Saturday, December 13, 2008

Enviro Confession

Ah, the environment. You know how there are these bajillions of things we should all be doing to care for our planet, and reduce our impact? I do some of those things, more now than ever since I have so much free time. And since we live in Japan, where the garbage must be righteously sorted and taken out 5 days a week, and where electricity is EXPENSIVE. Alot of my choices are utterly selfish, motivated by our finances and health more than anything. It's amazing how often self-interest lines up with environmentalism.

And yet, there is so much more I could be doing for the Earth. So many modern conveniences I don't forgo, and shortcuts I can't help but take. I'll write another time about what I DO do, but here's the dirty laundry: the enviro-don'ts in my world.

1. Public transportation and biking. Yeah. I use the trains from time to time, but for running to base or a friend's house? It's the QE2 almost every time. And it's a gas guzzler.

2. Airmail. This is a BIG one now, for obvious reasons. But I'm sure there are things I could buy locally, like flour and pantry basics, which I buy at the commissary where everything is from the States. All it would take would be an hour at the grocery store with my very understanding neighbor, but the commissary is RIGHT THERE.

3. Water usage. Okay, this one is hard to admit. But I'm guilty not just of a long shower, but of turning on the hot water*, five minutes before I get in, to let the floor and the room warm up a bit. I KNOW! So bad.

4. Power hogging. Oh, and I think our giant TV and two video game consoles, and speakers, and etc. probably count here too.

5. Coffeecoffeecoffeecoffeecoffee!! Yeah, we're both total addicts. And we don't buy organic or shade-grown. So thanks for the joe, (former) rainforests!

That's all I can think of at the moment. What are your environmental cheats, or little habits that you just don't want to break?

*When I wrote this, I typed "turning on the hot weather" without realizing my mistake. Paging Dr. Freud.


KCB said...

I'm with you on coffee. I was buying organic, shade-grown until the economy tanked--now I'm thanking the former rainforests right along with you.

My real biggie, though, is having to give up on the outdoor clothesline I've used for the past 7 or 8 years. My allergies have got so bad I have to either dry stuff indoors or in the (shudder) dryer. So on the one hand, I can breathe. On the other, I'm helping destroy the atmosphere. Pffft.

EmilySullins said...

Ooh, that sucks about the clothesline! The Japanese have hanger thingies outside that I use instead of a clothesline, plus a rack inside. We're lucky not to have outdoor allergies.

But with the rack I still have to use a dehumidifier, so there's still electricity involved. Ugh.

clembo said...

"What are your environmental cheats, or little habits that you just don't want to break?"

I swim in mine. Unless you count living off the fruits of nuclear power. Maybe poisonous waste for 10,000 years IS worse than heating my oversized pool. Now I'm depressed.

Be sure to ask us what we do RIGHT. Soon.