Monday, January 05, 2009

Simple Living: A Review

The turn of the year is always time for review, so while out walking with the better half and the boy we had a little review of how this whole simpler living experiment was working out. It's a funny thing because lots of things we do are now just background everything on this list from a post on this back in May. It doesn't feel like we're doing much about it all really because it's become normal.

I guess the biggest decision was incredibly mundane but has a massive impact. I am of course talking about nappies. Here are some horrible facts about disposable nappies:
  • 8 million are used in the UK every day, 7.5 million end up in landfill
  • That's 3 billion a year and 1 million tonnes
  • 500 years later they'll still be where we buried them
  • It costs the taxpayer £40 million a year to get rid of them
Plus the average baby uses about 5000 of them and we'll save about £1000. But its a good example of the decisions you make. By choosing reusable nappies we trade up in water use - for some this is a bad thing, but we make a massive saving in waste and in money. We judged this to be worth it. It just isn't that difficult a decision really.

We want to do better with where we buy our food this year, we're still a bit too reliant on Tesco for our liking and would prefer more local solutions. Anyway, I'm up for suggestions as to what we can do to move this alongs?


Tim Simmonds on 5 January 2009 at 12:57 said...

An allotment?

we have a veg patch in our garden, which has provided us with a few carrots, tons of rhubarb, a few knackered cabage and broccoli (sp?).

dmk on 5 January 2009 at 15:06 said...

We used nature boy/girl nappies, which are stocked in big Tescos (ASDA seem resistant), Boots and various other place. Recycled nappies, which themselves will compost down. They also do biodegradable nappy bags and wipes, so that everything you use will eventually rot down.

We had a go with washable nappies at the start and it was such a colossal effort keeping the system going (and I dread to think how much water, heating and detergent it used), that we switched to the eco nappies instead. A nappy laundry service is the other way to stick with washables, but it depends whether there's one up and running in your area.

And to think I came here to think about theology.....

Phil on 5 January 2009 at 18:09 said...

Thanks for the comments - probably not going to manage an allotment, not yet keen enough/organised enough to make the time. But we do want to do better with the little raised veg bed we've got.

As for nappies - (think of it as applied theology) thanks for the tips, we use disposable when we're out somewhere and washable are too inconvenient, so degradable ones would be good. And yes the system is a constant thing, fortunately for me my wife is brilliant at this while I would be rubbish.

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