This post is part of Blog Action Day. I do not have any advertising on this site, so I cannot donate the revenue. Instead, I am donating .25 for every subscriber I have today and splitting the donation between my favorite online environmental charity and my favorite local environmental charity.
1. Ditch the car. I know a guy who drives a couple blocks from his condo to the bars. It’s one of those things that gets under my skin and makes me go crazy. The single best thing you can do to help the environment is to not own a car. Instead of driving, you can walk (gasp!), ride the bus, or carpool and carshare.
At my last job, I rode the bus to work every day. Now, my workplace is only a three minute walk away (the coffee shop and my cubicle both), and I actually miss the bus. There’s something relaxing in having someone else serve you, drive you, and being able to people watch, look out the window, read, listen to music. It’s a good way to start the day.
2. Live in a trendy location. If you live downtown, you’re probably doing this already. Living downtown in a city usually means that you are living in a small footprint . My apartment is 450 square feet and my new condo is 650 square feet. A trendy location is also close to farmers markets, the grocery store, bars, restaurants, coffee shops, parks, bookstores, libraries, fitness clubs, and shopping! I.e., the places that have a good walkabilty score. My walk score is 97 out of 100. That’s good for your health and good for the environment.
It’s easy not to own a car when you live in such a great location. It also means that you’ll always be only steps away from the best things happening on any given day. You will pay more in rent for living in such a location, but with no car costs (up keep, gas, insurance, parking costs, etc.), choosing the right neighborhood will ultimately be cheaper.
3. Eat yummy food. No chain restaurants. Keep it local. Avoid food that you don’t know where it came from. And for goodness sakes, please stop going to Starbucks. Here in Madison, there is a Starbucks on both ends of State St. It’s ridiculous. You probably live where you do for a reason. Why go somewhere that is the same everywhere across the world? Celebrate the uniqueness of where you live and who you are. Of course, even local restaurants don’t always have local food, but just try your best. When you eat food that is local, it tastes better and is better for you. And you shouldn’t settle for anything less to take care of your body.
Being good to the environment is not about living with less. It’s about living with more. Living better. It’s about quality over quantity. And it’s definitely the Modite way to go.