars and leftovers in glass containers instead of petroleum based plastic containers. Use fewer plastics altogether. I don't own a single plastic cup, plate, container, bowl or pitcher.
2. Lower your heater thermostat...use an extra blanket and wear warmer clothing.
3. Unplug gaming systems, stereos and small appliances when not in use.
4. Buy and wear natural fabrics like linen, wool and cotton. No synthetics!

Anonymous said...

Until I can get an "on demand hot water heater, I turn off the power at the breaker box to my hot water heater when I go to work. No need to heat water all day when the only "person" at home is Lucca the wonder cat. I flip it back on when I get up the next morning and in 30 minutes I have a hot shower. Then off it goes again as I head out the door.
Keep up the good work.
Tom from