Lenten Carbon "Fast" 2017
Do the 4 R's: Reduce, Reuse, Repurpose, and Recycle. Visit http://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/green-science/recycling1.htm for more information on recycling.
Is a composting for you? Consider starting a compost bin. You can put the nutrients from food waste back into the soil with a composting. Your local nursery or hardware store would have tips on the best way to do this in your area. To get started visit: http://www.clemson.edu/extension/hgic/plants/other/compost_mulch/ .
Protect our waterways by learning about proper disposal of prescription drugs. Talk to your pharmacist. The Richland County Sheriff's Dept. also has a medication disposal program, visit http://www.rcsd.net, click on "Programs and Services", and then on "Operation Take Back Medications" to find out their procedures and places for drug disposal.
Do you know where you can get a locally grown food? Look to purchase locally grown food today. Plan to walk to a farmer's market this weekend, or consider joining a community supported agriculture (CSA) group to receive fresh, local produce each wee. Want to find a farmer's market in Columbia? Visit http://nfmd.org/sc/columbia/.
Is your home set up for easy recycling? Are you recycling everything you can? Research what items your city or county allows for curbside recycling. Place an item that can be recycled, but that you usually don't, into your recycling bin. Need information on what can be recycled in Richland County? Visit http://www.richlandonline.com/Government/Departments/SolidWasteRecycling.aspx. There is also an app that you can put on your phone for Richland County Recycling.
Would a motion sensor switch make sense for your home lighting?
Turn off lights you're not using. Shut off lights as you leave a room. You can put reminders on your switch plates, or install motion sensors that turn off lights automatically. Visit http://www.homelightingtips.org/light-control-systems/motion-sensor-light-switch/ for home lighting tips.
Save water in the bathroom - check your toilet for leaks and worn out parts. The bathroom use on average 40% of a household's water consumption.
Celebrate your "Fast" with millions - participate in Earth Hour! Mark your calendar for March 25th. At 8:30 pm switch off all your lights for 1 hour to commit to global climate action and be more mindful of energy use. Visit www.earthhour.org for more information.
Use the SJN Herb garden at the school or grow your own herbs to cook with. You can start with a few simple plants like basil, coriander and rosemary. As you plan your garden, choose native perennials that require less water. Visit http://acs.edu.au/Info/Hobby/Home-Gardening/Go-Natural.aspx to help you with your gardening.
Put out bird food. Enjoy the beauty of the birds and other creatures on God's earth. Attracting birds and wildlife to your yard will make you mindful of the living creatures that share our environment. Make your yard an animal habitat. Visit the National Wildlife Federation at, www.nwf.org to learn about making your yard an animal habitat.
Is alternative energy for you?
Support clean energy. Do local research and see if switching to renewable energy is feasible for you.
Aim for Zero Food Waste!
Aim for zero waste. Look at your food this week, what are you wasting? Minimize your food waste. Plan your meals ahead this week and shop with a shopping list to avoid buying extras. By planning your meals everything you buy will be eaten.
Tuesday, March 7th
Have a free home energy assessment.
Call your utility to schedule a free home energy assessment and get free upgrades.
Monday, March 6th
Reduce the number of lights you use in your house.
Each Friday during Lent either remove one light bulb from your home or work space, or tape over the light switch and live without its light. Or replace regular lightbulbs with energy-efficient bulbs. This will decrease your energy use and act as a reminder of your carbon fast commitment during Lent
Sunday, March 5th
Save water in the bathroom - take shorter showers.
Cut down your shower time. Try and keep your showers to between 3-4 minutes. The bathroom and toilet use on average 40% of a household's water consumption. Find out more at http://www.savewater.com/au
Saturday, March 4th
How committed will you be this Lenten season to being a good steward of the earth?
Start your Lenten journey by thinking about what you currently do as part of your stewardship and what commitments you'll make this Lent to do more.
For ways to help you meet your goals, visit: http://paidtoexist.com/go-all-out/
Friday, March 3rd
Turn off the water while brushing your teeth to save 50+ gallons of water/week. Only a small percentage of the world's water is potable/clean/fresh. Visit www.wateruseitwisely.com for 100 ways to save water.
Thursday, March 2nd
Commit to Friday Fish Meals: Buy fish from sustainable stock. Attend a fish fry at a local church. In simple terms, a particular seafood is sustainable if it comes from a fishery with practices that can be maintained indefinitely without reducing the target species' ability to maintain its population and without adversely impacting on other species within the ecosystem by removing their food source, accidentally killing them, or damaging their physical environment.
One tool to check, by breed, for sustainability: www.seafoodwatch.org
Look for a fish fry/Lenten Meal: SJN has a Lenten Meal on Fridays at 7:15 pm after the Way of the Cross at 6:30 pm in the Church. Visit Transfiguration Church's website at www.transfigurationsc.org and the Living Springs Lutheran Church website, livingspringscolumbia.org to see other Lenten Meals/Fish Fry opportunities.
Lent is a time to repent, sacrifice, and listen for God. This Lenten season the SJN Parish Health Ministries would like you to join us in a Lenten Carbon "Fast." Every day for the next 40 days we will post an idea for you to try, to lessen your carbon "footprint," be a better steward of the earth, and/or reflect on how your daily choices impact everyone and everything.
This Lenten Carbon "Fast" Calendar information is from the Interfaith Power & Light, www.gwlpl.org; the Virginia Interfaith Power & Light (IPL) www.vaipl.org; Michigan IPL; Washington IPL; CLRI.org; and www.greenanglicans.org.