Friday, August 7, 2009

My Own Two Hands

I'm listening to the radio. I'm pretty bored.

I wish I was wastin' away in Margaritaville.

Jimmy Buffet is a lucky bastard.

No, instead of wastin' away in my flip-flops and sitting in a chair on the beach, I am here at work with this annoying pain between my shoulder blades because I don't sit right. I've been here since this morning (8 am-ish, to be precise), and the sky was all blue and pretty, but now it's getting all cloudy. Bleeeecccch. I'm supposed to go to a fair with Nicky, so I'm really hoping the rain holds off til tonight.

Eh. I've decided to share some crazy eco-facts I read in a nifty little book I bought (The Green Book by Elizabeth Rogers and Thomas Kostigen) at the zoo on Wednesday. It inspired me to start washing my hair with Burt's Bees shampoo and conditioner and to try to shave at least a minute off my shower time every week.

Here's a few:
*On average, you create 4.5 pounds of trash every day. Over the course of your life, that will total 600 times your average adult weight. In the end, we will each leave a 90,000 pound legacy of trash for our grandchildren. (Kinda makes me think of the trash cities in Wall-E)

*Americans use at least twice as much water and energy per person as anyone else in the world.

*If all American households reduced their food waste by 25 grams per day, the savings would be enough to provide three meals per day for a whole year to each of the 1.35 million children who are homeless.

*Each American consumes an average of 2,200 standard two-ply napkins per year, or about a little over six of these napkins per day. If everyone in the United States used an average of one napkin less per day, more than a billion pounds of napkins would be saved from landfills per year. A stack of napkins this size could fill the entire Empire State Building.

*About three billion new books are sold per year, requiring 400,000 trees to be chopped down.

I was kind of surprised by some of the things I read (according to a "green" article by Jennifer Aniston, every two minutes in the shower uses as much water as a person in Africa uses for everything in their life for a whole day--drinking, bathing, cooking, and cleaning), and it made me think of all the wasteful habits I'm guilty of. I always forget to turn the light off when I leave the room, I hold the refrigerator door open longer than necessary, I take half-hour showers...It all adds up.

It's like that Jack Johnson song..."I can change the world, with my own two hands...Make it a better place, with my own two hands." It takes just one person to start making small changes to inspire others to make a huge difference.


  1. Ah, green never goes out of fashion. Those facts are shocking though. I am going to be more careful about water, energy and waste from now on.

    On a lighter note, "Each American consumes... a little over six of these napkins per day." Made me think that Americans enjoy eating napkins!


  2. You do have to wonder though where they get these facts. Do people really use that many napkins? Seems unlikely to me. The message is spot-on though.

  3. We've started to try to get more green around our house. I was using a crazy amount of water bottles.


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