It's that time of year again. A new year is just around the corner. I have been thinking lately about my New Year's resolutions for 2016. Yes, I am one of those people who make New Year's resolutions, and generally, I tend to stick to them. Mostly because I frame them as goals, not aspirations.
Anyway, in thinking through 2015 and looking toward 2016, I decided that I needed to include one or two goals relating to living more sustainably. I have been doing that the last few years, so this is nothing new, but if I don't include it as one of my goals for the year, then I'll lose focus.
One event that has me really looking at this area a little more is the recent decision by Progressive Waste to stop single stream recycling in Wichita Falls. This means there really isn't a good place to recycle plastics. I have heard Wal-Mart will take most plastics. I am going to check that out and if so, that will be a help. However, wouldn't it be better to reduce at the front side? So my focus for 2016 is going to be to reduce trash. We do reasonably well at this already. We were putting out 1 curbside trash bin a month because we could put most of our waste either in our own compost bins, the city's organics recycling and the single stream recycling. The amount of waste we are putting out has jumped dramatically--mostly in plastics, although there are some metal food cans. I can see that if I don't take control, the amount of trash we put out will double. That's not acceptable. That means I need to look for non-plastic packaging options and ferret out recycling options. I am going to try to can more--I can now, but not enough to make a big dent in the metal cans going in the trash. I can reuse my canning jars.
So that is focus #1.
The next item is this blog. I post fairly regularly to the Facebook page, but have been woefully lazy about this blog. However, many people who have access to this blog do not have Facebook accounts. I can always share the link from the blog to Facebook, but it would be difficult for blog readers to check Facebook posts. I plan to still do a lot of sharing of interesting articles to the Facebook page, but will do a better job of having some more detailed information about topics of interest here.
Lastly, I plan to do more gardening. This is another carryover from previous years. I have a good-sized garden for a residential lot and I have been gradually introducing permaculture. I haven't been very disciplined about it though. So I am going to finish my permaculture course on line and raise a higher percentage of my own food this year. Good exercise, better tasting food and at the same time, removing more of the environmental toxins from our family.
So those are my 3 sustainability goals for 2016. What are yours?