255 Days ’til 40: Carbon Footprint Week, Day 2

11 Jun

On day two of my one week quest to document the carbon footprint my family is making, I must admit that I am embarrassed – we made more of an impact today than yesterday………

2 of these larger water bottles were used and recycled

4 of these, smaller water bottles were used and recycled

One of these was used, then recycled

2 of these were thrown away (yes, I have no clue where glass recycling is in our city!)

This box was thrown away after my daughters ate their cereal (I know, totally not in line with the health nut I normally am – they suckered me into this purchase!!!)

I had to get through some plastic wrappers to get to my mid-morning snack….

My mid-morning snack, on a plastic plate (I know, I know……..)

Look at how much waste to eat packaged popcorn!!!  First the box……

Then the plastic wrap……

And, finally, the paper bag – ahh… the joys of processed foods!  (It DID taste good!!!)

My partner ate cheese from this plastic container today and then threw it away…..

We used the last of a vitamin and paracetamol bottle today – so they went into the garbage…..

Still that time of the month for some in this home……

A few pieces of candy attacked and their wrappers went in the bin….

I used the last of the box at dinner and the box was tossed

We ate dinner on plastic plates with plastic forks (usually we do not, I was really lazy tonight – I know that was bad!)

The cat wanted food (the nerve!)

My girls (identical) lunches for tomorrow each have a drinking yogurt, eating yogurt, plastic spoon, raisins in a box, and a sandwich in a (supposedly) bio-degradable plastic bag…….

My lunch for tomorrow – two small cottage cheese containers (plastic), one small meat container (plastic) and two bags of vegetables in supposedly bio-degradable plastic bags….

And most went into the bag and into the garbage bin……..

Today, 255 days ’til 40, I am embarrassed by how much waste we produced…. wow, scary!  I am hoping tomorrow will be better because we will all be at work/ school and a bit more limited in our ability to consume products and make waste…. we will see!

What are you noticing about your carbon footprint???



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24 responses to “255 Days ’til 40: Carbon Footprint Week, Day 2

  1. silverbells2012

    June 11, 2012 at 00:46

    I think the biggest impact I have is in the use of my car. It would be difficult to do without it but I could walk to the local shop (about half a mile away), for instance. Apart from that, plastic does seem to be the main thing we throw away, as so much of it is not considered recyclable. That said, we don’t drink fizzy drinks or buy much in the way of convenience food and I use a mooncup instead of disposable sanitary wear (which cost me the price of about half a weeks’ food and will probably last me till the menopause).
    If it was just me, then it would be easier but with kids… no matter how firm I am about not buying this and that, I do succumb to pester power and the desire not to make my daughter the odd kid in the class. Still, with more and more people becoming interested in looking after the environment, it’s not as bad as it would have been when I was her age 🙂

    • 400daystil40

      June 11, 2012 at 10:28

      You are so correct about the impact of a car……. and the female product alternatives can be amazing (but not so great for our young women in our household who are not yet really ready to handle their bodies and are still struggling with the realities of being mature)….. day by day. Like you said, it gets much harder in all areas when kids are around and we need to pick our battles and carefully choose what to focus on.

  2. bellissimom

    June 11, 2012 at 00:49

    I shutter to think what ours looks like right now with a baby in diapers. We are trying to use cloth diapers as much as possible.

    • 400daystil40

      June 11, 2012 at 10:24

      Ah yes, we were horrible in those days! I tried the cloth diapers, but my poor daughter reacted to them and we had to use disposable ones….

  3. Spijder

    June 11, 2012 at 01:42

    For those glass bottles (and even a few of those others) you might want to look for DIY or upcycling sites, many have some great and easy ideas to make use of many things that can’t be tossed in the recycling bin.

  4. Kinenchen

    June 11, 2012 at 03:38

    My footprint dropped dramatically when I started commuting by train instead of by car (bicycle was too dangerous or I’d still be doing it). The most dramatic reduction by far came when I went vegan, almost a full order of magnitude difference from my carnist carbon footprint.

    • 400daystil40

      June 11, 2012 at 10:26

      Very good point! We are very car dependent (but at least we went from two to one)…. as for the vegan thing….. we have one vegetarian in our home (ironically, who eats the most processed food of us all) and three meat lovers……

      • Kinenchen

        June 11, 2012 at 16:09

        It’s all about priorities. 😉

  5. Lucianus Mauricius

    June 11, 2012 at 04:12

    Well, thank goodness I’m not as bad as you :P, but I did throw out two pizza boxes (1 family size, 1 middle size) which I ate with such delight but had no use for the carton boxes, and just one plastic shopping bag of garbage after 48 hours of filling it with stuff. I’m sure I’ll do worse in the coming days. I always recycle soda bottles and 10 liter water containers, that’s one bright spot. 😀

    • 400daystil40

      June 11, 2012 at 10:29

      Ah, hmmm, maybe I should order pizza and have those boxes???? We LOVE pizza in our family! I agree – I also take any bright spot in my recycling….. it helps lesson the guilt for all that I do not do!

  6. stitchknit

    June 11, 2012 at 08:41

    Love your blog! I’ve just nominated you for a Versatile Blogger Award. See the post here, with the details & links:

    • 400daystil40

      June 11, 2012 at 10:30

      Wow, thank you so much!!!!! This is so kind of you and was such a great way to start my day!!!!! 🙂

      • stitchknit

        June 12, 2012 at 02:49

        You’re so welcome! I enjoyed your posts about your carbon footprint. I was doing so well with this, then I moved in to care for my mom, and the whole project went out the window. She just doesn’t care…..or remember……..or both! 🙂

        • 400daystil40

          June 12, 2012 at 19:19

          Thank you…. I can understand how life’s circumstances changes our ability to be committed to reducing our footprint…. I am sure it will be easier for me when my children are grown and out of the house!

  7. Viveka

    June 11, 2012 at 11:21

    Through this mission you’re on – you probably notice how much waste we really go through in a day. Looked up on the net how we Swedes are doing with our recycling – 85% of us recycle right – that is a pretty high figure. Every proud over that. And like the Dutch and Danish we love our bikes.

    • 400daystil40

      June 11, 2012 at 23:12

      It looks like you Swedes are doing a MUCH better job than we are!!!

  8. bekahdu handmade

    June 11, 2012 at 12:56

    Wow, I find this interesting from another perspective. Over here (Australia) most of that can just go in our recycle bin. Pretty much all plastic, glass, cardboard and paper is recyclable and goes in the recycle bin. It is sorted by hand at the recycle centre. We usually have one small garbage bag in the bottom of the rubbish bin and an overflowing recycle bin! I tend not to buy snacks in small packages, I buy a bulk bag and split it myself…yogurt, sultanas etc. my kids also have lunch boxes with lots of compartments so I don’t wrap sandwiches or anything, they all just go in a separate slot…very handy. I think my biggest impact again would be petrol, but as we live in a regional area, I have to do lots of driving!

    • 400daystil40

      June 11, 2012 at 23:09

      Wow, that is really cool that everything is so much friendlier there! I would love lunch boxes with compartments so that I do not need to use bags constantly! At least their main lunch box is reusable! (Though they do manage to destroy 1-2 a year!) I also am a big petrol consumer, unfortunately… 😦 This summer, when I am off work and can be more flexible in where I go to shop, etc. I plan to use the bus and train…. at least for the month…. every little bit helps, right???

  9. The Quiet Borderline

    June 11, 2012 at 15:48

    I admit it, I use disposable plates and spoons, OK and paper cups for my morning breakfast and coffee. Since I’ve been in the rehab program I’ve done so. Big time laziness. Maybe I’ll start using my ceramic bowls and stuff.

    • 400daystil40

      June 11, 2012 at 23:05

      Yea, I hear you – that is often the case with me….. I have the nice stuff but sometimes I just don’t have the energy to deal with it later and I want to be able to throw it away and be done with it. I do use a coffee mug at work that I clean every day instead of using disposable cups…. so at least I am doing that much!

  10. narf77

    June 13, 2012 at 23:28

    Its so easy for people to feel guilty these days when to be honest, if you live in a city, its a bit more difficult to be (like Kermit said) green. Maybe you could find where your local bottle bank is? You can also recycle cardboard. We have a curbside recycling bin that deals with steel, plastics, aluminium, and glass. Why isn’t this service available in the USA? This is uppercumbuckance Australia on the tail end of the world! You seem to use a lot of prepackaged foods. Again, its easy for people to judge what other people do and a lot harder for them to look at their own carbon footprint. At least you ARE recycling the plastic water bottles. It might be fun to head over to to see if you cant find a way to use some of your plastic waste. You and your girls might be able to laminate some plastic or something else and at least feel a bit better about not throwing some of it out whilst being able to learn a new skill in the process? Just check out the “Green” tab and there are HEAPS of ideas for how to reuse, recycle and repurpose


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