Wednesday, December 15, 2010

5 painless green changes

I had no idea that talking about "climate change" could make my friends become so... how can I say this... emotional.

A few days ago, I posted on Facebook that I had just watched Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth" and that I was ashamed the USA wasn't doing more to curb its greenhouse gas emissions. Within one day, my post drew 13 reactions from both Switzerland and the USA. Opinions were mixed. Some got personal.
"Diana, don't believe everything you see in a movie! Climategate showed us something. And the claims of that movie are well… "

"If they [pro-oil lobbies and government officials] didn't have anything to hide, why would they have worked so hard to muddy the waters? Aren't their ridiculously vigorous denials and attacks proof perfect of their culpability?" 

"Sorry, that film has been widely discredited. Al should have quit after he invented the Internet... "

The Swiss alpine folk don't even think about climate change, they just live this way.

Five easy green changes to live like the Swiss alpine folk

  1. Walk everywhere: Walking burns calories. Your legs will gain muscle and definition. Your butt and thighs will get smaller. I meditate while I walk. Sometimes, I meet people and friends along the way. I get fresh air and sunlight on my face, helping with the 'winter blues.' Swiss alpine folk walk everywhere, and don't seem to need anti-depressants.

  2. Lower the thermostat: I try to keep my house at under 18C (64F) but it's hard. Since I've done this, I haven't had one sinus infection and my skin seems smoother and less dry than before. I have to wear sweaters and long pants. So what? Swiss alpine folk didn't have fancy heating systems. They used wood stoves to heat their living room/kitchen areas. They slept in unheated spaces.

  3. Vacation at home: My home is more comfortable than any five star hotel. There's no stress getting around. Swiss alpine folk didn't travel much, being content to stay in their villages. They loved their homes, their landscape and took care of their surroundings. Farmers contribute to the beauty of the landscape by maintaining the land.

  4. Eat food in season: I try to forgo buying foods that are out of season and that had to be flown in. Such produce tastes like cardboard. Fresh from the vine tastes much better. I make exceptions for oranges, chocolate and coffee. Also, I sometimes can't wait to taste strawberries. So I will buy them earlier in Spring when they come from Spain. Swiss alpine folk didn't buy exotic foods. They were perfectly healthy eating canned vegetables, cheese, and vegetables grown in their own gardens.

  5. Avoid plastic: Not only is plastic super ugly, it's made of oil. Plus, things made of plastic cannot be repaired as easily as things made out of wood, glass, or metal. Swiss Alpine folk fix everything. When they buy something, it's to last a lifetime.

I hope the scientists in Gore's film are wrong, but in case they're not, at least I am trying to do my little bit and not polluting the air, water and land... and I am doing something for myself in the process.

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