Day 34: Green Starts at Home!

Act Locally!

DAY 34 ACTION: Channel that anxiety about EPA’s future into one of these simple green actions. You’ll feel better, and you might save money!

Home-made compost bins come in all shapes and sizes. Bonnie Plants made theirs out of wood and hardware cloth. You can also use cinder blocks, milk crates, or old garbage cans.

Protecting the environment, one household at a time.

Yesterday, Scott Pruitt showed up for work and lectured EPA staff on the “rule of law” (which is also the name of a Koch Brothers funded group that Pruitt ran while Attorney General for Oklahoma). EPA staff described the talk as condescending and dismissive of their work. This comes just after transition leadership called for cutting EPA’s budget in half, and Trump floated plans to kill key Obama initiatives such as the Clean Power Plan, a rule to cut carbon pollution from power plants.

EPA could have a rocky road ahead. While we track that situation, we might feel better taking action where we can. Now is the time to lock in and build on environmental progress in our communities, our states, and the marketplace. Today we’ll start by suggesting a few ways to reduce household impact on the environment. Pick one for your home!

1. Compost your food scraps. In 2012, Americans threw away 35 million tons of food and food scraps, accounting for 20% of all landfilled waste. That organic waste takes up a lot of space, and emits methane, a powerful greenhouse gas. Plus, food waste is what makes your garbage smelly! The alternative? Try composting! Depending on where you live, you can compost in bins or trash cans in your backyard, in a worm bin under the kitchen counter, or at your local farmer’s market. Check out this list to see if your community offers curb-side pickup!

2. Can it. If you buy soda in plastic bottles, strongly consider moving to aluminum cans. Plastic can only be recycled a time or two, before it becomes too degraded for use. And too much plastic ends up in the ocean. Aluminum, on the other hand, can be recycled again and again with no reduction in its quality. There is a robust market for used aluminum – the can you recycle today is likely to be back on the shelf as another aluminum product in the next 60 days!

3. Dial it back! Turn down your heat (or edge up the AC) a modest amount, and start saving. You save 3% on your heating bill for every degree you lower the thermostat. If you leave home for 8 hours a day, install a programmable thermostat or manually reduce the heat by 7-10 degrees before you leave, and save 10% on your bill. Spend some of your savings on a pair of cozy slippers!

Today’s Action: Pick one green action for your home – and tell us about it on FB, Twitter or Instagram!!


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