I don't really have a lot to say about climate change that others who know a lot more than I do won't say better. But I can talk about some personal changes that have occurred over the past couple of years.
About a year ago, I was attending an adult discussion group at a UU church I was considering joining. The congregation was in the process of launching a major initiative to take themselves as much "off the grid" as possible. And nearly everyone in the discussion group was avid about being green. They were recyclers, solar power enthusiasts, hybrid car owners, and apostles for change. I found it a little disconcerting. I felt woefully under informed and under committed. Plus, I wasn't convinced, despite Al Gore, that climate change was an issue that was going to garner commitment from the mainstream, despite the group's insistence that the times they are a changin'.
One year later, I don't know much more. I don't know what my carbon footprint is, though I know what that means. I was convinced back then that climate change was important and ruining the environment. But I didn't really think I could make much difference. But something clicked and I started making little changes. Here are some of the things I've done:
- I changed nearly all the bulbs in the house to energy saving fluorescent bulbs. I don't mind it takes a few seconds for the light to get bright when I turn them on.
- I print out a lot of paper when I do my job. When I edit, even when I edit Web content, I need to print it out to do the final edit in hard copy. I still print it out, but instead of throwing the paper out, I turn it over and put it back in the printer to print the next file on the back.
- When both sides are printed, the paper now goes into a brown paper bag (unless there is confidential information on it) that gets set out to be recycled on recycle day.
- As often as I can, I empty my shredder into a brown recycle bag that I put out on the curb for recycling.
- I found Greenoffice.com that sells recycled materials where I now buy as much of my office supplies as I can.
- I put plastic jars and cans that have grungy stuff in them that I can't rinse out into the dishwasher so I can put them in the recycle bin when they come out.
Those are some of the things I do. There is more, but the point is even a little bit can make a difference, especially if that little bit makes me more aware of what more I can do. Each one of us needs to look at what we do, and then do what we can to make a difference.