One guiding thought for 2012

December 27, 2011

A couple of years ago, I completed an on-line quiz about my footprint on the planet.  It asked questions about how I live – house, vehicle, driving, food, waste and more – and then calculated how much land it takes to sustain my lifestyle.  I was shocked when it told me that if everyone on the planet lived like me, we’d need four planets.  I’ve worked really hard since then to reduce my footprint – but more recently I discovered that that ratio applies to all Canadians: if everyone on the planet lived like us, we’d need four planets.

Of course, there is only one: this fragile, beautiful, precious and irreplaceable planet.

So perhaps the best New Years resolution any of us can make is this: to strive to use less of everything, in whatever way we can.

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A trash-free holiday

For most of us, Christmas is a wonderful time for family, friends and gifting.  But unfortunately, there’s also a downside to Christmas: junk that’s often in the landfill by Easter, and the biggest pickup day of the year for the trash man.  So this year, why not give the trash man – and your planet – a break?

The Clean Bin Project is a wonderful initiative by three young Canadians to try to produce zero trash for a year. Their website has many litterless gift ideas for the holidays, such as:

  • Tickets to a theatre, music performance or movie
  • Passes to a gym or museum
  • Classes
  • Outdoor experiences such as snowshoeing or horseback riding
  • Massages or other health and wellness experiences
  • House cleaning services
  • Homemade consumables
  • Secondhand items

Read more great ideas here, to help you create more memories and less garbage this Christmas.