Eco Nazi Warriors, Green Consumerism. I sit depressed sometimes at the crazy chaotic confusion of what “ Being Green” means. I hear arguments of what “ Green” should look like, what standards businesses should be “held accountable” to, and I often wonder if in this “ ego” trap that some “ Green “ experts want to insist that we adhere to, we haven’t lost the reason for the actions, the openness to hear and be heard on what solutions can come from it, being an Eco Nazi Warrior setting too high standards and causing issues within the system. Small business being shut down due to the hard-core green standards to which they cannot compete.
On the other hand, I also see our country, our world moving too slowly to make changes, and causing so much desperation among experts, and concerned citizens and the need to push harder, and protest more.
Don’t get me wrong I’m all about non-toxic, clean and a healthier world. I’m about protection of the habitat and it’s inhabitants as well as sustainability. I’m just not hard-core ‘do it this way or else’. Why, because first off I created my campaign to help people understand that every bit they do helps, I also created my campaign It’s Hip To Be Green® to create a more positive, upbeat trend of Being Green, instead of the fear people into becoming more “ Green”.
You see I don’t need to set people straight, make them feel hopeless and unaware, I don’t need to only hold Green businesses accountable for high standards. I believe that it is far more productive to get people excited about being green, show businesses you appreciate what they are doing, and support them moving further into cutting their carbon footprint. As a consumer we hold all the power. The corporations must follow. If we buy we support them.
This may sound as if I’m approving of “ Green Washing”, it isn’t. There is a vast difference in a business doing what it can to be green, than one using “having a “ Green “ model” and on the flip side continuing to support unethical use of “Green” to continue toxic and damaging practices.
I try to stay focused on, Being Green myself at home, in my life, and living by example, then I am pushing it on others. I’m Green and I can prove it. It’s simple. I don’t have an elaborate “ Green built “ house, I have a used house, a refurbished house that also used many “ used” supplies and lumber in the remodeling of it. I’m proud of that. I don’t need to keep up with the “ Green Jones’”. What I do is walk my talk. I don’t do it to ” fit it”. I do it because I really do care about this planet, our health and the environment!
In all honesty, building bigger, more elaborate “ Green” homes is still consumerism. It’s just “ Green Consumerism”. I’m not against it, I promote it, sell it, use it. However, I do feel that there is a division between the big “ Green Consumer Warriors” pushing buying more, Green products, and people buying less, re-using more, using Green products when they need it, and actually cutting their consumerism and carbon foot print down in all areas of their life.
You see buying carbon offsets credits is great, if one cannot balance the scales any other way, but just not having to is much better for the environment. I’m game on having more Green products, more Green options, Greener businesses, totally on board with it. I am one. It’s Hip To Be Green®
What I have issue is, creating a world that has just as much consumerism as it does now, if not more, and it being Greener Consumerism. Creation of products Green or not takes energy and a certain level of carbon footprint. Even if they are Green!
I rarely have to worry about offsetting my carbon footprint and here is why. I’m doing so much and working on doing more every year, to be the Greenest I can be. I don’t need to compete. I don’t need to compare, I just focus on how I can do more. This keeps me more humble, less pushy, and feeling better about what I project into the world. I live it! I don’t preach it. It’s Hip To Be Green, and I love it.
I buy used clothing most of the time, what I don’t buy used, I buy deeply discounted. I sell it or donate it to Goodwill when done. I don’t toss it in the landfill.
I use my towels to the end, trickle them down to dog towels, then rags and use them til they are barely anything left.
I drink out of peanut butter jars. I don’t need to impress, it is more important than “ social status”. I could have a fine formal dinner, and we’d drink out of peanut butter jars. I use peanut butter, it takes energy to recycle them. So, I drink out of them. It saves money, energy, the environment.
I grow my own Organic Veggies and I’m working on fruit trees and eventually fresh eggs.
I re-use almost everything I can. What I cannot re-use I donate.
I use my Organic coffee grinds in my garden, I compost.
I even use broken clay plant pots in my garden for decorations or to hold other plants.
I heat my home with corn burning furnace. That’s right, corn. I buy it from local farmers. I support our local economy, and I heat my home wonderfully with corn. I’m the only person I know that has one. Bio fuel isn’t that green, I use corn. Farmer’s I’d rather support than the Oil industry, or Electric and utility industry.
I use the charcoal from my furnace for gardens or other uses. Nothing goes to waste.
I buy used furniture. I know right, that isn’t chic, hip or even socially classy, but I’m not in this for the game, I’m in it for real!. It is rare that I buy new furniture.
I buy used cars. I see the stockpile of used cars in this country and the lots overloaded with new vehicles. They set it up to buy new, less interest rates, longer terms. Car dealers make it hard to buy used. I can’t bring myself to do it. I buy great, good conditioned, well taken care of, used cars. My current one is Ultra low emissions car. I also drive my cars until they are almost dead. I know, I don’t need a fancy car, I want to help the environment. If people don’t like it, oh well.
I’m frugal, which means I saw money, it also means I don’t buy things I know I won’t use for long. I buy for long term. I also save the environment by being frugal.
I repair instead of replace. I buy products that have replacement parts. Throw away products isn’t my thing.
I drink water and so does my family. Water, filtered of course but WATER! That’s about all you’ll find in our refrigerator. Why because it is what our bodies need, it saves money, and it saves the environment.
I take unused water, in my house and water my plants. I rarely pour water down the drain. It’s so simple, take the glass of water UN-drank water pour it on my plants.
We make due without lots of the time. Because it just makes environmental sense, to not buy if you don’t have to. So, there are many things we just don’t do. I don’t need the newest state of the art anything. If it works and does the job, I’m happy.
I have used office supplies I’ve re-used for decades. Stapler, file folders, calculators, hole punch, etc. I’ve had them for over 20 years. They work. That’s what matters.
We use low Voc and no Voc paint in our home.
I’ve left my house siding as it is because it doesn’t need to look better to serve the social status, or fit it. I’ve decided that until that point that my house “has” to have new siding, The siding it has is just fine. Paint it, and leave it on the house instead of in the landfill. It just doesn’t make sense to throw it in the landfill.
We buy bulk, we also make our own. This keeps down the need for containers. I also re-use containers that our food comes in. It isn’t pretty but it keeps them out of the landfill. It works.
I buy with conscious and commitment. I don’t buy to fit in. I buy clothing that is well made and will last years, and I’ll love wearing it. Buying hip is great, buying quality is better, and if it is hip, which most of mine are, I get double the benefits. I haven’t stopped being fashionable, I’m just wise.
These are just a few of the things I do, to keep my lifestyle “Green” my ethics high, and my commitment in place, not just for future generations, but for us NOW. My family has learned a “Greener” lifestyle. A trend of being Greener, more sustainable, more in tune with living a cleaner lifestyle.
So, when I hear the discussions of making companies adhere to more tight guidelines and possibly hurting small businesses that really are trying their best to make a difference. I cringe, I support their efforts, they have to start somewhere, it isn’t all or nothing. It’s about starting the ball rolling and then allowing it to snowball. Creating a more positive outlook on Climate Change and being a Greener Healthier world. Getting people excited about learning a new way of life. It’s about being open.
This isn’t a competition people, it;s a call to action. No one needs to be a Green Eco Nazi. Just walk your talk, live your life as Green as you can, tell people how you do it, what’s in your heart and watch the trend grow. It can be so effortless. It doesn’t have to be overwhelming and depressing because you can’t do it all.
Let the excitement of being green become a way of spreading love and acceptance in the world. Let’s leave the battles aside. Let’s all just get excited about “ Being Green” leave the keeping up with the Jones, behind us. Find our way to be happy with less.
It’s Hip To Be Green and it feels so good to live it, be it, and spread it around. Every step you take is a step in the right direction. It doesn’t have to be overwhelming, it can be fun! It’s Hip To Be Green®