Thursday, July 29, 2010

Simple ways to conserve

I have this lingering suspicion that most people equate conservation to just recycling plastic. Few of them expand it to switching off lights, saving water and maybe planting a tree or 2.

Surely, we can and should do more than that.

So, I write this long pending thoughts on how I perceive conservation as.

First Reduce, then try to Reuse and after that Recycle whats left.
(You can see many more R's at Saahas website ( where I volunteer whenever I can.)

Some ways each and every one of us can conserve and save the precious resources of our planet:

1. Reduce use of plastic covers. Just get into the habit of carrying a coir/plastic bag and let the shop keeper know. Most will oblige as each plastic cover costs anywhere from 40ps to 5 Rs. When you buy something like a loaf of bread or packet of chips, decline the use of another plastic cover to put it in! Carry tupperware or other utensils for take-outs from local Darshini's.

2. Don't waste food, especially at Buffets. Take little of unknown items and get more only if you like it. Instead of piling something that looks nice and then find out you don't like it! People argue with me on how that saves food since the hotel/hosts have already cooked it anyway. I feel, once we all eat the right amount of quantity without wasting, they will adjust the estimations accordingly and what they prepare for say 100 people will come down. Also, food left over in many cases is donated.

3. Walk locally. Try and walk to all close locations. Anything up to 1km (15mins) and even 2km (30mins) should be doable. You get a workout, save petrol and reduce traffic congestion! If you have to drive, combine the errands in that direction so that you avoid multiple trips. Check, if a phone call/letter is enough.

4. Use less paper. Print only when required. Be judicious in the use of tissue papers at restaurants. Reuse blank papers. Don't throw away sheets which have one side blank. Use it for rough work like sketching or tests for kids and then recycle.

5. Reduce your consumption. There is too much stress on convenience. Think many times if youe need that new dress/shoes/gadget/book/pen/car/.... This is a tough choice in our materialistic world. However, if we opt out of even 10% of our purchases, it will make a huge difference overall in resource consumption.

All these points should be gently passed on to our kids to help them develop good habits early in their life.

If you can think of more, please add in the comments below.

Lets try to be smart and not doom ourselves and the future generations..