Well, it’s over.Â All the winter holidays I know of except Epiphany and Valentine’s Day have come and gone.Â I still have a few more scheduled hours at the department store, but the holiday season is over.
The real issue for this time is a fresh new year full of possibilities.Â An opportunity to try new things, create new habits and overcome bad ones.Â Many people make (and break) the same resolutions every year.Â My personal repeatÂ is to stay in better touch with friends and family.
May I suggest some eco resolutions for the new year?Â Well, I’m going to, anyway.
- ALWAYSÂ use your reusable bags.Â The farmers at the market expect it.Â Â My regular grocery encourages it withÂ a large sign in the parking lot “Did you remember your reusable bags?”Â Â In other stores, clerks seem surprised when I pull a bag out of my purse and hand it to them, saying “Please use my bag.”Â Team ecoetsians makeÂ reusable bagsÂ in every size, style and color imaginable.Â Try fashiongreentbags,Â Johnsonfamilyzoo, BoutiqueLittlePeople, and zJayne.
- Start composting.Â I live in the city and don’t have a big garden because my husband works at aÂ fruit market.Â But we have a compost pile and use it for my organic herbs and for flowers.
- Eat less meat.Â Drop meat from one more meal per week andÂ you can help the planet and also your health if you substitute a healthier option.Â if your family complains, try using less meat.Â Soups and stews are meat (and money) stretchers.
- Use low VOC paints.Â I haven’t tried these, yet, but my next paint job will be with these low toxic emission paints.
- As always, in winter, keep your house at 68 degrees or lower and wear sweaters, sweats or whatever you need to keep warm.
- Turn off lights.Â My roommates and I fined each other a quarter for a light left on when we left the room for more than 5 minutes in one apartment we rented.Â The money went on the electric bill.
- Contact your newly elected officials and let them know that you support legislation that is environmentally responsible such as improved public transportation.Â And while they’re at it, you’d like their administrations to reduce waste by reducing, reusing and recycling.
I know a lot of you can come up with this many eco-resolutions and more.Â Let us knowÂ how you plan to decrease your carbon footprint in 2011.
Happy New Year!