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Ironies of Environmental Science

January 30, 2010

Environmentalism has many misconceptions about what is and is not actually going to make a difference to the health of our Earth. According to Physics for Future Presidents: it now turns out that you don’t want to recycle newspapers or use biodegradable plastics – at least not as far as global warming is concerned. The process of biodegradation is basically one of bacteria consuming carbon compounds and converting them into carbon dioxide.

It turns out many of our recycling programs and ideas about saving the planet are futile. Conservation is key and can not only have remarkable effects of reducing green house emissions but saves the consumer money in the process.

When I have time I’m going to re-visit this subject because for every idea that sounds good, or makes us feel guilty if we are not doing it….may just be a bunch of rotten facts we have been spoon fed, while true and meaningful changes could have been implemented.

I’ve always been intrigued with the idea of “Don’t buy anything for a year” concept. Here is a post I found from Jeni Tree Hugger who describes the technique well.

A few of you have asked me about my “Don’t buy anything new for a year” challenge, so I thought I would elaborate a bit more and let you all in on what it’s all about.

I’m not sure who’s responsible for starting this but many of the ishers are participating and the title basically says it all.
Don’t buy anything new for a year!
I’m not an extravagant person but I do tend to buy a lot of tat.
You know, pretty shiny things covered in glitter and the like, most of it ends up going to charity in a few years time anyway, so this is a really good opportunity for me to break my tat buying habits and save some pennies in the process.

Plus I think we live in such a throw away society with items being replaced at the first sign of a problem with a similar object all shiny and new. Our parents and grandparents were more from the “make do and mend” school of thoughtand this is more where I’d like to be too.

Now, because everyone is different and we all have different needs I have basically decided on my own rules and regulations for this challenge.
Items not included in this challenge are as follows:
Loo roll and cleaning products
Anything that would jeopardize the health and safety of me and my family
Certain people’s birthday and anniversary gifts

I had started this on 1st January but I have failed dismally already so I am re-starting this again.
Why did I fail?
Because the gym I’ve just joined informed me that DM’s are not suitable footwear for their gymnasium!!
The cheek!
I had put up a request on my local Freecycle group requesting for a pair of trainers any style, any colour, didn’t matter if they were for men or women so long as they were size 6.
I got zero replies so was forced to go out and buy a pair of shoes suitable. Trust me, I have come up with a garzillion excuses NOT to join my local gym, I really didn’t need any help in this matter – but I was determined to join and get this aging body of mine back to a reasonable state of fitness. So suitable foot wear was kind of an emergency.
Loathed as I was to buy new anything, I was even more loathed to buy traniers, which I NEVER wear. So I managed to pick up a pair of black baseball boots for under ten euro and left the shoe shop feeling reasonably pleased with myself. At least baseball boots I will wear outside of the gym as well.
Just to elaborate further, buying second hand is OK. Whether it be from ebay, Freecycle or charity shops and boot sales.

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