Monday, August 18, 2008

Easy Eco Mondays-Take a break from work, not from eco consciousness

August is prime holiday time – anyone have some great trips planned? I was away last week, but with work. I noticed how my ecological footprint rose when I was out of my regular routine. So how would we minimize the traveling footprint? I am not suggesting to not fly, which in itself is a great option, but sometimes not feasible and not Easy Eco! I thought I would make a green packing list – to include some things that might help us maintain the eco savvy habits we have at home.

Easy Eco Travel Items:
  • Travel Mug
  • Water Bottle
  • Tupperware
  • Tape
  • Small bottles
  • Compact Cloth Bags
  • Packing list

Water Bottle. It’s cheaper than buying a bottled water (unless the water in your location is not potable – but even then you can use iodine drops) and will remind you to keep hydrated during the day.

Travel Mug. We diligently take our mugs to work everyday, wash them out, take them home, put them away, and then do it all again the next day. But when it comes to traveling, we opt for the paper cup. Why not take that Travel mug with us when we travel and use it! In Korea, you can’t get a paper cup in many fast food/take out restaurants (see here). Hopefully this will reduce our 14.4 billion disposable cups used annually.

Tupperware – Okay this one people are going to laugh at, but when I go to a restaurant, there are many of times where I want some of my meal wrapped up. Why not just supply your own Tupperware and save all that packaging?

Tape: No matter how I pack it, my shampoo, or conditioner, or cream, or body wash manages to leak. I have them in Ziplock bags so I am safe that way, but it always seems like such a waste. I find it mainly happens with bottles that have a pop top. A little piece of tape over the pop top saves precious mL of shampoo being wasted every trip!

Small bottles – Conversely, find small bottles that have not leaked on you. You can find some at MEC if you want to buy new, or else you reuse some that travel size container you bought last time you forgot your shampoo. Transfer your shampoo, conditioner, body wash into these smaller bottles to avoid leaking, and reduce how many times you buy those travel size containers. Bonus: With the decreasing baggage weight limit these will help to keep your bag under that pesky 50kg!

Cloth bags: Who doesn’t shop while traveling? Plastic bags are bad no matter where you get them from. And we are less likely to reuse them while traveling than at home!

Packing list: Not to remind you what to bring (although one of those is also handy), write down everything you have brought with you. It only take a few extra minutes as you pack, and it will help you to remember to bring everything home with you…

So that is all I can think of… anyone else have any great eco travel ideas?

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