So, for the sake of being optimistic that I'll start getting new readers with the help of all these bloggers' aids, I thought it might be nice to introduce myself to those of you who are new, and give you a little insight into why I'm here.
I'm 24. I live in Washington DC now, but I grew up in New Mexico and went to college and most of high school in California.
I moved to DC after I graduated from college and have been working at the international headquarters of a large environmental/conservation organization. In college I created my own major combining sociology and environmental studies to study the cause/effect relationship between media, consumerism and the environment, and that topic continues to be my passion today. My life goal is to address the social and environmental problems with over-consumption and mis-consumption, but I'm still figuring out how best to do that. The trendiness of the green movement started just after I graduated, but boy would that have been a great thesis topic.
What am I doing personally to address my environmental concerns? Well, in addition to working for a good cause 40+ hours a week, and spreading the good word through this blog, I try to make lifestyle choices that let me tread lightly in every way I can. When I moved from Southern California to Washington DC I gave up my car (I donated it), and I rely on the DC metro system to get everywhere. So I don't own a car, and I live in a lovely little apartment with my charming boyfriend Mike. When we do need a car, we try to always get hybrids from Zipcar. We don't own a TV and we took out the AC units from our windows to enjoy DC summers al natural. No small feat, I assure you. We use homemade science projects involving vinegar to clean the apartment instead of store-bought cleaning products. We bring our own bags to the grocery store, we recycle everything that can be recycled, and we reuse everything that can be reused. Our drinking glasses are old salsa jars and the vast majority of our furniture was used when we acquired it- all but two items, in fact. We're serious packrats, and we tend to fix or find new uses for broken items instead of throwing them away.
We're not perfect, and there are many life changes I have yet to make to be even more sustainable. Some of my green goals include:
- To be better about shopping for only locally-sourced food. I go to the farmers market a couple times a month, but I don't go as often I could or should, and at the grocery story I could be much better about the things I buy. (I do buy mostly organic, but organic food from Chile or Australia is probably ecologically equivalent to non-organic food from Delaware based on the carbon footprint of getting the food from producer to consumer. I think.)
- Growing my own food. I've got a tomato plant, a small fig tree, and several chili pepper plants growing in the apartment, but so far they don't really produce much, and it's quite challenging to do more than that without any sort of outdoor space of my own. I am on the waiting list to join a community garden near my apartment, but I know that won't materialize for a a few years at least. I would love to have a yard.
- Tied to the point above, I wish I had a place to compost. I know there are apartment composting kits out there and I've tried homemade makeshift equivalents, but in the end I had no use for the end product, so it was a moot point.
- Eating out at restaurants and air travel are the two biggest contributors to my carbon footprint, so I need to cut down on both. I'll be posting more about these in the near future.
- Eat less meat. I was raised by a vegetarian so I've never eaten a lot of meat, but I still eat some and I know its not good for the environment.
- I'm planning to go back to grad school next year for environmental science and policy. I'd like to understand the science behind my environmental convictions, and I think being more informed in that way will make me a more effective environmental steward, so there's a goal.
Ok, that's all for now... it's nice to meet you, and welcome to Sincere Green!