Sunday, August 10, 2008

Death or Taxes

So being "in the green" (kind of like being in the know) makes me re-think how I do many things in life. There are so many things in my life that I've changed since I started learning about ways to be environmentally friendly.
For instance, I no longer use paper towels at home. I use rags and dishcloths to wipe up spills or dry my hands. It's actually turned out to be easier than using paper towels. I just throw the dirty ones in with the wash and all is right in the world. I turn off the water when I brush my teeth. While this seems like such a minor change, it saves about 2 gallons of water every time you brush. Try it and you'll be glad you did with all the money you'll save on your water bills. I think the biggest change though has been the I no longer use plastic bags from the grocery store. In fact, I no longer use bags from any store. That's not to say that it doesn't happen occasionally, but I try my hardest to never use a bag if I can carry things myself or to just bring my own. Besides, I absolutely love bags and that gives me chance to make my own or buy cool ones. Below is a bag that I created from an old Wild Oats bag that I got for free. I had a few of them and decided to dress it up a bit.

All this got me to thinking about something that the progressive state of California does. The San Francisco Plastic Bag Ban has started a ripple effect in many cities throughout the United States as well as many other countries in the world. Now, California is even trying to pass the California Bag Tax where every resident will have to pay 25 cents for every plastic bag they use. That's what I consider environmentally friendly! Other countries, like Germany have long been a head of the curve on this one and I think it's only a matter of time before our whole country is doing the same thing.
I find this very inspiring and it even makes me wonder if this is something my city could do. Maybe I'll look into it and see what it would take to get this ball rolling. Until then, consider bringing your own bags to the grocery store. You'll be happy you did because you won't have to worry about all those plastic bags hanging around your place.

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