Thursday, October 15, 2009

Trying to make a smaller footprint

Today is Blog Action Day. As of this writing, 7,685 blogs in 140 countries with 11,521,509 readers had registered their intentions to post about the same issue on the same day on their blogs with the aim of sparking discussion around an issue of global importance. The topic this year is Climate Change.

After I registered to participate, I realized I didn't know a heckuva lot about climate change beyond what one might learn from reading the newspaper or watching the evening news. And what could one person living in the middle of nowhere, New Mexico, possibly do to help turn the tide of climate change anyway? Turns out, quite a bit.

I went online and found a carbon footprint calculator to see how much carbon dioxide I was contributing to the problem. I found this calculator from the EPA to be the most meaningful and helpful for me. Turns out that telecommuting and heating the house with wood earn me lots of points in the good column...which are all but negated by the gas-guzzling truck in the garage.

But there are little things I can do right now to reduce my carbon footprint, and save money besides – like turning the hot water heater down a notch, and unplugging the chargers for my assorted electronic gizmos. I've replaced about half of the regular incandescent lightbulbs in the house with compact fluorescents, but now I need to finish the job. If every American home replaced just one regular lightbulb with a compact fluorescent, $700 million in annual energy costs would be saved while preventing 9 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions, equivalent to the emissions from 800,000 cars.

We're all responsible for creating the greenhouse gases that are causing our climate to change, and I think we all have to take responsibility for fixing the problem. I'm going to do what I can to make my carbon footprint smaller. It's the least I can do in exchange for the natural wonders that surround me.


  1. Your picture is breath-taking! I also live in a beautiful area and thank my lucky stars each day, so always keep in mind the things I can do to keep it that way.

  2. Lovely post, as always, and some good concrete suggestions for steps we can take to help the earth.

    I'm spending some time this morning going through some of the participating blogs on the Blog Action Day website, reading their posts, and leaving comments. My, there are a lot of them! But I figure that we action bloggers can use all the encouragement we can get.

  3. Great post! This is something each and every one of us needs to think about - most of us can make some changes to our daily habits no matter how globally conscious we consider ourselves. Thanks for using your voice to promote this cause!

  4. Brava! And how did you find out about Blog Action Day? Must sign up for next year.

  5. Good job...and don't forget, unless you just pitch the manure you can compost it and save lots of carbon points on NOT spreading chemicals on things. But you must spread by hand, can't be using the PU to do it!

  6. Just found your blog, very interesting. Liked your post about Lyle's Curtain Call. I had a similiar clinic experience this summer. I love your part of the country, the pictures are great.