Week Five: Waste

I have to confess, I am flagging a bit this week.

We started waste week on Friday, and it’s not too taxing so far but I think I am generally feeling a little ‘7’ fatigue. Non-‘7’ life keeps getting busier and more demanding (did I mention it’s birthday month?) and it’s a battle to keep finding the head space a project like this requires.  I’m not known to be a completer-finisher; I’m all about the first flush of enthusiasm so it’s a familiar wall I find myself hitting. But, I’m also a stubborn wee fecker and, dammit, a legalist to boot. So deep breaths, and let’s tally-ho for week 5…

This is our most straightforwardly ‘green’ week, as we take seriously our commitment to creation care. What we do intentionally or indirectly to the physical world matters and it is as much a spiritual issue as an environmental one. Wendell Berry says,

‘The ecological teaching of the bible is simply inescapable: God made the world because He wanted it made. He thinks the world is good, and He loves it. It is His world; He has never relinquished title to it. And He has never revoked the conditions, bearing on His gift to us of the use of it, that obliges us to take excellent care of it. If God loves the world, then how might any person of faith be excused for not loving it or justified in destroying it?’

 A great place to start is to simply consume less. Of everything. But we will be specifically thinking about our most fragile resources – fossil fuels. We will also be trying to make better use of our waste and find ways to decrease our land-fill contribution.

 Rachel and I will be embracing 7 habits for a greener life this week. Which are:

  • Gardening: preparing our gardens for and planting our gardens with foodstuffs.
  • Composting and recycling. Most of us already do this but it easy to get lazy so we will really be trying to ramp this up this week
  • A tumble drier fast for the week (happy days, think we’ll also let the washing machine have a wee rest too)
  • One car-free day
  • A light-bulb survey- replacing with energy efficient
  • A crackdown on convenience consumables eg Kitchen roll, baby wipes, sandwich/freezer bags, foil, cotton wool. Toilet roll is happily exempt.
  • Buying local products to save on transportation fuel

Today has been designanted car-free, so we left the car at home this morning and walked to church. This would deserve a pat on the back were it not for the shameful truth that we drive to church every sunday and it is literally less than half a mile away. While we Mullans may feel smug about our recycling/composting/gardening efforts we are pretty disastrous when it comes to using our car. We are North Coast wusses and dive into our car at the slighest skiff of rain or breeze. Billy Connolly may say that there is no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong kind of clothing, but he has never tried to wrestle himself and 3 small children into wet gear. A vertible tangle of polymide. So we’ll be taking note of how necessary our car journeys are. One piece of particularly bad planning means that no-car-day coincides with very bare cupboards and a nappy crisis, so we are off on a family expedition to asda on scooters and double buggies to do the weekly shop. Father, forgive us for our sunday trading and please don’t let it rain….

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