Kelly Mead | |

Earth Day, April 22, 2008, is less then a month away and I though t this would be the perfect time to ask: What have you done in the past year to improve your and our environment?

This is more of a thinking exercise then to put anyone on the spot. I try to use Earth Day as my mark to see how I have changed my habits and living to be healthier both for my family and I and for the Earth as a whole. I will be writing a more in depth article on April 22 and hope that is you have a blog you will join with me about how I did change the world for good this past year.

I have to say that this year has been pretty productive as I completed changing over all my light bulbs (I only changed them after the old ones stopped working), insulated exposed pipe and duct work, finished changing my cleaning supplies over to non-toxic/organic, and started this site to help convert and inform others of the benefits of going green and getting of the grid. I still need to plant my gardens, a herb, vegetable, and a berry, but they have been cleared and just need tiling and the compost added.

My plans for the upcoming year is to install a solar water heater and if I’m really lucky and on the ball solar panels. Also I intended to be more involved in getting others to understand the benefits of being self-sufficient in today’s world. I have to admit that I don’t take the pushy approach but the education one. This seems to work the best for me.

Did I ever mention that my husband wasn’t to thrilled about the idea of taking our family off the grid? All he saw in the beginning was the expense and the extra work it would require to do it. Now though after being pulled along he is almost as excited as I am. He is actually researching on his own and even helping with the home improvements (not one of my husbands loves) which just shows that once people are shown the benefits they don’t just jump on the train but actually drive it.

Speaking of information and change I stumbled on a story about a Stanford law professor trying to change the way Congress works. A site called Change Congress is trying to take wiki approach to congress to make it more transparent and keep track of our politicians and their pledges. It looks to be in the very early stages but if we all get behind it that could change very quickly. I have joined their emailing list and hope to hear good things from them soon. Along with that Breathing Earth made quite an impact. It shows carbon dioxide emission level of every country in a real time simulation.

Buy our book - OFF THE GRID - a tour of American off-grid places and people written by Nick Rosen, editor of the off-grid.net web site

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