Thursday, February 5, 2009

What are you doing to solve Global Warming?

After viewing an "Inconvenient Truth" you should understand that we do have solutions to the problem of global warming. This article (Trashing the Fridge)might sound a little radical but what are you doing to reduce your carbon footprint? Can you do more?? If so, what will you do???


Marika-Jennifer said...

I know that I pushed to replace the light bulbs in my house. Now we use the good kind that actually save a bit of energy.
During the summer and when it's warm enough I dry my clothes on the line. I also try to stuff as much as I can into the washing machine and put it on the water and energy saving setting.
I also refuse to wash my Dad's car. I know that sounds like it's just trying to get out of something, but really if I wash it (with soap) the soap will just go down the storm drain and into the bay. If I really must, i sprinkle the hose over it once or twice, but that's it.
I try to walk to school, and I always walk home from school. If I need or want to go somewhere I chose a place where I can get there either by walking or taking public transportation.
When i know that the smoke alarm in my room is turned off (it is supr-sensitive and will go off if someone lights a match) I try to light and warm my room by candle light. It's fun and warm, and brighter than most people would expect.
I try to buy stuff that comes in very little to no packaging as to reduce the amount of waste going into the dumps at the end of the week.
There are a lot of other little things that I try to do as well, but these were the first bunch that came to me.

Period2DevSahni said...

In order to help slow down the process of global warming, I have urged my parents to use the light bulbs that use less energy. I do walk more in my community, and refrain from using the car a lot.I would like to talk more about the radical approach of throwing away your refrigerator. To this extent, this radical decision, is not a wise one. Necessities such as your fridge are essential to human life. Like the article mentioned environmentalists view this decision as radical. Switching to a mini fridge would work, however there are other things one can do. Don't leave lights on when you leave the house, try to carpool and just be aware. In the end, there are many things one can do to reduce his or her carbon footprint, however it has to be a global movement rather than a couple of individuals. While in the U.S. there are opportunities for energy efficient cars, in India and China these cars are very expensive or cease to exist. When I travel to Bombay, India I can hardly breath without inhaling an overwhelming amount of smog and contamination in the air. It is hard to see 10 feet ahead of you. Consequently, I have made some non-radical attempts to cut down my family's carbon footprint, however as I mentioned this will have to be a world wide effort.

Period7Anna-Isabella said...

I try to walk, ride my bike, or take the bus whenever I can. Sometimes I'm too tired (meaning lazy) to bike to school, and sometimes my mom insists on driving me when she doesn't think walking is safe, but I should definitely try to bike and take buses more. My parents are both very environmentally conscious, so I don't have to push for energy-efficient lightbulbs or better recycling practices or anything like that. I turn off a lot of lights, though -- my family leaves them on all the time. I unplug things when I'm not using them sporadically, but I don't know how much that does. I read somewhere that leaving cell phone chargers plugged in when they aren't charging cell phones wastes a lot of energy, so I always unplug mine when I'm not using it, but I should talk to my family about that too. I should definitely be more aware of the packaging I buy -- I notice when packaging is excessive, but I don't usually consciously choose a product because it has the least packaging. I don't normally go grocery shopping (or any type of shopping) though. But I am vegetarian!

Eva 6 said...

I frequently check my tire pressure because if your tire pressure is low then you are wasting more gas then you need to be. My family also composts a lot rather than throwing stuff away, brings reusable bags to the grocery store and our own containers to restaurants for takeout food. We also try to use our heater as little as possible to conserve energy.

babeygee said...

(This is Lisa G by the way, my google blogger ID wasn't working)

As soon as it is legal I will drive a carpool to school that way parents won't have to drive their kids and drive back (saving them from making a round trip) and since I will be going to school anyway it makes more sense. I also live really far from school, about 40 minutes on a usual morning, so if i got to hang out with people after school i try to leave my car at school and take bart to wherever it is we plan to go.

Most of the energy-saving things I do involve transportation, so I would like to try doing some other non-driving related things as well. I'm really good at turning lights off and not letting water run, and my mom and I use the "grey water" from dish washing to water the plants. We have also allowed for our backyard to basically die (but not the front because people see it ;))

I hope to have enough discipline to take 3 minute showers in the morning because I'm sure that would save my family a lot of time :)

period7adarsha is unoriginal said...

My dad and I have always pushed to install energy-efficient fluorescent lightbulbs in our house. Couple that with always turning off all the small routers and lights at night, and our ability to save power has gone up dramatically. My dad also installed water-efficient shower heads that not only save water but also are way cooler/feel better than regular ones. It's a win-win situation. The toilet we have is also one of the low-flush models, but it is old enough that it is relatively inefficient compared to today's toilets.
There are also things I do outside of the house to help solve global warming. I take BART to school to help save energy, though the system itself is probably not too efficient. In addition, I plan to get a fuel-efficient hybrid when I start to drive as to reduce my carbon footprint.
The biggest thing I can do and am doing to help combat global warming is my biofuels project in India. There, Callie Roberts,my sister, and I are buying large quantities of a biofuel plant called Jatropha curcas (which very recently appeared on the news as a very promising biofuel) and distributing to farmers' groups so they can sell the seeds for a good profit. This lifts them out of poverty, and the oil that is extracted from the seeds is a very good biofuel as well. As Dev mentioned, India's air pollution is a major problem, and if we can help alleviate it, we can help mitigate global warming's effects.

rosie said...

Like Anna's family, the people in my household tend to leave a lot of unnecessary lights on. Even though they are the energy efficient kind, I'm in the habit of turning them off whenever I see them. We should dry more clothing on the line we have, since we tend to generate a lot of dirty laundry. Two things that I want to work on this year are eating less meat and walking/taking public transportation to more places. My carpool is pretty inefficient... I didn't know that leaving cell phone chargers plugged in expended energy, so I'll definitely mention that to my family.

Jonna (aka Gaia) said...

This is from Chelsea Mitchell, P. 7

We have also changed our light bulbs to CFL. I know that PG and E had a campaign a couple years ago where they got some local groups to help them distribute 100,000 CFL lightbulbs throughout the bay area for free. It was sort of a community outreach and way to increase use of CFL's. I helped out with that and took on 50 lightbulbs to distribute.

I usually unplug things when I leave the room because i know that it still requires energy to keep them plugged in. I really wish that there was some way you could do this with alarm clocks without having to reset them everytime you plug them back in.

One thing that I could do better is try to walk or take the bus more often. I take BART everytime I go into the city, and when I'm going to shoot hoops in the park i walk down from my house. But, I could also start walking to people's houses instead of driving. This would involve getting ready a little earlier so that I have time to walk and arrive on time.

My family reduces our waste by recycling or composting the vast majority of our waste. I help that process by being volunteered to take our green waste and dump it into the green waste bin outside.

Period 2 Jenn said...

Well I take BART almost everyday to school, and most days after practice, and try to cut down on my driving. I unplug my computer when I'm not using it, and I use a Nalgene bottle daily instead of drinking from multiple plastic bottles. We've recently pushed to get more use out of our garden, and are using Meyer lemons frequently that are growing out in our backyard.

Period2Fred said...

My family checks tire pressure and gets the cars tuned up frequently.W also recycle cans, plastic bottles, and news papers. My family takes BART to work and school. We try to use our heater and air conditioner as little as possible. We water most of the plants with a drip system in the soil instead of just spraying water everywhere. We probably do some other stuff that I'm not aware of, but this is the stuff I know about. Oh, I do my homework outside in the grass when it's nice outside. Saves energy and relaxes me!

per2wumi said...

Even though my family has an extra fridge(or two), we have installed halogen lightbulbs in the entire house. When its cold,we try to not use the fireplace or the heater. I try to bart half the time and drive (or get driven) the other half of the time. I've started to buy clothes that are made of organic cotton and buy organic foods too!

period3_alice said...

Well, I walk to school every day (except Wednesdays when I need the car to go to my voice lesson in downtown Oakland). On the days that I drive to school, my mom takes bart to work, so as a family at least at least one of us take alternate transportation everyday. I try to tkae BART on weekends as well. If I take BART I never drive to the station, I just walk down to it. Also, my family never drives to the grocery store. We walk a few blocks to the Safeway on College Ave. It's quite handy, actually. For example, if we ever need some milk or if I have a random craving for, say, cholcolate soymilk (it happens) I don't burn any fossil fuels to get to the store.
Because of where I live, it is very easy to get lots of places without ever stepping foot in a car.
I try to cut down on my enviromental impact by buying used clothes. More than half my woredrobe is either used or sustainable materials. There are many amazing vintage stores that sell unique and wonderful clothes all over the Bay Area. you just have to find them. I am a frequent buyer at Pretty Penny on College Ave. (It's an amazing store) I always feel good after buying vintage because I know that no one will have the cloths as me and I saved a perfectly good article of clothing from an ocean of trash.
My family also uses the lovely green buckets for food scraps in the kitchen. We have significantly decreased our kitchen trash since we got the green bucket. A tip for keeping it from smelling, line the bucket with newspaper. This keeps down the smell without using plastic bags. Also, we heavily recycle paper. No piece of paper printed on one side ends up in our recycling bin. We use scrap paper religiously.
I feel lucky to live in a place where it is so easy to recycle and use public transportation. Yay Bay Area!

Period 1 Gabe said...

Currently I'm not doing a whole lot to conserve my carbon footprint; what i do do is walk around most of the time, turn of lights when I'm not in the room and take short-ish showers in the mornings. I do most of these things because they're enforced by my parents, but they do help. If i wanted to decrease my footprint even more i could change lightbulbs to more energy efficient versions, take more public transportation, and turn our house heater off more of the time. Nothing else really comes to mind in terms of conservation at the moment, but I'm willing to decrease my footprint a great amount.

Period 1 Sterling said...

I can't imagine living without a refrigerator, mostly because my 4-person family uses it very much. However, it is a very old refrigerator and I think that my family should get a new one that is more energy efficient.
Even though I don't think that my family will be able to stop using a refrigerator, we do take action to prevent global warming in several ways. My dad walks to work every day and night, rain or shine. My grandfather is the inventor of the plug-in hybrid, which runs purely on electricity for the average person's commute, but switches to a regular hybrid after 30 or 60 miles, for long distance driving. Although he does not own a plug-in hybrid, because they are currently not being sold, he does have a regular hybrid, which cuts down on emissions.
Other everyday things that I do include biking to my swim practice on weekends, taking short showers, and replacing light bulbs with CFLs.

bkstrokemonkey said...

I take the bus and/or BART about three to five times(sometimes even six) a week. I also use CFLs and make sure I turn off any lights in a room if I'm not in the room or if it's not really necessary to have the light on.

My dad also takes BART into the city for work and drives the ballet carpool.(I do not do ballet, my sibling does.) My mom also drives my brother's carpool to school and the other mom drives mty brother and her kids home after school.

Callie said...

First of all, I am quite an environment enthusiast. I have convinced my family to purchase the 2010 Toyota Prius, which gets about 50-60 miles per gallon. Also, I am part of Surfrider Foundation. Every month I go to Ocean Beach in San Francisco to clean the beach. Furthermore, I help paint storm drains with the blue fish and words that say "Do not dump. Drain leads to ocean." Also, at Christmas time, I had my family purchase all new CFL lights for the tree and our house. Moreover, I have my own battery recycling program in my neighborhood and at my dad's work. In addition, some small actions include taking shorter showers, turning off the lights, not using the lights (example: when I get home from school and it is light outside, I open my blinds and leave the light off), and try to avoid driving excessively.

In conclusion, I think giving up your fridge is a great idea, if you can do it. If you can't, there are still thousands of ways to curb global warming.

Period1Gelsey said...

Although it seems like a good idea to turn off your refrigerator, it wouldn't be a good idea for either one of us. We would still have to drive at least five minutes to get to the store. It is also impossible for us to set chilled foods outside during the winter b/c it doesn't get cold enough here. However, Danielle thinks it's a good idea to share refrigerators w/ your neighbors (Gelsey doesn't-too annoying). It is good to get an energy efficient fridge, though, even if it makes the "super annoying beepy noise" when you leave the door open too long. People have done studies that show there are many food items that don't need to be refrigerated for as long as we think they do. By leaving these products in a cabinet, some people could be able to limit the size of their fridge, but that probably wouldn't make much of a difference anyway. If some people want to unplug their fridge, that's wonderful if it works for them. We personally don't think it's that effective.

Danielle and Gelsey again

period1marina said...

1. replacing lightbulbs
2. we use graywater from sinks, showers
3. i take stop and start showers and use a bucket to save the water in the beginning when it is warming up
4. i eat very little meat
5. i line-dry clothes when it's warm
6. we switched to an energy/water conservant washing machine that uses about 3/4 less water i believe
7. my dad has a hybrid :)
8. we turn off the heat and put on the sweaters
9. my dad and i crusade against having unnessecary lights on...we don't turn the lights on in rooms we're not in
10. we're installing solar panels and will be on the grid pattern thing, hopefully soon as soon as they can get it installed
11. i ALWAYS recycle and my parents do too. not my sister so much. that pisses me off. i take home plastic bags, containers, etc to recycle (safeway recycles plastic bags) and try to not buy food with excessive packaging (whole foods has nice compostable food containers though)
12. we have a compost in our back yard
13. i wished we drove less. that is one thing i really wish i did less off and i feel like that's one of the most impt. things.

also: i think that getting rid of your refridgerator is not going to make that much of a difference. i like the effort and it's nice that people want to do that, but i think there are other more important things that people could be doing. i commend anyone who wants to do it, but i don't think it's something everyone needs to do. REALLY driving less and changing our general habits would be better than getting rid of refridgerators (esp. as many getting rid of refridgerators leads to more things...what else do we give up? CO2 has been on the rise ever since humans were EXISTANT but it's had the biggest boom in the industrial period. i think we're too far along to have people revert back to 1700s and 1800s behaviour-carragies+horses, salting everything, etc. we can't go BACK we just have to learn to change our habits.

period 1 Erik said...

Well, this seems to be the cool article, so I might as well join in.
Is it just me or is anyone else wondering exactly how that lady has a glass of milk and a bowl of what is presumably cereal with milk? She herself said they have no method for storing dairy products at this time.... hmmmmm.... a quandary for the ages.
On tossing one's fridge to save the environment, I think there're limitations to how far you can go before things become just plain silly. I mean, if you live in Canada, sure, maybe you can live with an ice chest, seeing as it won't go below fridge temperatures outside anyway (um... joking... this article is about global warming, riiight?). I suppose stealing ice from work each day works too... (that part I found a bit strange).
What I mean is, a fridge certainly is a major pollutant, because it uses chemicals toxic to the very food we store in it and vast amounts of energy. From these numbers, it makes logical sense to rid oneself of that toxic behemoth that stores our meat [from the hunt!]. However, we must also acknowledge the technological breakthrough that is the refrigerator. It is a marvel that "99.5 percent of American homes" can have a device that cools food to preserving levels. Sure, we could throw it away, and go back a hundred years, where the milkman would also drop off a big block of ice. Or even further and cover everything in salt or pickle or jam it. I don't want pickle juice in my cereal, nuh uh. Well I'll stop huffing about the importance of the fridge and just say that my conservation efforts include a fridge. (my fridge is quirky in that it has a tendency to randomly freeze things... like our precious milk)
As for my little environmentalist efforts, I have done a few things. First off, thanks to the easiness and availability of BART, a large portion of my carpool (yes, carpool) includes a BART leg. Secondly, I too have replaced most of my light bulbs with the swirly ones. Not only do they look cooler, but they are generally whiter and fairly brighter than incandescents (they do make natural light ones, the yellow type, but they're more expensive). My grandpa always brings them to our house when he comes and goes on raids (i think he got them all this time). Also with my grandpa's guidance, I replaced our heater filters, and seeing as they weren't doing anything, we placed them in places where they would be more effective in preventing indoor (oooOOOoooo) pollutants. Oh yes, and I mustn't forget California's wonderful recyclables program. I'm sure I do a lot more without even thinking about it. That's the thing about the future generation, our generation, in that all this conservation sort of stuff has just become a part of our lives, within our subconscious. I think that we are taking steps towards a cleaner future as individuals like this (maybe not by throwing out our fridges, but...), and the world will eventually be a better place [thanks to viewers like you].

Period 7 Justin said...

One of the most dramatic ways that we can cut our carbon footprint is buy eating locally grown food. While I nor my family do this enough, locally grown food is a win-win situation for everyone involved. Instead of purchasing fruits or vegetables grown across the country, or worse, halfway across the world, purchasing produce at local farmers markets cuts transportation costs (and pollutants) drastically. The carbon saved by purchasing an orange that was grown thirty miles away as opposed to one that was flown in from Chile and driven across the country is enormous. Purchasing locally grown food also has incentives for consumers as well, as locally grown food tends to be fresher, and stimulates the local agricultural economy.