Posts Tagged ‘Energy’

“Kilowatt Crackdown” in Seattle: Property Owners Compete!

In Seattle, Property Owners Competing to be Biggest Loser in “Kilowatt Crackdown” |Triple Pundit.

I read this article and it got me thinking… what am I doing to reduce my environmental impact? It’s Monday morning and a perfect time for some reflection!  Using my friend Caroline’s term, what does it take to be an “eco-warrior?” Here are my thoughts:

1. First, you must accept that you are not perfect and can’t change the world in one day, but that small changes over time do add up and make a huge difference

PERSONAL EXAMPLE: I started with recycling and reusing items creatively…now we use cloth napkins and only buy 100% recycled paper goods… that led to unplugging appliances when not in use….which led to only 100% natural cleaners…which led to buying recycled cotton bath towels….and that led to committing to one car… which increased our purchase of fair trade products and organic produce….and now we never cook meat at home…and on the horizon: more sustainable seafood choices

2. Secondly, you must be an advocate.  Naturally you will inspire friends and family around you with your actions, but you can step that up with promoting your values with thoughtful conversation.

PERSONAL EXAMPLE: I posted something on FB about “What’s in your pancake syrup?” This sparked quite the debate among family members who had differing views…but hey maybe it got those who aren’t as savvy about industrial food production to stop and think a minute…

3. Education. This is in my opinion, the way to solve all the world’s problems, but I digress…. Take the time each day to dig in and do some research- this is the only way you will come up with new ideas and be inspired to take further action

PERSONAL EXAMPLE: I am the queen of Twitter (there really is very useful info and orgs out there who don’t tell me what they had for breakfast) and e-newsletters.  The more I read, the more I learn, which leads me to new sources of information. I love it!

4. And finally, take pride in what you are doing.  This goes for all aspects of your life of course, but if someone questions your thoughts or actions, take the time to explain your values to them and be proud of what you are accomplishing each day.  Be the catalyst for change!

PERSONAL EXAMPLE: This is a big one.  What do you say to your mother when she comments: “It makes sense that you moved to the Pacific Northwest- that’s where are all the hippies are.”…. Well you think: OK I will take that as a compliment, because I made the conscious decision to move to a place where I will find more like-minded people.  But remember to pick your battles- the ultra-conservative relative will never understand you, or you them, but you can educate your nieces and nephews little by little by giving fair trade gifts and reusable water bottles and school lunch kits.

Keep on trucking!

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Living space: Is bigger always better?

Downsizing Your Home: How Much Space Do You Really Need? : TreeHugger.

This is an article that really makes you think.  In 2007, my husband and I owned an 1800 square foot house that was we bought new in 2003, but then things changed. We sold nearly all of our possessions to friends, strangers, family and moved to Barcelona, Spain so I could pursue my MBA.

We went from having a lot of space (3 bed and 2 1/2 bath on .33 acres) with a house full of expensive furnishings, to a barely 500 square foot piso in Europe.  In the process of purging my house and eventually selling that too, I realized just how much unnecessary stuff we had.  Did I really need a garlic press? How about all of those DVDs?  Or my favorite, the sled? (We lived in hot NC).  While two of us in a strictly Ikea-furnished mini-piso was difficult at times, it made me realize that I could live with less, and very easily at that.

Check out this article and then take a look around your house or apartment to ponder if living large is always better?

25 Facts About Green IT

In the spirit of Facebook’s “25 Random Things About Me,” here is a post to give you some quick facts about the world of Green IT.  I shared it with my husband who works as a client manager at a British networking solutions company, and said that maybe he should think about these types of things when designing networks for his customers. His response was something along the lines of: “I have, but their budget doesn’t permit the investment…”

Ahh it all comes back to the “crisis,” right? “Sustainable thinking” has become what the marketing budget and break room snacks used to be: first to be cut.  But in (more) difficult economic times, innovation and long-term strategy will be what saves us and allows us to compete in the upswing.

From simple things like double-sided printing (an initiative that our ESADE Net Impact chapter recently implemented successfully in our school building!) to server virtualization, there are things you can do at your company to realize both energy and cost savings. Translation: think about how happy your boss will be when you show him the numbers! You are bound to get that promotion in 2010!

Until next time, keep reading, keep learning, and keep the faith in your sustainability journey!

25 facts you should know about green IT |Sustainable IT | Ted Samson | InfoWorld.