Considering Green LivingBlogger : Neelam Chibber | Time : 2011-11-15 06:56:13
In the course of history it is obvious that change happens under great pressure. Often it happens very slowly taking generations. The same is true with the modern day consumers approach to daily life. If society needs to see a positive change in its environment, it needs to look at the way it consumes. This starts with small day to day decisions that everyone makes. The effects of global warming are there for all to see, and rather than debate on the actual reality of the fact it may be far simpler for every one on a daily basis to take charge of their immediate environment. Be it using less plastic to reduce our dependency on petroleum products, or segregating our garbage, it will soon be very obvious that the future of the planet as we know it today rests in all our hands and not just in the hands of a few policy makers or business leaders.
Into this scenario, have arrived a series of solutions of low carbon footprint products and for the confused customer faced with a bewildering array of choices, the following simple rules to go shopping with. First, a cloth shopping bag! Simpler said than done. I, often, do not carry a cloth bag with me, but I do avoid taking plastic bags when I shop, or I prefer going to stores that give me paper bags instead of plastic ones!
Anyway, why jump into shopping, lets start with the beginning of our day. We get up, and start with our morning visit to the bathroom, Have we installed our rain water harvesting system at home? Do we keep the tap running when we brush our teeth? Phew, at least the solar water heater is doing its job well and the Great Indian Bucket Bath is the best water saver of all. Anyway lets not feel guilty if we shower, there are some great water saving shower systems available these days.
Lets come to our morning coffee, and to the fundamental topic of food. Is our coffee from Brazil or Coorg? Well if we live in Brazil, it would be great to drink Brazilian java, but in India, drinking coffee from Coorg would reduce the carbon miles drastically and thats what we are aiming for. While on the topic of food, its really tempting to talk about the mass food industry and how you need not necessarily get sucked into this.
Business, investments , profits, technology, and just plain old fashion-mindedness impact the nutrition on your table via the shopping cart. Did you know that the most nutritious part of the corn, that is the seed within, which holds all the protein and vitamin is removed from the corn , before it is pressed into a flake, leaving us with just plain starch to eat in our breakfast cornflakes? While we are a growing economy, fast aping the West blindly, it would be good to know these things, so we could stick to our upma, dosa , roti bhaji and daliya for breakfast. Why do our pineapples from Manipur and Assam need to be transported to great big juice factories? Why can't folks develop technology to build smaller sized post harvest food industries, rather than the massive food parks being proposed? Localised food processing with smaller production units, that employ more labor, with less capital expenditure need to be explored. These would in the long run, use less energy, employ more farmers, and serve local markets. Flavors could be localised. What prevents this is technology. Its far easier to pick up existing technology, designed for conditions that existed 20 years ago, when, energy was boundless, labor cost was high, and all business plans proposed huge investments, huge markets, huge profits, ignoring the hidden cost of the high energy use on the planet as well as the hidden impact of long distance freight, to distribute this mass manufacture.
|No comments yet!|
Login to comment!