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What are you doing to reduce your footprint?

I have two friends that regularly ask people idling their cars if they would mind turning them off. I have a friend who washes her milk bags and uses them instead of buying ziplock bags. I have another friend who buys most of her clothes from used clothing stores (and not because she can't afford new stuff either). I have recently been trying to buy all my produce at local farmers markets, and trying to eat more of whatever is in season.

Share with us your efforts at reducing your ecological footprint.

Sat. Oct 6, 5:54pm

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Battery powered lawnmower

"One old gas powered lawn mower running for an hour emits as much pollution as driving 650 miles in a 1992 model automobile." - Stockholm, Sweden study.

We tried the rotating blade push lawnmower, but our lawn always looked raggedy. Couldn't seem to keep the blades sharp enough maybe? Our yard is too large for a plug in electric lawnmower (plus running over the cord always seems dangerous). So we found a rechargeable lawnmower (Black and Decker) that we love! Aside from the reduced pollution, it's so quiet we can cut the lawn knowing we aren't disturbing our neighbors.

Saturday, October 06, 2007, 6:21 PM

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I do my part by voting Republican to make sure the free market can work to bring continual innovations to the marketplace. There are many individuals working to reduce carbon emissions- one big thing we can all do is replace our lightbulbs with energy reducing footprints. The impact can be huge. There is a link below.


Saturday, October 06, 2007, 6:26 PM

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I am converting to compact fluorescents as my incandescents burn out, but I haven't found a solution yet for those bathroom light fixtures with the decorative globe bulbs (I know, tacky, but I have other priorities), or for the modern chandelier type that take the small bulbs. Anyone have a solution?

Saturday, October 06, 2007, 7:39 PM

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I agree with your first sentence and a half... But taking care of the lightbulbs after they are broken- or dead is yet to be delt with...
I try and recycle.. use paper over again by using it for writing down notes- keep the heat low in the winter... and I used EC or elimination communication with my son...all while using cloth underpants/dipes

Saturday, October 06, 2007, 10:20 PM

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I could not figure out what "elimination communication" meant, but the lightbulb finally went on when I realized I had to read it in context with cloth diapers/underpants. Neat.

10:20 are you saying that spent and broken fluorescents are more of a disposal problem than incandescents?

Yes, heat is a big one where I live. This winter I vow to make sure we use the setback so that it is cooler while we sleep.

Sunday, October 07, 2007, 7:51 AM

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I still don't get "elimination communication".

Sunday, October 07, 2007, 12:44 PM

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here is one of the many links on elimination communication...


Sunday, October 07, 2007, 1:10 PM

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What do I do with a CFL when it burns out? What is the proper disposal of a CFL bulb?
Follow these guidelines to dispose your CFL properly:

Like paint, batteries, thermostats, and other hazardous household items, CFLs should be disposed of properly. Do not throw CFLs away in your household garbage if better disposal options exist. To find out what to do first check (where you can find disposal options by using your zip code) or call 1-877-EARTH911 for local disposal options. Another option is to check directly with your local waste management agency for recycling options and disposal guidelines in your community. Additional information is available at Finally, IKEA stores take back used CFLs, and other retailers are currently exploring take back programs.
If your local waste management agency offers no other disposal options except your household garbage, place the CFL in a plastic bag and seal it before putting it in the trash. If your waste agency incinerates its garbage, you should search a wider geographic area for proper disposal options. Never send a CFL or other mercury containing product to an incinerator.
ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs have a two-year warranty. If the bulb fails within the warranty period, return it to your retailer.
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What should I do if a CFL breaks?
Because there is such a small amount of mercury in CFLs, your greatest risk if a bulb breaks is getting cut from glass shards. Research indicates that there is no immediate health risk to you or your family should a bulb break and it's cleaned up properly. You can minimize any risks by following these proper clean-up and disposal guidelines:

Sweep up—don't vacuum—all of the glass fragments and fine particles.
Place broken pieces in a sealed plastic bag and wipe the area with a damp paper towel to pick up any stray shards of glass or fine particles. Put the used towel in the plastic bag as well.
If weather permits, open windows to allow the room to ventilate.

all advice above is from:
SO if you live in an area like I do that does not have regular pick up of hazardous materials and incinerates trash... it is a problem.

The other link is the story on the mother who broke a bulb and called some people for help- and it has turned into a nightmare "circus."


Sunday, October 07, 2007, 1:17 PM

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1:17 thank you so much for all that information! I'm so glad I took a peek in here. I've only bought a couple CFL's so far, but I didn't realize there were special disposal issues.

It's Canadian thanksgiving here tomorrow. I'm proud to say I went to a local farmer and bought every vegetable I'm serving directly from him. I had to pick out a green worm from the broccoli (shiver shiver), and some of the green beans were past their prime, but all in all it's a bounteous feast that travelled less than a mile!

Sunday, October 07, 2007, 1:50 PM

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