Consumption & Portland, ME
We are all guilty of consuming....but talk to me after this video and tell me this doesn't change your perspective. When I saw this a few years ago it put the DIY-me into overdrive.
I am constantly trying to find ways to re-use things that I already own. Oh, and if I'm buying something new I try to find something recyclable, long lasting, or super high quality so I don’t have to replace it every couple of years, at the least.
This revelation wasn’t something that happened overnight for me. It was a slow, but constant shift that evolved the more I learned about the environment and human consumption. Many of us were never aware of the importance of taking care of the planet, but now that we know we only have one chance to make it right....we can try our darndest to love it right!
Did you know?
"The average person now consumes twice as much as they did 50 years ago...." DANG!
Several Things I Love about Portland, ME
My husband and I moved to Portland from (most recently) Fayetteville, AR. WOW! What a difference it is to be back (I'm from MA) to living somewhere where the people seem to care a bit more about reusing & recycling.
My top planet-love happenings in Portland:
Tax on Bottles & Cans
When you return your bottles/cans your deposit is returned along with them! This sounds like a no-brainer, but they didn’t implement this in Arkansas which led to people throwing their cans ”away”...where is that again?
When we lived in MI it was $.10 per can! When I brought my cans back I felt like a millionaire. Cha Ching $. According to NPR people actually smuggle cans into Michigan. And for that, I can't blame them!
A Great Recycling Program
Not only do they have single-sort bins, but they accept all plastics #1-7. That’s a miracle! Look at how much plastic I had to throw away when I lived in Fayetteville (they didn’t accept #1 or #5):
Garbage to Garden
A curbside composting program that replaces your filled food-waste bucket with a fresh new one once per week. This program does cost monthly, but you can volunteer once a month and have the fee waived. It’s significantly reduced the amount of waste we produce and we take our garbage out now once every 2-3 weeks.
Conservation Law Foundation (CLF)
A foundations whose vision is to protect Maines air, land & water for all.
For 50 years, CLF has put local knowledge and legal expertise to work for Maine’s people and communities. They blocked an oil refinery in Eastport that would have devastated its pristine harbor, brought alewives back to the St. Croix River, and stopped a destructive and unnecessary dam on the Penobscot. Today, they're fighting to make our air and water cleaner, protect our climate, and create safe and healthy communities for all.
All of this to say...
I truly love it here in Portland. People who live here seem to wear it with pride. Of course, I'm no "Mainer" because none of my family is from here, but I still have mad love for Portland and the surrounding areas.
Did I mention that Portland has the most restaurants per capita in the US? Well...that could be misleading because the population isn't very large. But that still means that it's a foodie town with people who care about the quality of the food they consume and serve to others. It's an exciting place to be! I love cooking at home, but there is nothing like a special night out on the town at a new restaurant. Yay Portland! Thanks for being awesome.
I hope that reading the above info & watching the video made ya want to take one small step toward showing our environment more love and ease you toward buying less stuff.
Need some ideas?
Bring your own mug to the coffee shop today,
recycle or reuse that glass jar from the spaghetti sauce you finished,
reuse that one paper towel you used earlier,
or better yet try using real towels instead of paper towels,
use real dishware instead of disposables,
make more one pot meals at home (think less dishes, less water, less time spent!)
There are many baby steps you can take toward living a more mindful version of you. Choose just one today and you can start making an impact!
Peace, love & cozy kitchens,