My December One Small Change, of getting rid of junk mail is starting to show that it is working. You should see how slim our pile of mail is everyday. It is amazing! We still have random junk mail coming, and I will immediately call or email that company to get us off their mailing list. It feels good! I urge everyone to do the same.
My January One Small Change was supposed to be three small changes but I found out a little fact that shocked me, so it went down to two. I focused my small changes on recycling this month. I wanted to take steps to recycle everyday household items that we tend to throw away. So I researched how to recycle light bulbs and batteries. I hate throwing these things away and knew if I did some research I could find out how to recycle them. While doing my research I found that you can not recycle household incandescent light bulbs any where in Oregon, other than the florescent kind. I hate throwing away all these light bulbs! Maybe I need to think of a crafty way to reuse them! Any ideas?
We use a lot of batteries in our home between cameras, flashes, toys, and electronics. Every type of battery we use has chemicals inside of it. The worst chemicals you can find in some batteries are lead, cadmium, and mercury. I know that sending any type of battery to the land fill will lead to these chemicals getting into our soil, air, groundwater, and surface water. So my goal is to make sure these batteries stop going into the landfills. So this month, I grabbed a glass jar and set it on our desk and this is where all of our dead batteries go. Come to find out, my husband had been keeping a stash of old batteries in a drawer, knowing that they can be recycled. I love that we share the same goals and how in sync we are with our thoughts! I did some research on where I can take household batteries to recycle. I started at the Portland Metro website (awesome organization & website!), they have a tool that tells you where you can recycle all different types of household items. This tool will definitely be put to use by my family. It then directed me to Pride Recycling Depot, which will take up to 1 quart of batteries for free. SOLD! This Monday I will be taking my batteries there and I will continue to do this every time that glass jar fills up. And what a fun learning field trip for my son and I! I am curious to know where the batteries go after Pride takes them, so I am going to ask them when I drop it off and report back to you all!
For those of you that are local to the Portland area and looking to recycle household items that they don't pick up curbside, go to Metro's website. For everyone else who isn't local, Earth911.com is a great resource and can lead you to your local recycling centers.
My other small change was signing the Oregon Ban the Bag petition. In Oregon we are urging our state legislature to pass the Senate Bill 536 that promotes the use of reusable bags and bans the use of plastic check out bags. These petroleum made, plastic check out bags are one of the greatest environmental horrors that we face today. It contributes to the large amount of plastic that is found in our oceans and garbage around our streets, hurting our wildlife. It also requires 12 million barrels of oil a year to make these bags. YUK! Please sign this petition!
Thanks for reading my really long One Small Change blog. I had a lot to say this month, I guess! Next month I kind of have a big project that ties in with my One Small Change. I also signed up for a local tree planting and a SOLV street clean-up for the month of February. I will write all about my February changes this weekend. If you would like to read why I joined the One Small Change, click here or to join the campaign click here.
Be well, friends,
“Don’t blow it - good planets are hard to find.” -Quoted in Time Magazine