Do one thing

Smart Commute
Be a smart commuter. Carpool.

Happy New Year!

Did you make a resolution for 2019? Now that we’re in the second week of the year, have you kept your resolution? Let’s face it; many of us make such grand resolutions that they’re difficult to keep.

What if we made a resolution to do one thing? Since this is an environmental blog, I’m specifically thinking about one thing for the environment.

Environmental issues, such as climate change, can be so overwhelming that you might often think that your one action can’t make a difference. But you can! I even have it right in the tagline for this blog: collectively we can make a difference.

Let’s imagine that you were able to do one thing; you might be inspired to do something else. And, if you told your friends how easy it was, they might be inspired to do one thing too.

So, where to start? Here are a few tips to get the ideas rolling. Choose one or create your own plan. Then share your ideas with me using #TakeActionBurlington and/or #LiveGreenBurl.

  • Walk or cycle instead of driving.

    Bike to School Week 2016
    St Raphael Catholic School students celebrate a Bike to School Week event. Image courtesy of A. Brown.
  • Replacing a vehicle? Consider a plug-in hybrid for a primary vehicle or a fully electric vehicle for a secondary vehicle.

    Charging an EV at one of the city's charging stations.
    Charging an EV at one of the city’s charging stations.
  • Turn your engine off while you wait. The City has a bylaw for unnecessary idling with a fine of $120.

    Tom Thomson Public School Idling Awareness Campaign.
    Eco Tigers club students at Tom Thomson Public School holding up a banner as part of their Idling Awareness Campaign. Image courtesy of A. Johnson.
  • Participate in community clean up and/or green up events.

    BurlingtonGreen Youth Cleaning Up
    BurlingtonGreen youth participating in a clean-up event. Image courtesy of BurlingtonGreen.
  • Grow your own food.

    Tending to the Grow To Give Garden, where produce grown will be donated to local food banks.
    Tending to the “Grow To Give” plot at Burlington’s Central Park community garden, where all produce grown will be donated to local food banks.
  • Air dry your laundry indoors in the winter and outdoors in the summer.

    Hanging laundry to dry outdoors.
    Hanging laundry outdoors on a clothesline.
  • Plant a tree or landscape your garden using native plants.

    Arbor Day Tree Planting Event
    An Arbor Day Tree Planting Event.
  • Say no to plastic straws at the restaurant.
  • Bring your own reusable produce and grocery bags.
  • Learn how to properly drain your pool.
  • Use a programmable thermostat. Many have ‘smart’ capabilities that track when you’re home or away and adjust your home’s temperature accordingly. Or you can purchase a basic one and program it for when you’re home and away.
  • Renovating this year? Consider not just the ‘nice to have’ upgrades such as kitchens and bathrooms but also hidden items such as extra insulation which will save on heating costs. And if you’re buying new appliances, make sure they’re Energy Star labelled to save energy.

Take Action Burlington! Do one thing. Collectively we can make a difference.

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