Green Leader: Jennifer Peterson
School: Angelo State University
Project Objective: Continuing my green life while educating my two children on how to be more ecologically responsible.
Project Activities or Steps: 1) Continue using cloth bags for groceries. No paper, no plastic. This includes using the six canvas bags I have for groceries and the two lightweight zip bags I keep in my purse for unexpected purchases.
2) Recycle more than I throw away. Chose purchases carefully. If packaging can't be recycled, I consider other brands.
3) Look at ingredient labels on all cleaning products I buy. I currently make most of my cleaners, but laundry det, dishwashing liquid, etc have to be green.
4) Start making vegetarian meals more of a priority.
5) Don't throw away old clothes. Donate what can be re-used.
6) Drive less. Consolidate errands, use more local businesses.
7) Buy only energy star rated appliances. Make my home as energy efficient as possible, by regular preventative maintanance on AC units, fridge, W/D, etc. Also, make sure your home is properly insulated, get solar screens, weatherstripping, etc.
Project Resources: Most I currently own. All resources can be obtained very easily at the local Home Depot, Whole Foods, etc.
Project Budget: Depends on project. You might spend more on some things, but you really do save money being green, it's amazing....
Time Required: This is a life learning process. Some things you can start right away, others You may need time to save for solar screens, it may take a few months to accumilate enough grocery bags for all your groceries. For us alums who have children, grocery trips can be big. I started just buying one bag a month. I bought mine 10 years ago, then they were about 15 a piece, but they're still going strong. Today, they are more widely available and cheaper too.
How This Affects Your Community: Immensly. I buy locally grown, organic produce. this helps the farmers, and I get better quality. I use only green cleaning products that do not contain phosphates or petroleum. I also do not expose my children, or the neighborhood children to chemicals.
I also only use organic gardening methods which keeps chemicals out of our lakes and streams.
Getting Others Involved: My friends and neighbors are always asking what they can do to make a change. I love talking with people about this stuff. I learn from them, and hopefully I can pass on something useful to them at the same time.
When other people at the store see me using re-useable bags, I'm setting an example. That's the most important thing we can do-in my opinion. You would be surprised how many people approach you and ask questions when they see your bags and what your buying....