Thursday, October 15, 2009

Just Do One Thing

Bloggers around the world have been asked to participate in the 2009 Blog Action Day today. We have been asked to dedicate today's blog to Climate Change.

Grams is not an expert on Climate Change. Sure, I've listened to Al Gore speak about global warming. I watched An Inconvenient Truth. I'm aware of efforts to save endangered species. The only remaining flock of Whooping Cranes winters near my home in South Texas. Grams has been aware of ecology and somewhat informed about climate change since I was in my teens many years ago. I was a sophomore in high school when Earth Day was first celebrated.

The challenge to blog about Climate Change made me stop and think about it. It seems that a chain of events has already been set in motion. It's clear to anyone who is paying attention that the change has already started. We're all hoping that it's not too late. If we start again today, can we change the inevitable or is climate change a forgone conclusion? Isn't the problem too big? Will I be able to make a difference? What can one person or one family possibly do about Climate Change?

Grams certainly doesn't have all the answers. But I know that one person and one family can make a difference. Here's what Grams and Grandad already do.
  1. We have replaced our disposable, one-time use paper napkins with washable reusable fabric napkins. They don't add anything to the laundry we're already doing and using them saves a few trees.
  2. We have our own green bags that we keep in my car so we can use them whenever we shop. I even have two little ones that fit in my purse for anytime I just run in to pick up one or two items.
  3. We keep our air conditioner set on 78 degrees in the summer and in the winter our heat stays at 67 degrees. Since South Texas is hotter than the face of the sun, this is the biggest sacrifice we make, but it also saves us a bunch on our utility bill.
  4. Grams has replaced disposable plastic storage and sandwich bags with reusable containers.
  5. Grams buys fresh produce instead of canned goods. There's less waste with no containers to dispose of.
  6. Grams buys local produce whenever possible. It's healthier, it's good for the environment and it supports local farmers. The fact that is tastes better is an added bonus.
Grams hasn't quite mastered the art of unplugging all the appliances that are not in use, but I pledge to work on that one next.

None of these things are hard or expensive or that big of a deal ... but they make a small difference. And that's what it's all about. If everyone will just make a small difference, just change one or two things in your own home, together we can make a difference globally for Climate Change in a positive direction.

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