Monday 22 April 2013

happy earth day! (I think . . .)

I used to happily chirp Happy Earth Day! each 22nd of April.  Not to mention Happy Clean Up Australia Day! and Happy Earth Hour! and of course, Happy World Environment Day!

As I became more involved in environmentalism I frequently heard the opinion that Earth Day should be everyday, and we shouldn't just focus on one hour if the rest of the time we don't think twice about flipping all the lights on at home. Of course I'd counteract with claims of increasing awareness and encouraging behaviour change, but in fact, there is research to suggest that promoting small eco-changes doesn't ultimately lead to lifelong environmental behaviour after all. (I will certainly be reviewing this research in greater detail!) 

But given my inherent desire to celebrate, well, pretty much anything, I can't let Earth Day slip by without some sort of recognition. And this year I'm taking inspiration from Earth Hour 2013 and its emphasis on taking it Beyond the Hour and encouraging you to make a commitment that will go beyond a day today by asking . . .

How will you be greener by Earth Day 2014? 


Image copyright Sacromento Scoop

What aspect of green living or environmentalism can you can adopt into your lifestyle that will last, and hopefully bring a continued amount of awareness to you and those around you? Perhaps you will . . .
  • Purchase only sustainable fashion (ethical, eco, vintage and swaps)
  • Commit to Meatless Mondays or Weekday Vegetarianism
  • Change to renewable energy in your home
  • Switch your superfund or retirement savings to an ethical investment firm (Divest!)
  • Increase the amount you travel by public transport (or foot or bicycle) and decrease the amount you drive
  • Attend every eco-event in your city during the year
Or a million other options that are more relevant to your lifestyle - only you know what will make the largest impact in your day to day life.


I had to think for awhile on this one. Not because I'm a complete eco-goddess (yet!) but because I'm about to move countries and can't imagine all the ways my life will be different by this time next year.  But I think I've got it . . .

Since I'm moving to the United States, steeped in a rich history of free speech and activism, I am going to commit to become more involved in my political system as an advocate for environmental policy changes. I don't know exactly what it will look like just yet, but I'm putting my commitment here in writing, and I will definitely keep you all updated on how I become involved.

So, what are you willing to put in writing?  I'd love to hear from you!

In the meantime, Happy Earth Day! Here's looking at a greener lifestyle for all of us by this time next year.


Wednesday 10 April 2013

a green s'well fling

With Sydney offering up some of the best beach days of the year this week, I can't tell you how happy I am to be able to sip ice cold water from my beautiful blue water bottle. And no, I'm not putting ice cubes in it - this bottle is double-walled, providing amazing insulation.

S'well bottles sure are, well, swell.  (I'm sorry, I had to pun!) Not only do they live up to my high style standards, the insulation is remarkable. Cold liquid stays cold for 24 hours, hot liquid stays hot for 12 hours, with none of the bulky plastic, foam or neoprene you may expect. Even after sitting in a hot car or sizzling under the Sydney sun, my water comes out fresh and cold.

Even better, S'well is a partner with WaterAid, an organisation that works to bring clean water to some of the world's poorest communities. To date, WaterAid has reached over 14 million people around the globe. Given the fact that over 2 million people die from water-related illness each year, this is an organisation that I'll happily support.

S'well bottles come in a range of fantastic colours and sizes - even one perfect for bringing chilled wine on a picnic - so if you're in the market for a new reusable beverage vessel, this one comes with my seal of approval!

I bought my bottle in California last year, but you can purchase them in Australia from Shop Naturally under the name of Beautiful Beaches (I don't know if they support WaterAid). You can definitely forego the neoprene pouch - they are self-insulating and don't need anything extra.

If you buy one, let me know what colour you get, it's a tough decision . . .