Comment 74955

By Undustrial (registered) - website | Posted March 02, 2012 at 10:56:50

In my experience, to go "going green" successfully, one needs a few factors. Otherwise it's just not personally sustainable.

a) Cheap: Going green was never supposed to be expensive. Over a generation, the sustainable adobe abodes of back-to-the-landers have been converted into million-dollar monster homes, and "eco-living" has become a rather expensive fashion trend. Many green choices are more expensive at first, but any one worth its salt will save you money in the long run. Borelli's right - retiring early really is probably the best choice listed here. Cutting energy bills, ditching a car or growing your own food can save hundreds or more a month, and that's a lot of reasons to stay green.

b) Easy: if it takes a lot of work, chances are you'll slack off eventually. I've tried hand-washing all my laundry, flushing the toilet with a grey-water bucket from the shower and countless other experiments, but I have a job and a family and they're hard enough to keep up with. The many green actions I've stuck with are often those which are easiest, and which save lots of effort overall.

c) Fun: this stuff has to be enjoyable. Far too many talk of being "green" like some sort of depressing religious penance. It doesn't have to be. Riding a bike is fun, gardening is fun, and when they're not easy, they're rewarding in all kinds of other ways. Be creative and try some new things.

d) Social: "lifestyle" choices can have an enormous impact, but only when they go beyond individuals. When they start becoming a part of local cultural rituals, this brings "change" on a far more basic level than any new law. It starts with friends and neighbours, by simple acts of sharing and favours, or simply setting a good example.

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