Monday, October 12

Alter-Eco Project

I know I have "talked" green before here - in regards to more eco-friendly cleaning products, buying reusable snack bags & sandwich wraps (one which I have with me today!), Telluride's Freebox, buying in bulk, reusing furniture, and more. Fellow blogger, Ellis (and daughter of my former boss in Savannah), has gone "green" with gusto after a terrible encounter with overly packaged crackers (her first post explains it all). I have really enjoyed reading her blog and seeing how this Mom of two is making the switch to "go green."

While I like to think that we are pretty darn good, I know I still have major strides to make in becoming earth-friendly. Telluride is easy to be green in many respects - you can walk anywhere to want, no pressure to shop/be trendy, and everyone here is really good about reuseable cups/bottles. The bad part is there is no local food, you cannot buy in bulk (3+ hours to the nearest bulk health food store), and recycling is dismal. So, how to balance the need to be green is tough as we live in a totally unsustaniable location to begin with.

Two of my favorite inspirational "green" stories are that of "The Story of Stuff" and "No Impact Man." Any inspirational favorites in your worlds?
What do you all do to be green? Any tips?


Rebecca said...

thank you for this post. I have been thinking a lot about how to be more green. I try to focus on little things for now - like you said - snack bags, water bottles, reusable bags at grocery, bringing my own coffee mug. We planted our garden outside (peas, arugula, spinach, mixed greens, lots of herbs) and I really try to use my bike as much as possible. I also think having clothing exchanges, thrifting, freecycle can all help. I want to try to think more big picture esp. when we remodel or get a new home. Thank you for these links - going to read through them today.

CathyP said...

How are you doing with those wraps? I am into them...but wanted a review before I bought.

I am a pretty nutty fact I learned that here at work the recycling is fake! Like the bin says plastic, but really it is all trash....I am mad and yes I have contacted people about this. This means I take it all home with me, and recycle there. I also tell people when I see them "recycle" that it is fake. Just writing this makes me so mad!

I think the biggest/hardest thing for me is bottled water. I literally feel sort of ill if I buy bottled water. I love sparkle water I have to figure this out ASAP.

SF has started city-wide compost program that is "mandatory" I am not sure though how they are mandating it... Our building has disposals, but we have a compost bin as well. Do you guys compost and if so what do you do it in?

Sonchia said...


First - I am digging the wraps, like a lot. I use them a ton. They can fit weird depending on the size of your sandwich, but the velcro stays tight. They are easy to wipe out too.

I was recently at dinner with friends & we got free dessert (random - I know). Anyway, we couldn't possibly eat it all (a shame - again, I know) and a girlfriend wanted to take home the remaining piece of chocolate cake. I wouldn't let them bring a "to go" box as I thought it was such a waste. So, I pulled out my empty sandwich wrap from lunch and wrapped the puppy up. The table was mortified, but it worked! The wrap apparently got pretty gross after spending the rest of the evening in my girlfriend's purse, but she ate the cake & threw the dirty wrap in the laundry the next day. It came out as good as new - simply perfect. So - all that said, I would recommend buying a few.

DO NOT buy anything with oil cloth. Though easier to wipe out - they are bad news from a health standpoint (I can send you more info if you are interested). The ones I bought are lined with washable nylon which, in all the research I can find, is food safe. Just a tip from me to you.

Ok - moving on...

I have always suspected that big buildings throw everything out together. Seems too convenient. Good for you for saying something & making sure your own recycling gets dealt with properly.

I cannot buy bottled water anymore. I always travel/go everywhere with a Kleen Kanteen bottle. We actually have about a million of them around the house. They are great. I too have a big thing for sparkling water. I try to buy it in glass bottles though and recycle those. Not sure how to best deal with this situation as I am just as guilty.

And - nope, no composting happening here in Telluride. I am curious to learn more about how SF is making this happen though. Keep us posted.

My next "green" project is to stop using paper towels. We have reduced our usage by a LOT, but we are still guilty. Any ideas? There will be no "cold turkey" thing happening here. It is a serious addiction.

Sorry for the long comment!

CathyP said... I did not grow up with paper towels(or a toaster). I know that sounds reallllllly strange. We had them, but they were in the utility closet on a shelf that I could not reach and we just didn't use them. If you go to my moms house now, you would really have to look to find one.

My mom has always used my dads old undershirts as rags. She cuts them into "towels" and uses those and sponges for all cleaning.

I really try to use cloth, but Keith loves paper towels. I can't even put papertowels out on my counter...never have been able to. I think paper towels are so convenient esp if you don't have your own washer/dryer.

Last note on recycling at work: The thing that makes me boil about this is that we aren't in a big building! We are less than 200 total people....and we are spread out....oh i am so mad (as I take a sip of coffee from my thermos).

Off to buy some wraps! XO