How Green Are You?

May 13th, 2008

I’ve been tagged by Cristiano with this green meme. The idea? This:

… to write about the ways (I currently picked 5, but you could pick less or more) you think you purposely handle things “the green way”, and then write about the things you know you should handle better.

Okay, how green am I? First off, my good points (I’m cheating a bit and stealing some of Cristiano’s stuff):

1. I don’t have a car.

I still haven’t been bothered to get a drivers license. Why should I? In the Netherlands I had a student travel card (free public transport throughout the week, major discounts in the weekend) and here in London a car is only more trouble.

2. I try to avoid using a hairdryer.

Since my new haircut 3 months ago, I’ve used my hairdryer once. The reason I stopped isn’t actually because it’s greener, but that is a nice side effect. I’ve noticed it’s healthier for my hair if I let it dry naturally; it doesn’t get that static, dried out and greasy. Plus with the way it’s cut now, I can easily put my wet hair up without it looking too “wet-looky”.

3. I buy long-lasting milk.

Again the main reason is not because it’s greener. Normal milk tends to go bad quicker than we can finish a pack, especially the milk sold downstairs here. By the way, long lasting milk tastes just like normal milk nowadays.

4. I use candles and water bottles.

I’m not sure if this is actually “greener”, but during the early stages winter I try not to turn the central heating on that often, instead using candles and water bottles. Mainly the latter is quite useful, because typically I’m cold and shivering, but Cristiano isn’t. Using a water bottle keeps me nice and warm, while not unnecessarily turning up the heater.

5. I don’t overuse plastic grocery bags.

In the Netherlands you have to pay for every plastic grocery bag, so almost everybody brings their own bags or crates with them (I don’t see anybody here in the UK with folding crates in their car; is that something Dutch?). So even here in the UK, I still bring my own bags with me and try to fit as much in them as possible.

My bad points?

1. I leave chargers in the wall.

I’m really bad with this. I almost always leave my phone and laptop charger plugged in, even if those gadgets aren’t connected. I know I shouldn’t, but sometimes I’m plain lazy. Shouldn’t chargers though be more smartly designed to realize when there’s no gadget hanging on them? The technology should be far enough to do something like that, right?

2. I throw batteries away in the normal trash.

Like Cristiano, I have no idea here where I should throw my batteries away. Back in Holland every supermarket has a special separated chemical waste bin; you just bring your batteries in a small plstic bag and throw it there away. Here, though? No idea.

3. I take long showers.

I think this may be my major transgression: my showers are way too long. Even if I try to hurry up, I’m still in there for at least 10 minutes. Shampoo, conditioner, scrub, soap, (etc) it all takes up more time than I want (but I do need it, otherwise my hair becomes a bat nest, Amy Winehouse, anyone?).

4. I don’t use a bike.

While I don’t have a car, I do use public transport a lot. Not that much of a bad thing, but for some distances using a bike would be easier and greener. I’m thinking of bringing my old bike over from the Netherlands. It’s already 8 years old, but still looks better than most bikes here.

5. I don’t reuse the water from my water bottle.

Pretty obvious, but I still don’t do it. Every time I want to fill up my water bottle, I fill the kettle with water from the tap and turn it on. Then when that’s hot, I realize I have to empty the water bottle and “throw away” the water. I’m at least thinking about it, but I know I should change this.

So those are my good and bad green issues. I’m tagging Too Sexy For My Books, Geek Chic, Geek Girl Friday, Geeks Are Sexy and A Consuming Experience.