Thursday, October 15, 2009

Theme Thursday = Climate Change

In the spirit of going green, I'm recycling a post
I did on this subject back in July! LOL! I'm leaving the
comments because some of them are
really great....from both sides of the debate.
So, how seriously do you take this?
I guess I do a few things, but I haven't completely
bought into the whole plan. I've heard that cattle give
off a larger footprint than humans. And I'm not convinced
on the global warming...I mean, we just had
a summer that is about 20 degrees cooler than
usual! 2008 was the coolest year worldwide on record
in the last decade! The protestors in D.C. this
spring were picketing in a snow flurry.
Still, I'm keeping an open mind and I do think
there are things we can do to preserve the earth.
I like the suggestion that we plant a tree for each
one taken down. I like the recycling plan and
do participate with our trash collection.
I have in the past year switched to cloth grocery
bags! When I do get plastic bags,
I reuse them to line smaller trash cans around the house.
But I just can't
bring myself to use the compact flourescent
energy-efficient bulbs! Not only do they make
everything in your house look green,
but the mercury which forms part
of the bulb is pure poison. I read this week that
mercury mines have been reopened in China
to meet the demands of manufacturers and
Chinese workers have been poisoned. Safe
disposal of the bulbs seems to be a problem, too.
So, we use the old and try to turn them off when
they aren't in use.
One other thing that I do is use dishtowels
instead of paper towels. Any spills are wiped up
with a towel that goes into the wash. I never buy paper plates or cups.
Maybe that will make up for the
32,000 diapers we put in landfills with 4 boys!
I saw a man interviewed on the news not too
long ago. He was asked what he has done to reduce
his carbon footprint. He said that he sold his
car and uses a bike. He uses water from a huge rain
barrell on his property. He tries to eat soley from
his garden. He does not have air conditioning.
And he only showers once a week.
Hmmm. No, I'm definitely not that committed!
So, what do you think? Do you have some
easy practical ways to recyle and save, or
do you think it's all a bunch of hype?
(**all info taken from wikipedia "global warming"**)
If you want to join Theme Thursday or read other's
posts today, click here.
  • Controversy
  • Logic
  • Impact
  • Melting
  • Al Gore
  • Temperature
  • Energy
  • Carbon Dioxide
  • Hypothesis
  • Arguments
  • Nitrous Oxide
  • Global
  • Emissions


  1. I tend to believe that we haven't been keeping weather records long enough to be able to theorize that earth is on the way to global warming. Also, I believe God is sovereign and in control of the world He created. I think our fate is in His hands but He did create man to be the keepers and preservers of the earth. And we aren't doing a very good job of that.

  2. The Government over here have a website which you can use to calculate your own carbon footprint. You input information about gas and electricity usage, travel - all that kind of thing and then divide by the number of people living in the house. The first time I tried this the result was pretty bad, with us notching up the carbon footprint of a brown bear. Then I remembered to add Amy the dog into the divisor calculation (she lives in the house after all) and things were a lot greener.

    Do I believe the whole global warming thing? The jury is still out but there seems to be a fairly strong case.

  3. You have an Aldi in the US? That is news to me, that is a German chain.;)) I do my weekly grocery shopping there every Friday and I always reuse the shopping bags; I always bring my own.
    I follow you in this sentiment, I am trying to improve on my recycling.
    My Irishman is much better; he is very keen on making the best he can, recycling everything from paper to glass.
    I too can not imagine living like the man you describe.;))

  4. I'll bet that guy doesn't have a wife...

    I've got a link to calculate your "footprint" on a recent post of mine about trash, if anyone wants to really feel the guilt!

  5. "Living With Ed" on one of the cable channels is a very good ongoing show about reducing one's footprint. It was conceived and produced by Ed Begley Jr who has been a green activist/conservationist/electric car proponent ever since I can remember...well, for the last 15 yrs or more. It's a good show, has simple ideas, and they are doable.

  6. I am with you on having some skepticism about the extremists. I am in no way ready to become a Freegan but am willing to do many things to help maintain God's earth.
    I did NOT know about the mercury in the energy efficient bulbs and that is a BIG concern for me!

    With a large family, I try to be aware to reduce, reuse, recycle!!!

  7. Way before all this sort of stuff became fad, my family religiously recycled and I still do that. I use wash rags and dish clothes rather than paper towels and used to use clothe napkins all the time as well as recycling my plastic bags.. I am pretty conscientious about the amount of water I use too as I know it is limited. So, all in all, I do things that I know are an issue for fact, such as preventing landfills being used up too quickly and considering lack of water here. But the rest of it I think is politically motivated and a lot of unproven hype--they make the results say what they want them to say. to consider otherwise in science to day is like being someone claiming the world was not flat to the church way back when. You will be duly silenced!

  8. I did not know that about CFL bulbs - they are almost the only kind we have in our house right now :(

    We use cloth napkins. I have a car but I don't drive much.

    I guess I could do a much better job of being green - but I am not convince of global warming either.

  9. love this ~we try hard to be this way...recycle all paper and have a huge compost for all fruit, veggie, coffee, egg shells etc...

  10. I really enjoyed this post. Thinking green can almost give you a headache with how much is out there, all the websites, books, etc... I think small changes will make a difference and if you feel you are making a small contribution - than you are fine. Some people are taking it a little too overboard. and I love the cloth shopping bags, although I always forget to bring them with me!!

  11. Steviewren ~ I totally agree. I doubt that we are going to heat up to a complete blowup. But...one look at our landfills and you have to think we need to do something better!

  12. Alan ~ when I calculate our footprint, I'll be sure to add Nugget to the calculation! :)

  13. Rhonda ~ yes, be careful with those bulbs. You aren't allowed to throw them out with your garbage. I think Home Depot accepts them back for proper disposal.

  14. I was ahead of the time because I started using cloth towels when we got married. I have only used paper towels for things that are a necessity. And the back of your hands work well as a napkin, just kidding, well sorta not. But yes we used cloth ones for years. But someone hid them and so now I use the extra ones that fast food places hand out. It saves money. We switched the bulbs right away when they came out, but I do use one normal due to the lampshade cannot go on the other ones. We have a large compost pile, we recycle everything possible. I am even taking the water from my ice packs and using it on my houseplants or the plants outside. I have almost even used my bath water to water them too. California is in a major drought. I time when I water the grass and water it less often. I use cloth grocery bags, but also get the plastic ones that I reuse in the smaller trash can. Normally I would keep the Air Conditioner on a higher temp, but since the surgery I just cannot. But we do turn it off in the evenings if it cools down enough. I pull out all the chargers unless the item is being charged. We replaced all of our appliances with energy star efficiency ratings. I drive as little as possible, some weeks not at all. I do not even have the stereo system playing during the day time. Just total silence. We turn out lights when we leave a room. I am not sure how much more we can do, other than to put solar panels on for our electricity and we cannot afford that right now. Oh yes, I only wash the dishes when dishwasher full and keep dry cycle off, they have to air dry. And when I rinse the dishes, I just have the water on really low. I wash and dry full loads of clothes.

    I do not think that there is much else we can do and I refuse to be a Freegan. I posted about them a few months ago. Oh in the winter we use the fireplace to heat the house as much as possible. So if anyone has any other ideas about what I can do please let me know.If it is reasonable I will try it. And my husband totally believes that global warming is a farce and has turned into a way for Al Gore to get rich, I now agree. Which is what he is doing. And now more and more scientists are coming out to say there is no such thing. I do these things because I feel it is the right thing to do. Oh and my back yard is dirt and weeds to conserve water for the drought. I pray for El Nino to come back.

    God bless.

  15. I do what I can without going overboard. We recycle our plastics, and since we go through a gallon of milk a day with our large group, that adds up. We don't buy water bottles very often and use the filtered water from our refrigerator instead. Our soda bottles have a deposit on them that we pay here in Michigan when we buy them, so we return them to the store to get the refund.

    I do buy the light bulbs. I hadn't noticed the green hue, and I am a little sensitive about that. I'll have to notice a little more and make sure. I did know they had to be disposed of differently, but since they last so long I haven't had to worry about that yet. We do have a few lights that we use regular bulbs in, and then the ones high up in the ceiling that I don't want to change often get the other bulbs. It does bother me about the Chinese factory.

    We accidentally got a gas stove and dryer instead of electric here, so maybe that reduces our footprint. I'll have to see. I know I'm not good about water usage. I don't turn it off when I brush my teeth. It's an OCD thing. I can't.

    I think the whole global warming thing is a bunch of patooey.

  16. Our son and daughter-in-law have tried converted us to be more Green. Both of them have a Masters Degree in Biology, with a minor in Environmental Biology!
    But for me, I believe that God has a plan and I'm trying to follow His plan. I think I'm more frugel then Green.

  17. I agree with Stevie and you, Betsy. We can do little things to help preserve the earth. If everyone does little things they add up to become big things.

    I'll keep using my cloth grocery bags and rags, recycling, reusing, and repurposing, however, I will not voluntarily give up my air conditioning!

  18. MG, I agree....AC and showers daily for everyone here! LOL.

  19. i didn't know that about energy-efficient bulbs.
    :-( its hard to know what to do, isn't it?

    there do seem to be more people using cloth bags not plastic over here too - good to see any signs of hope, really

  20. we have taken many of the stpes you have...no paper products...recycle ( got the boys to paint the box, which was fun and got them involved...), we watch the amount of water we use and conserve energy where we can...global warming or not...what we leave behind the next generation will have to clean up.

  21. I'm with you. I don't buy bottled water, I recycle, I tried the bulbs but hated them, I got a fuel efficient car, I drive less or at least try to make an effort to consolidate errands, go easy on paper towels, don't buy paper plates, cups, styrofoam, check out books from the library. What else can a girl do?

  22. Absolutely global warming is a reality. You can't judge it on one city's climate. God wants us to take care of the earth, not destroy it, that's why He gave us the brains to figure this out more than 30 years ago, it's just taken an awful long time to even start to convince a handful of people.
    The amount of mercury in the CFL is negligent compared to the carbon dioxode that is released daily by the tungsten bulbs. You should switch to CFL or even better, keep your lights turned off and use natural light.
    Good for you for switching to cloth towels instead of paper. That was hard for me too. This year in January I fished out our "heirloom" cloth napkins and various napkin rings. Each member of the family has a different styled napkin ring. Everyone uses a cloth napkin at every meal for a week and it is washed once a week instead of using paper napkins. I have washed all my clothes in cold water for at least 20 years and dried all but my husband's work shirts outside on the clothes line. Installed a programmable thermostat that helps keep house cool or warm when needed but not overtax energy when not.
    Xeriscape your lawn with native plants so you're not overusing water on fancy plants that aren't well-adapted to your region.
    Shop at thrift stores for used clothing and then you are helping out a local charity and avoiding the import of clothing most likely from China, one of the most polluted countries in the world, both actually and in the way it treats their workers. God I would hope wouldn't want people treated that way.
    If you can, become a vegetarian. That is an easy way to quickly lighten your ifoortprint on the earth.
    Shop at local farmer's markets if possible, and buy organic. Despite what recent news posts may tell you about it being the same nutritionally, organically grown produce and meats will be grown without pesticides and hormones and growth enhancers, etc that ultimately do harm you and the earth.

  23. leadstory ~ you have some good thoughts here! You know, when I stopped buying paper towels, cups, plates, etc and shopped at the thrift stores, it was to save money...no necessarily to be green. Nice that it can be for both! I have begun to wash in cold water when possible and we don't ever water our lawn. Not sure if I'm ready to give up eating meat, though! :) Thanks for joining in the conversation!

  24. I am all for the garden usage. It has been easy not to use the air conditioning this much this summer. I also like to compost my kitchen scraps. The biggest project was to salvage all of those little trees from our field and transplant them. Later we found they were northern white cedar...same as the logs we used to build our home.

  25. WHAT??!! the bulbs...i must check what we have...i know it's some weird looking "energy efficient" ones...aye aye aye...my house doesn't look green...oh now i am totally freaking out!! HAHA

    i haven't "gone green" bc for any other reason other than i don't want chemicals in my house...and i believe we are supposed to take care of the gifts God has given us...if i had my way we'd be on a homestead pedaling for our own electricity each day...BUT...that's not bc i am worried about global warming...it's bc i think that's the idea of a "perfect life"!!

  26. I turn off the lights when I leave the room, and I try to limit how much water I use. I turn up the AC as high as I can stand and I put aluminum foil on the windows that face the sun in morning and afternoon. I save money and I guess it helps the environment an infinitesimally small amount...but it helps.

  27. I believe global warming is simply a fantasy. God created the earth. And He is sustaining it. I'm not concerned.

  28. I use a green cleanser in my house cleaning business, and around my own house as well! We have been using cloth napkins for 6 months and they go in with the towels once a week- so I am not using extra water or energy. I have used the A/C but not like crazy this year. And my lawn never gets watered-unless it rains. My grass gets a little brittle, but is still there the next year.
    I think there are too many mountains of garbage not to recycle- and do so whenever possible. I do not compost.
    My mother in law has been recycling newspapers for 50 years- before it was popular and she has a huge garden upstate which she uses her compost to fertilize.
    We can all only do so much.
    Thanks for this article!

  29. Recycling posts!?!

    Now THERE'S an idea!

  30. Kris ~ well, I do what I can! hee!

  31. I liked the comment you left on Brian Miller's post.

    I think the planet is a lot bigger than we give it credit for and we are a lot smaller than we like to believe!

  32. Mmm ~ you know, maybe I'm more green than I thought...I did take a horse drawn carriage to Willow's ball! ;) Maybe Her Majesty will let me keep it a bit longer instead of me using our minivan!

  33. lol. perhaps she will betsy...for some reason T wont let me convert our cars to camels...

  34. Ready, willing and able
    To take to my table
    Things that are fresh
    And not processed.
    To eliminate cans,
    Boxes and bands,
    Can be a fact, not a fable.

    Happy TT

  35. Hi. Thanks for visiting me on the day of The Ball, allowing me to come over and meet you. Four boys, you say? My best wishes! I love how you reasoned out how climate change is affecting/not affecting you. I hope you don't mind if I join in now and then.

  36. Lakeviewer ~ Of course I don't mind...please join in! The more the merrier, right? :)

  37. That is why climate change is the new word...we are changing the weather. Up here in the Northern West of Canada our winters are way warmer...our summers are way cooler and wetter...except this summer which was hot and dry and had fires burning up the forests everywhere!

    Our springs stay later, and they really aren't even spring...rather left over winter. The animals are confused. The bugs are multiplying eating the trees which die and then are fodder for forest fires...

    it is all amuck.

  38. A lovely post. Except for the showering once a week part, I think that man ad it just about right. He could use his rainwater to shower then use the used shower water for his veg?

    Interesting to see Al Gore on your list. I often wonder what would have happened if he had had power instead of Bush?

  39. I like the acronymic piece, Betsy. I agree with you on the bulbs--just break one (which one of our cats did) and then try and clean it up according to environmentally friendly rules. Not easy! (Downright scary too!)

  40. Jasmine ~ actually, I read an article in prep for this post that compared Al Gore's carbon footprint to George W. Bush's back in 2007. Mr. Gore's was so much bigger. Interesting fact in light of his warnings of global warming.

  41. it's hard to do it all...recycling is a good start; i try to separate out all the cardboard and paper as well

  42. Nice collection of thoughts, Betsy. I guess the bottom line is we should all do something, no matter how small at first, and work our way up. But individuals can't do it alone. Government's have to get serious about reducing emissions.

  43. Interesting post. I agree with some points and not with others. My daughter was the spear-head of the canvas bag push in our home. Only thing is that I wish some of the associates at the market didn't seem to have a 'tude when I present them to be filled.

  44. Wings ~ well, good for your daughter! I didn't think I would like the canvas shopping bags, but ended up thinking they were great! Too bad about the crummy attitudes of the clerks. My Kroger gives you 3 cents off for using them.

  45. Great recycling of a post, Betsy. My best to you and your five men.

  46. I don't know either way whether or not Global warming is a natural occurrence or if the Earth's temperatures have anything to do with it. I just look at it logically. All the waste and trash and exhaust, and factory smoke have to have some negative effect on something somewhere along the way!

  47. Betsy, this was a very interesting post...I certainly believe in sound conservation of our natural resources. I don't use paper plates or napkins and I conserve water and energy ( though, I also hate those energy efficient light bulbs that make for the worst lighting). We don't use pesticides and garden organically. With all that said, I am also skeptical of extreme views and a lot of the claims that, as MMM so elquently put it, are being politicized.

  48. I prefer the term Climate Change because a warming planet will have different effects on different parts of the globe. It's not just about an increase in temperature but overconsumption and waste. Even the smallest contribution can have a ripple effect (also like the way you even 'recycled' the post!)

  49. i bought inexpensive blue and white bar cloths at sam's club and use those exclusively in the kitchen to replace paper towels. i request paper bags instead of plastic at the grocery and then use them in my collage art. i loved living in the small town where i raised my kids in indiana. i could walk everywhere including the library, post office, grocery, etc. plus i was able to pay all my utility bills in person -- only 2 blocks from my house. now i have to drive everywhere. i don't like the green cast of the fluorescent light bulbs either but my hubbie replaced them anyway. big sigh!


I'm serving coffee! Stay and chat!
And no awards, please! Your comments are my awards!