How it all began and what comes next...
Welcome to my spanking new website. For anyone that is new to ‘365 Eco-Friendly Decisions’, I thought I’d give you some background as to who I am and how it all began. My name is Sue, I live in the UK with my husband and two lovely young sons. I’m half Italian, I play golf, I enjoy cooking, and of late I’ve become a blogger about all things environmental. I had a pre-kids career in IT project management, where I worked for several large global organisations. Once the boys came along, I spent the best part of a decade sharing my time between taking care of the them and working part time running my own small soft furnishings business. In short I’ve been blessed with a fairly easy, yet eclectic, cruise into my 40s.
Towards the end of 2018, I started to read more and more about the environmental crisis. Everything from plastic pollution, to the extinction crisis and of course Climate Change. My real call to action was the IPCC report released at the end of 2018; the one that gave us that scary, looming 12 years to avert total climate breakdown. I felt an overwhelming need to take action, to play my part in the solution. In short I couldn’t stand back and carry on with business as usual when the future for my children and the following generations looked so bleak. So (slightly hungover) on January 1st 2019, I decided to dedicate my good intentions to doing my bit for the planet and write about it. Here is my very first post:
’So it’s January of 2019 and like every year an opportunity to take stock of the changes we’d like to make in the coming months. Sure I’ve decided to get fit, eat healthier, sleep more and all that jazz, but over the last couple of days I’ve been taking stock of what I really need to change the most this year.
2019 is already guaranteed to be a whirlwind of uncertainty, and while the people in charge bicker amongst themselves about it, there is little talk of anything else. I was horrified to read the UN report on climate change at the end of last year and even more horrified that it was publicised so little. In short it shows that we have as few as 12 years to drastically reduce global carbon emissions before the climate is irreversibly damaged. 12 years!! I will only be 54 and my boys 21 and 17. They will have their whole adult lives ahead of them and it is unforgivable that no-one is focussing on what really matters for their future. Seriously isn’t all this chat about Global trade relations and borders completely futile if the globe itself may be fried beyond repair in little more than a decade?
So while the powers-that-be are fussing over all that, maybe the most important thing I can change this year is focussing on being more environmentally aware in everyday life. I believe in the power of the people and in this age even more so in the power of the consumer. Surely if the little people start to make environmentally focussed changes then those who truly have the power to make a difference, through policy, legislation and commmerce, eventually will notice. And if they don’t, I can at least look my children in the eye as they walk into their fried-planet future and honestly tell them that I was paying attention, that I did care and that I tried to do my bit.
So here is my resolution for 2019, I am going to make AT LEAST one environmentally-friendLIER decision a day, and document it here. And I’m talking little bitty decisions. I’m not aiming for eco-friendly perfection. We are not going to up sticks to a bio-fuelled cabin, commute on scooters and survive on home grown veg and knitted yoghurt. I just want us to pay attention to how much we consume across all areas our family life, how it is produced and ultimately how much of it is eventually wasted.
I plan to keep it non-preachy, light-hearted and not all about plastic.
I’m not really expecting anyone to follow my 365 decisions, but documenting them here makes me accountable. But it would be nice to know someone is reading and even nicer if you wanted to join in by giving me feedback and ideas 😀.’
And you know what? I only went and blooming did it! I made 365 eco-friendly decisions and blogged every single day for a year. I published everything on Facebook (www.facebook.com/365ecodecisions) and by the end of the year around 5,000 people were following along - some of my posts have been read tens of thousands of times. Bonkers. It has been quite the journey and every aspect of our family life has had an overhaul. We are not perfect, but the biggest lesson I have learned along the way is that we don't need to be. It’s a process that has led me to deciding to close down my sewing business and to dedicate my time to environmental activism - I have zero interest in personally profiteering from the work I do. The reward comes from inspiring others to make their own small changes and being part of a movement for good.
Moving forward, this site will be my main communication channel. It’s where I will reflect on our transformational year, share my thoughts on green issues and share news (both good and bad). So please stick around. My aim is to continue to talk frankly, but in a light-hearted, balanced, accessible and inclusive way.