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Question of the Week: What are your New Year’s resolutions to help protect the environment in 2009?

2009 January 5

Each week we ask a question related to the environment. Please let us know your thoughts as comments. Feel free to respond to earlier comments or post new ideas. Previous questions.

Happy New Year! I will drive more efficiently. I will start a compost pile. I will read pesticide labels. I will …

Share what YOU will do in the coming year to help protect the environment.

What are your New Year’s resolutions to help protect the environment in 2009?

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

141 Responses leave one →
  1. Rhonda permalink
    January 7, 2009

    You can check out http://www.earth911.com You put in what you’re looking to recycle, your zip code, and it lists the places. Not always the most up to date, but a good place to start.

  2. Yolanda permalink
    January 7, 2009

    I ordered a recycle bin from my local waste management facility and it will be delivered in 7 to 10 days. Until then I am reusing my water bottles at home until it comes.

  3. Vince Page permalink
    January 8, 2009

    My resolution is to bring to the attention of the EPA (hopefully though this post) that the issue of how best to regulate vehicle emissions and fuel efficiency needs to be addressed. In the U.S. we use separate CAFE standards for vehicle fuel efficiency because our emission regulations do not take efficiency into account. European emission regulations are specified in grams per kilometer rather than parts per million. The former takes into account the lower fuel consumption of higher efficiency vehicles whereas the latter does not. This is the single greatest reason why European automobiles routinely get better gas milage than their American counterparts. We need to standardize on the European emission methodology. A single standard would also make it less expensive for our auto manufacturers to compete globally.

  4. Lenita Leufkens permalink
    January 8, 2009

    I will write (and pass) the LEED AP exam. I will educate others on the importance of waste reduction (in terms of both energy and materials) whenever possible. I will not buy things (clothes, food, cosmetics) that I do not need….and I will try to buy local and natural and whole whenever possible.

  5. George permalink
    January 8, 2009

    First of all, I will expand my knowledge (low) on the subject of care, management and interaction with the environment and thus contribute to improving our home, our planet earth. I’m going to recycle, sort organic and inorganic waste, make compost. Saving electricity and water: buy light bulbs that use less wattage, turn off lamps that are not needed, reducing water flow in showers, toilets, faucets. Begin to design and build a sort of hot water using solar radiation to the shower. tilizare bicycle to go to the campus with more frequency. Plant a tree or more. buy organic products is produced with organic fertilizer and it is important to develop awareness with regard to biodegradable packaging, forget the polyethylene, polystyrene which cause so much harm to the environment.

  6. josephine M. Rakow, D.O. permalink
    January 8, 2009

    Brian G,

    F.Y.I. “Water Spill Kills McLean Fish”
    hyyp://www.fairfaxtimes.com/news/2008/apr/o2/water-spill-kills-mcclean/fish/
    https:www.ec.gc.ca/CEPARegistry/subs_list/Chloramines_BG.cfm

  7. Zoe permalink
    January 8, 2009

    I have pledged to eat a strictly vegetarian diet, as well as to purchase offsets for the amount of carbon the average American produces in one year. I will offset any flights I take, and invest in longer-term reusable products, like a reusable water bottle, as well as try to purchase used, recycled, organic, local or biodegradable items whenever possible.

  8. Josephine M. Rakow, D.O. permalink
    January 9, 2009

    Yes, Brian G (to continue our discussion as to why we do not want chloramine as the secondary disinfectant for our drinking water) chloramine leaches lead from our water pipes. No lead is acceptable for infants and children. It causes neurological damage, hearing disorders, learning disorders. Scientists world-wide are studying and reporting on these problems. Chloramine in water storage tanks and pipes causes nitrofication. NDMA nitrosamines are the most toxic substance known to man. If you want to learn about lead leaching and pitting of copper pipes review the research of Marc Edwards, Civil Engineer at V. Tech. He is known worldwide as “The Water Guy.” His research is on going and started many years ago. He is dedicated to working and speaking for the most vulnerable of our society–our infants and children, Your comments re: chloramine not being toxic to small children and fish are demeaning and it is obvious that you have not done your homework. Josephine M. Rakow, D.O.

  9. Anonymous permalink
    January 9, 2009

    I will be turning off my cable tv boxes at night. They are big energy draws even when tv isn’t on. Only heard this recently.

  10. Hypocrite permalink
    January 9, 2009

    Get over it…there’s no imminent doom for our planet. You are completely brainwashed – if our planet survived the 19th and 20th century with all of its unregulated environmental abuses (world war, atomic bomb testing, etc.), it will certainly survive our generation. I agree with being practical (just makes good sense to save money), but you militant environmentalists are just silly and (apparently) pretty gullible. Carbon offsets for 2x the amount for your family – hah! How about Diva Cups (if you don’t know about them, please look it up)!

    Remember, America has made significant gains in terms of cleaning up our environment over the years. I rightly believe that this has and will continue to make a difference (and avert our pending doom). Don’t deny us this progress! You overly enthusiastic environmental militants will turn people away from your cause with your condensing attitude and holier-than-thou personalities. Just look at those obnoxious anti-smoking campaigns (e.g, the Truth) – does anyone else just wanna start smoking cigs after seeing those commercials?

  11. Greenjeans permalink
    January 9, 2009

    Everyone should stop using Dihydrogen Monoxide completely. It is very corrosive and toxic

  12. Emily permalink
    January 9, 2009

    I am trying to use as few plastic or paper grocery bags as possible this year. I’ve stocked up on reusable bags and to make myself accountable, I’m using zeaLOG.com to keep track of how many bags I do use. http://zealog.com/zealogs/bags-of-the-plastic-and-or-paper-variety I realize I’m starting small, but starting small is still starting. :)

  13. Matt permalink
    January 10, 2009

    We already have a low footprint and no car. This year, we’ll use only reusable bags and charge batteries only on solar electricity

  14. Joyce permalink
    January 11, 2009

    Buy more products made from recycled items.

  15. Mary R permalink
    January 11, 2009

    My new environment, which I moved to because it was the country, is loaded with tires builders refuse, sofas, water tanks.
    I want to seek some kind of long term solution to this problem. At the moment I’m trying to think of a way that would be friendly to everyone. A lot of this comes from DIY-ers who have no other place to get rid of this stuff.
    It seems to me that we need to legislate this so we can have a way of dealing with this monumental problem. Iwalk in state forests, gamelands, etc. The areas must have at least a few thousand tires. Not to mention the other stuff!
    Every community should have a reasonable way to allow for these discards to be processed. With the gas prices the way they were, no ne was willing or able to take to the dump. Any brainstorming on any one else’s part would be great. Thanks

  16. Mary G permalink
    January 12, 2009

    And YOU’RE not using proper grammar!!!!

    Who is silly now?

  17. Mary G permalink
    January 12, 2009

    Why would you only use public transportation for the office? The trains will run whether you are on them or not. The same goes for elevators and escalators. If you’re trying to get some exercise in, that’s one thing, but please keep in mind that the elevator flies up and down all day – whether you’re on it or not.

    And, purchasing a new tv – on the basis of lower energy consumption – is a complete waste. It’s actually more “green” to continue to use your old tv until it breaks – THEN buy an energy efficient one. Otherwise, you’ll be saving energy, but destroying the earth with carcinogen laden landfills.

  18. Angelena Peter permalink
    January 13, 2009

    Use a reusable shopping bag instead of the single use disposable plastic grocery bags. The Wall Street Journal estimates U.S. consumers use 100 billion single-use plastic bags every year.

  19. Randy Dutton permalink
    January 14, 2009

    To raise public awareness of ecopoliticians trying to wrest control of public and private resources through false science, their socialist agenda, and redistribution of wealth. To educate the public and media as to real CO2 science and CO2 effect on plant growth.

  20. Kricket Caffery permalink
    January 16, 2009

    Yes, I am collaborating with some folks to do a project, the Habitats Environmental Project, with 3rd to 5th graders teaching them about how human made pollution and environmental degradation impacts habitats in the pacific northwest.

    Our project includes trash clean-up from wilderness areas, household materials re-claiming by community members across Oregon and Washington.

    We’ll go to classrooms, talk about the project and why, do an art project and then the program culminates with an interactive habitats show where the props, costumes, and scenery are made from the trash and materials collected by the community!

    Check us out and please tell others! http://www.kricketskritters.com/habitats-project.html

    Be sure to get on our mailing list!

  21. Jacob Zabarte permalink
    January 16, 2009

    I apologize for my non-related reply. I would like to keep in contact with you. jakezbroncosfan@yahoo.com if your interested sir.
    Jacob A Zabarte

  22. Abhigna permalink
    January 17, 2009

    To educate people about renewable resources like CNG and LPG and to use them myself. To organize a clean-up campaign in the neighborhood.

  23. Al Purrinos permalink
    January 18, 2009

    Yes, my company is helping the enviroment by allowing many of their employees to work from their houses 9e.g. telecommuniting). This will help the enviroment in many different ways …
    1) Save gas on ~ 20 employees

    2) Reduce pollution produced by the transpotation

    3) Save energy by not having to iron clothes to go to work (also save energy at the local laundries)

    There are many other social and individual benefits in telecommuting. However, there are also some risks e.g. loss in productivity.

    That may seem little, but it is sa step in the right direction.

    In the business, we are expanding our inventory of privately owned vacation homes to help our clients save by staying in a vacation home as an alternative to hotel rooms. That promotes group traveling, which also helps the environment. If more people travel in groups, there may be a greater enviromental impact.

  24. Anonymous permalink
    January 21, 2009

    Stop poluting

  25. SaraJean permalink
    February 2, 2009

    As a reply to both you, Marlene and Recycle Racoon, I have definately been much more lazy at home than at work when it comes to recycling. It was part of my New Year’s resolution to get more organized, and the environment will benefit as well. I purchased reusable containers for my recycling waste and set them up in a convienient place instead of just throwing everything in the trash. My community already has a great recycling program, now I am set up to take better advantage of it and reduce my trash! Yeah me!

  26. Beatriz Carpente permalink
    February 23, 2009

    El amor a la naturaleza debe de ser sembrado en los jóvenes.

    La formación debe de difiundirse en las Universidades , en las escuelas , los jóvenes integran el mayor compromiso con el futuro del mundo, de ellos nace la fuerza para modificar el presente.

    Si se siembra éste amor la implicación con la naturaleza será parte de la vida de cada ser.

    Personalmente escribo en los medios para que se sigan produciendo cambios relacionados con la consciencia del ser humano hacia el medio ambiente es importante que en los medios escritos , audiovisuales y medios masivos existan espacios que hablen de la naturaleza y el medio ambiente ,así como de campañas que involucren a los jóvenes, me pareció espectacular el surf y el medio ambiente ,una forma alegre de llegar.

    Todo lo que sea para bien del mundo debe de ser difundido.

  27. Tess Evans permalink
    February 25, 2009

    Our current environmental condition is damaging the human condition. The carbon levels are rising in the atmosphere, polar ice caps are melting, and habitats are corrupt resulting in the extinction of distinct species. Not only these, but the temperature of our earth is rising, and the UV rays are scorching our crust. The question now is, what has to be done to change the inevitable?

    One of the most important steps is to drastically decrease carbon emissions and fuel excretion from every single vehicle built by man. Forget the cost, do it to save our planet. The next step is to destroy the harmful greenhouse gases escaping into our ozone and creating threatening voids where there should be protection. Lastly, everyone should promote healthy habitats for animals that aid in fertilization and distributes life in the form of oxygen. No one should construct businesses or houses at sacred places, that make our land beautiful, which pollutes the environment with choking hazards.

    It is ridiculous how much time is burned just brainstorming when our crisis is now. As Toby Keith said, we need a little less talk and a LOT more ACTION.

  28. Shannon B permalink
    February 28, 2009

    My entire life, I have appreciated the great outdoors, and been concerned for its well-being. Over the past year, I have been made more aware of my environmental impact and my carbon footprint. Overconsumption and the American lifestyle of always wanting the biggest, best, newest “thing” has contributed to this deterioration of the environment. Due to this concern and awareness, I have made many goals for myself in order to lessen my impact to the enviroment by driving less, recycling, looking at where my produce has come from, and using a water bottle. These small changes that I have made have been both easy to do and will help the environment, by reducing the amount of garbage I put in landfills and the carbon I produce.

  29. Marie Marsden permalink
    March 11, 2009

    What I do in my efforts to help the environment:

    recycle and reuse items – (the college does this also)

    compost waste for my organic garden

    organic garden – use no herbicides or pesticides or other questionable chemicals on my garden or in my yard

    use flourescent lightbulbs – they really do use less energy and last longer (our college uses them too)

    shut off current for electronics and other things that require the use of electricity when not in use (we do this at the college also)

  30. Jon permalink
    October 22, 2009

    If everyone stopped using Dihydrogen Monoxide (water) completely, life would VERY quickly cease to exist. Plants would die, animals, basically ALL life would die out very quickly.

  31. Ken Hightower permalink
    November 28, 2009

    I’m going to get rid of all my toxic mattresses and replace them with all natural latex mattresses. After reading their blog I can’t believe I’ve been polluting my sleeping environment for years with the out-gassing effects from my tempurpedic memory foam mattress.

  32. no name permalink
    March 25, 2010

    my news revolution to help the earth is to recycle more

  33. websitebuilder permalink
    April 14, 2010

    My new year’s resolution then was to cloth-diaper my daughter once she’s out. Now she’s 8 months old and she’s still using cloth diapers. I did it! It is stressful to be always changing nappies but I’m determined to potty train her as early as possible. And I’m helping the planet, too! If only we could all cloth-diaper our babies so we wouldn’t have plastic diapers around waiting to decompose after a hundred years.

    Amy Cameron

  34. Sven Sjostrom permalink
    September 15, 2010

    Monitor your electricity usage and find new ways to reduce your costs and your CO2 emissions. PowerCost Monitor and the Kill A Watt monitor are ideal tools. Help protect the arctic ecosystem.

  35. rabbi permalink
    September 23, 2010

    Hi, Thanks such a great information’s really like to read this topic. This is really a well written article about a great project! It’s very useful…

  36. Allan permalink
    October 12, 2010

    Clearly the answer is to reduce the population of humans on the earth. This seems to be the easiest and most effective way we can all reduce our environmental impact. Most other actions we have taken so far are rather futile. If we don’t reduce the population back to a manageable number by taking action now Gaia will do it for us in the future, but it will seem to be a different planet we will be living on by then.

  37. saniya permalink
    December 25, 2011

    Yeah thats a great concept,we have to save our environment for ourselves,actually electricity use,gas,water resources have to save and proper use,however thanks for sharing.

  38. Anonymous permalink
    January 9, 2012

    Awsome bro

  39. Jack Franklin permalink
    July 30, 2012

    I decided to reuse and recycle the waste product on new year.

  40. service123@gmail.com permalink
    August 26, 2012

    Better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.

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