Blog Action Day

I had pledged to post on Blog Action Day and was caught up with stuff at work, so here’s my post that was due two days ago. As long as we get the message across, I feel the the purpose is served. We should all be doing our bit for the environment and that doesn’t mean hugging trees, or protesting against construction of dams. In no means do wish to demean the activists, but I only wish to let them do their bit, while we do ours. With an Indian(Rajendra Kumar Pachauri) as the chief of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change(IPCC) which won the Nobel Peace Prize for 2007, this surge towards a better tomorrow will get a much needed push as far as desis are concerned. Let me attempt to list a few ways in which we can help the environment.

  1. Use less plastic:
    • Try to use paper/cloth bags for supermarket and grocery needs as opposed to polythene/plastic. The reason being that plastic takes more time to degrade.
    • Use bio-degradable plastic if possible and try to re-use plastic bags when ever possible
  2. Save trees use less paper: There are many ways how you can reduce paper usage and save trees.
    • Pay bills online and stop receiving paper bills in the mail. This is a boon to all those lazy and forgetful people like me who can stay away from long queues at the counter. You can also minimize the frequency of late fees slapped upon you owing to lack of stamps at the last moment, postal delay, or the case wherein you threw/tore the bill along with other scrap.
    • Use plastic money where ever possible. This may seem contradiction to the above stated suggestions but plastic money does reduce the number of currency notes you carry. A lot of people carry wads of currency in their wallets and these unused currency bills are soiled after a certain point. You simply go and get them exchanged at the bank, which could be avoided by use of plastic money. I am not advocating the use of credit cards and this post isn’t sponsored by Citibank, but try using your debit card when possible and avoid carrying too much currency. This way you keep track of how much and where you have been spending your money, and also helps in case of stolen wallets
    • Use to-do software and minimize the use of post-it notes and scribbling pads. Best thing would be to use Google Calendar and sync it to your Google Desktop.
    • Take prints only when you need to file documents or archive them. People just prefer to read from a printout and trash/shred it the next moment. Use a soft copy and increase the font size if you cant have a problem.
    • Use the print preview feature before you hit the button. It isn’t there just because someone thought it was cool. This reduces the number of times you print the same document. Also please print only the number of copies you require and a round figure is not always the best option!
  3. Save running water:
    • Please turn of the tap while you shave, brush or wash your face. Also while bathing, it won’t kill you to turn of the shower while shampooing.
    • While doing the dishes, just to exhibit your dislike for the chores don’t use water enough for an elephant to bathe.
    • It has been proved that dishwashers use less soap and water when compared to hand-washing
    • Please don’t give me the age old line “save water, drink beer”
  4. Save electricity:
    • Turn on the lights only when it really gets dim, the windows and curtains are not meant to show your support for Bill Gates.
    • Switch off the fans A/C while not in use. A lot of people keep them running at the least speed, for reasons known only to them.
    • While leaving the house you turn of the lights but why not your A/C?. Don’t kill the environment just because you want to be welcomed by a whiff of cool air when you open the door. Same holds for the heating system as well
  5. Save fossil fuels:
    • Try walking if destinations are within 1 mile/km and conditions are favorable
    • Get into the habit of biking, it’s a good exercise and saves fuel and money
    • Carpooling to work/college is also a good idea unless you want to score on the opposite sex.

Any additions?