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Earth what?

March 31, 2009

Its 3 days after Earth Hour.

So you had an enthralling time on Saturday night. Did you promise to do it again sometime soon? Or was it just a one night stand?

I asked around, curious to see if anyone was doing a 1 hour daily voluntary switchoff, whether with their lights or PC or anything. Got a few raised eyebrows and a couple of sheepish smiles. No I didn’t do anything after that, one guy told me, but I already did my part on Saturday what….

So its becoming a distant memory. Its as if people had gone on a blind date. They whipped themselves into a frenzy of expectation, they finally meet, had a good time, and then said see ya. It felt great for a while but about that commitment…. well I don’t know.

Pity, though not unexpected.

To me, conservationism by any name is all about relationships – our relationship with the planet, of how it treats us well if we treat it well. Many people discovered this relationship on Saturday. Today, all that’s left are some volunteer-produced flyers blowing about on the sidewalk and stacks of it dumped by the cleaners. I don’t get emails on Earth Hour anymore. I see no follow-up messages in mainstream media. Even the blogs have gone quiet.

It doesn’t have to be this way but as with any relationship, you must want it if it’s gonna have any chance of working out.

Here are some resources to help you get back on track.

Carbon footprint

Carbon neutrality

Alternative energy

Environmental friendly lifestyles

If you do care, I recommend you make a resolve to do one environmentally friendly deed a day. Grow the relationship one deed at a time and I guarantee you won’t feel embarrassed when Earth Hour 2010 comes around.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. LC Teh permalink
    March 31, 2009 5:43 pm

    1. Cook enough food to feed the number of people who want to eat-in to eliminate or minimise leftovers. Save leftovers for another day. They’re still food.

    2. Collect old newspapers, cardboards, plastics, tin-cans and sell them to scrap collectors even if they pay pittance.

    3. Never dump appliances. Give away usable old appliances, furniture or clothes to charity organisations instead of throwing them out. Sell the broken ones to scrap collectors.

    4. Fold used shopping bags (plastic) and barter trade or donate them to traders for re-use.

    5. Collect used water from washing machine to mop the floors and water the plants.

    6. Stand in a basin when you shower. Use the water to flush the toilet.

    7. Don’t drive into town for just one errand. Plan it so that you make just one trip for more errands.

    8. Switch off lights and fans when you leave a room.

    9. Don’t leave the tap running when you brush your teeth.

    10. Iron all your clothes in one go.

    Some of the above may sound silly, but we’ve practiced them in our family from day one. And they’re not all. That’s been our lifestyle.

    Thanks for the tips LC. We need more people like you. There’s a mindset that those of us who lead conservationist lifestyles are stingy cheapskates or that we’re so poor we can’t afford to lead a “normal” life of overconsumption and waste. It happens mostly in young people when peer pressure is the strongest. Its a very tough mindset to break.

    #9 is pretty universal. I recommend a having a mug of water on the side when turning off the tap to cure any secret phobia of the tap running dry while you’re halfway brushing your teeth. 🙂

  2. March 31, 2009 8:19 pm

    It’s not a surprise that most people don’t do simple things like #8 and #9 in LC Teh’s list! On campus, I always encourage people to either:
    (1) not print an email or document or whatever unless necessary, and
    (2) use recycled papers.

    Hi pelf, yeah people will have a tendency to waste things they perceive as free like tap water. Funny how conservationism has been in the air for decades and yet most people still don’t see it as their problem.

    Its commendable that you’re encouraging recycling. Every little bit helps.

  3. April 1, 2009 10:18 am

    actually simple things like 8, 9 and using recycle papers, are …well…hassle free. i donno why people just don wan to do that. our company’s claim form actually just need one single printout with the receipts attached to it. yet, many ppl are using 2 or 3 pieces of papers… when i asked them why, they cant answer. =_=

    not like they got more claims than i do.

    Old habits that are not that difficult to change if they are given an incentive to do.

  4. LC Teh permalink
    April 1, 2009 1:36 pm

    Doing all that was easy when we started right from our humble beginnings. We just carried on from there. We never let progress or prosperity change us from our chosen lifestyle. I would be happy to know if others are influenced by us to live frugally and benefit the earth at the same time.

    There’s not many like you who see benefits in a life of moderation and actually live it. The middle way is a classic eastern ideal, an age-old recipe for a balanced and meaningful life. Yet most of the excesses now come from the east. Humans are a strange species.

  5. LC Teh permalink
    April 2, 2009 8:35 am

    The curse of the golden age. History just repeats itself. When a society progresses and prospers it indulges in the things that it once lacked and forgot when to stop. The wave is moving (or has moved?) eastwards.

    A deprived society would push itself over the edge if given a chance? Scary thought… but maybe people are just two-legged lemmings after all.

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