Add Some Green to Your Life

At the approach of spring the red squirrels got under my house, two at a time, directly under my feet as I sat reading or writing, and kept up the queerest chuckling and chirruping and vocal pirouetting and gurgling sounds that ever were heard; and when I stamped they only chirruped the louder, as if past all fear and respect in their mad pranks, defying humanity to stop them.

Red Squirrel

No, you don’t — chickaree — chickaree. They were wholly deaf to my arguments, or failed to perceive their force, and fell into a strain of invective that was irresistible.

– Henry David Thoreau, Walden, Spring.

Today is the first day of spring, and I decided to focus on nature instead of search engines or patents or web sites.

I’ve been reading through some of the blogs listed at Best Green Blogs, and I’m finding some great writing and interesting ideas on how each of us can make a difference in the world around us.

Some of them focus upon living a more ecologically friendly and sustainable life, while others share some of the technology and gadgets that could help conserve energy or resources. I’ve added a number to my feed reader, and have more that I want to look through – so far I’ve only made it to the letter “D” in the directory of blogs.

It’s exciting to see things like a new faucet design that saves energy while saving water.

I’ve been asking myself what I can do to try to have less of an impact on the environment. There are steps that can be taken everyday that can help.

Even becoming more aware can be a good start. The Nature Conservancy has an online carbon footprint calculator which can help give you a sense of how much your life style might impact the greenhouse gas emissions enter into the atmosphere. I’ve discovered that my results are above the national average. I’ll be working on that.

Sites like A Bunch of Greens review a range of products that are safer, more environmentally friendly and considerate of nature.

Some green sites focus more upon nature and science, like Blogfish.

Some are from people who are actively attempting to make a difference, like Jeff Davis at Frog Matters, with his work for Amphibian Ark.

In a couple of weeks, I’ll be planting some trees in a local state part that is being reforested, through volunteer efforts coordinated by the Delaware Nature Society. I’ve seen a number of other volunteer efforts for other local environmental organizations that look like they would be worth pursuing.

As the leaves in the trees start turning green this spring, I want to add more green to my life. I’ll be adding a weekly post here on environmental and sustainable issues.

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15 thoughts on “Add Some Green to Your Life”

  1. Thanks so much for mention of Accidental Environmentalist on your blog. I am so happy that you have taken an interest in green living. All the best from Jolly Green Girl aka Accidental Environmentalist

  2. That carbon footprint calender is a load of baloney. I don’t drive a car and I’m ABOVE the national average? Where are they getting this magic carbon footprint # from? I’m consuming less than 99% of the people I know, and am way BELOW that number.

    I’d like to recycle more, but Newark doesn’t enforce it. To recycle, I would need a car. A catch 22 if you will. Maybe I can find someone to carpool with ;)

    I love the fact that their are people blogging about the environment. I was subscribed to the treehugger blog for a while, but they just overwhelm you with news. I wanna save the world too, but don’t have time to sift through a hundred blog posts a day to do it. Same reason why I don’t read lifehacker or some of these other uber popular blogs – there’s just TOO much content for me to handle.

    I’m looking into joining the nature society, thanks!

  3. Hiya Bill…great hearing sentiments like this from you. Raising the flag on issues which impact our near future to the extent that the survival nof our species is at stake is goooood!

  4. Bill–Thanks for nudging the “better angels” in us all as regards the environment and living green. The quote from Henry David Thoreau effectively sets the stage, and I hope you’ll include more poetry in your posts about the environment. I followed the Delaware Nature Society link and found an educational section for kids and teachers that is impressive and seems highly useful. I’m glad Eric let us know about some of the pesty blogs to avoid. I’m off to take the carbon footprint calender quiz.

  5. Thanks for mentioning A Bunch of Greens. I am happy that you are interested in the website and I hope it will help you to become a little greener everyday.

  6. @ Jolly Green Girl, Thanks.

    @Eric, I was surprised by my results on the carbon footprint calendar, too. There is a fairly new recycling program in Newark, but it hasn’t been promoted very well. Some details from the City of Newark web site:

    Does the City offer a curbside recycling program?

    Curbside recycling is offered through the Delaware Solid Waste Authority (DSWA) for a monthly fee. If interested, please call the DSWA at (800) 404-7080. However, the “Recycle Delaware” program is a voluntary separation drop-off recycling available to residents. Please contact the Public Works Department at (302) 366-7045 for the location nearest you.

    The Delaware Solid Waste Authority has more details here:

    http://www.dswa.com/programs_curbsideSignup.asp

    Good to hear that you are looking into joining the Delaware Nature Society.

    @ PeopleFinder, Thanks. I’m hoping that a few words on green topics might help raise awareness, and offer some ideas to people who visit here.

    @ Jacques. Thanks for the encouragement.

    @ tinkerbellchime. Thank you. The Delaware Nature Society does have some nice information on its pages.

    @ Lucia. You’re welcome. I hope so, too.

  7. It seems that the older we get, the worse the conditions of our societies and environment become. Either due to waste of our inner resources or our global resources.

    We can market our products, services and hoopla. Live for the here and now. Become ever more distant from things that truly matter to the future of the world and our relationships.

    But one day, when there’s nothing left to exploit and to suck dry, those that did nothing to save it will in fact be those also complaining and crying over the conditions that have led to our lack.

    It’s nice to see that you are choosing to dedicate a weekly post to green efforts Bill. Thanks for giving me some pep in the right direction this morning.

  8. Thank you, Kimberly.

    I’m looking forward to writing more on green topics, planting trees, being exposed to new ideas from the many environmental feeds I’ve been adding to my RSS reader, and sharing many of those here.

    Writing about search engines is fine and good, but it’s more important to wonder and consider the decline of honey bees and amphibians, the impact of a warming environment, and about how we separate ourselves from nature instead of trying to live in harmony with it.

    Your support means so much to me – thank you for constantly being an inspiration.

  9. An excellent post. Ah, Walden, what a beautiful read…amazing that 150 years later it still stands true on advice for simplifying life.

    The carbon footprint is meant to act as a guideline, a reminder that we can all do more to offset our impact. The simple act of making things more “green friendly” is no the answer, consuming less is.

    If your city is reducing your recycling efforts – do something about it. One person can make a difference, you know the routine (tell 2 friends, who tell 2 friends). Go to your city councilor, talk to the newspapers, petition your government. You pay taxes and have a right to request changes to your system.

    As for green websites and tools, there are tons of them, yet only climate change seems to show up in the top thousand searches every day. We can change this by posting on green topics and adding a little green to our lives every day.

  10. Simply Stephen, thank you.

    Walden was a book that one of my high school teachers introduced to our class to show us what a journal was like. It wasn’t hard to be mesmerized by the straightforwardness, honesty, and enthusiasm of the book. It’s been a favorite for years.

    Local recycling efforts need some work. Hopefully we can take some action to make it easier to recycle in my community.

    I’m hoping that I can introduce some new readers to some of the blogs I’ve been finding and reading lately, pointing out some different ones every week.

  11. One if the best ways to stop waste if not to get it in the first place. Consumers can now “opt out” of receiving telephone books at http://www.YellowPagesGoesGreen.org. This organization will contact the publishers and inform them to stop delivering books. This is a free service for consumers. http://www.YellowPagesGoesGreen.org is working with state and local governments on ordinances concerning the delivery of unsolicited telephone books. http://www.YellowPagesGoesGreen.org is not against the telephone books but against the delivery of 4 to 5 pounds of paper on people’s door step 5 to 6 times per year and being told it is our responsibility to recycle something we did not ask for. If we need a book we will call. Otherwise I “opt out” from receiving it

  12. Great green coverage! As an one man SEO and green promoter I loved seeing your post. Thanks.

  13. I love the fact that their are people blogging about the environment. I was subscribed to the treehugger blog for a while, but they just overwhelm you with news. I wanna save the world too, but don’t have time to sift through a hundred blog posts a day to do it. Same reason why I don’t read lifehacker or some of these other uber popular blogs – there’s just TOO much content for me to handle.

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