What's YOUR Footprint?

No, not your shoe size. Your ecological footprint. I've taken the footprint quiz before...but Jessica's blog reminded me how much I love to try to lower my score. Right now, my footprint is at 5 acres. In comparison, the average footprint in the U.S. is 24 acres. Worldwide, there are enough resources for each person to have 4.5 acres. So that puts me .5 over my "allotted" acres and now I must REDUCE so I can stop using up more than my share of the resources! Here are some other changes that I would like to make:

  • Eat a completely vegan diet. I have eaten a vegetarian diet for a little over 2 years now, but have gone back and forth between vegan and vegetarian. For those of you that don't know, a vegan is someone who eats no animal products at all (no milk, eggs, butter, etc.)
  • Walk more. This is a little harder in the wintry cold and ice...especially because our neighborhood is very hilly! I will implement this more in the summer. It's so easy because we are within walking distance to everything.
  • I have always wanted to use public transportation more. However, Des Moines has a really poor system. I have contacted the metro transit authority with route questions, etc. and I want to try it soon! I am definitely not used to riding the bus, so it will be an experience. It takes more time and planning, but I love the idea of it. Much more relaxing than driving myself. There is a possibility that we will park the bus this winter and become a one-car family again, so the bus may be a necessity!
  • Focus on buying only package-free foods and less processed foods. Right now our only "processed foods" are chips, bread, almond milk, and cereal. I'm not counting condiments. I would like to start making my own bread again, make my own almond milk more consistently, my own granola, and my own chips. Does anyone know of any good tortilla chip recipes!?
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle... I am learning more about this everyday. I am actively reducing my belongings and I am reducing the amount coming in (The Compact). I am re-using plastic bags, jars, clothes, I use cloth everything in our household, and I recycle everything that is allowed.
  • I would like to be even more conscious of my energy and water consumption.

There will always be something to "work on" when you're living green...but that's what makes life fun!

Photo credit: Flickr/pingnews.com