Reducing our carbon footprint

By Marisa Nillpraphan

As mothers, we know full well that our lovely little offspring generate a lot of waste; the poop and vomit variety are biodegradable, but the containment and cleanup of such things usually are not.

I know what might be going through your minds right now: “I’m so busy.” Of course you are, but reducing your carbon footprint doesn’t have to involve overhauling your lifestyle or dragging your family through a new routine.

With Earth Day fast approaching and a global political climate that makes us cringe for the future of our planet, let us take a moment to reflect on our own carbon footprint and the little things we can do to improve the outlook of our ecosystem.

  • Diapers – Besides the obvious reusable diapers (a system that takes a lot of dedication and time that not everyone has to give), we can do things like avoiding using disposable diaper trash bags and opt for reusable wet bags (there are good ones that keep in the stink) when changing nappies on the go, and using washable cloth wipes when changing nappies at home.
  • Feeding – Buying packaged food is often unavoidable (fruit squishies/quetschbeutel make up an embarrassingly large percentage of my trash contents), but every once in a while when you have time, consider using reusable squishy pouches. You don’t even have to cook and puree your own fruit. Just buy a big jar of applesauce and fill the pouches. It will save money and a lot of plastic waste.
  • Family meals – My husband is a dedicated carnivore and often requires meat or an animal product at every meal. I, on the other hand, can give up meat cold-turkey (see what I did there), but really like dairy and eggs. The fact is that intensive animal farming has huge environmental impacts from deforestation to ground water pollution, not to mention the energy and resources that go into growing feed for our food. Fine, we should all be vegans; however, that is not a choice my husband will likely make. Ever. But we can compromise a little here and there like introducing meatless Monday to family meal plans, or substituting almond/soy/rice milk for cow/goat milk a few times a week.

So there you have it, a handful of things we can do to reduce our carbon footprint. I hope you are inspired to implement one or two of these suggestions, maybe more.

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