Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Day Ninety-Three: Carbon Neutral?

Well, I think a giant BP sized slap on the wrist is in order for me. I have not blogged for nigh on six weeks. Shame on me. This project, to go 'carbon neutral', was always going to be a struggle. I knew that from day one. I was under no illusion that I could make a few small changes and I would suddenly become some beacon of eco-wonder. It's testament, I think, to how difficult this whole subject is.

I've continued to behave in as 'eco friendy' a way as possible. I've been recycling, composting, growing my own veg and have made a conceited effort to make those little, arguably easy, changes that we can all make. What does it all add up to? A slight underwhelming feeling, to be honest. We do like to see results, don't we?

I've come to the realisation that's it's all about context. Had I started this journey as an abysmal planet hating 'throw away' kind of guy, there may have been more of a dramatic change. I am, of course, not that kind of person. I harbour the same sort of middle class guilt that I think many of us share - I recoil at my neighbours who still do not recycle, at people who continue to buy unethical produce from the supermarket - but then who am I to judge? So I think it's time this project changed it's destination. A modest, humble acceptance that I am not going to become carbon neutral, but that I can continue to strive to improve my lifestyle within certain, boring, constraints.

An improved understanding and awareness of the world around me has opened my eyes to issues I was previously blind to, so I can only hope for a slow but definite upward trajectory to something resembling an environmentally 'sound' lifestyle. As and when I stumble across groundbreaking information I will continue to share and discuss them here on this blog, but I want to avoid the preachy 'do this, do that' mentality and focus more on the reality of the environmental state we're living in, and how the big stories and events around the globe affect us on a smaller, more personal level. I promise, therefore, that the next blog should be day ninety-five, or thereabouts, and not in another six weeks.

By the way, my compost is looking wonderful.

- James
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