|Feel guilty yet?|
Those images are one reason I began upcycling. It seemed like a good way to practice and encourage recycling, lessen waste, and ultimately help those polar bears.
But it isn't that simple.
It turns out my oh-so-green business burns up quite a bit of fossil fuel. Here's how:
- I drive to find my materials. In my non-hybrid Honda. The closest thrift store is less than 2 miles away, but often I travel 4 miles or more to visit a better one. And to find my stash of Drew books, I have to go to a used-book store, 2 towns over.
- I include recycled paper and plastic to pack my items for shipping whenever I can, but I still buy rolls and rolls of new clear tape and bubble wrap. Those, I believe, start life as petroleum.
- Thanks to Etsy's global audience, I ship my upcycled products far and wide. I love bragging about my customers in Finland or Israel. But then I remember that my tiny packages travel in a large, gas-guzzling airplane over thousands of miles. Possibly right over those polar bears they're killing.
|Up up and away with my beautiful carbon footprint|
- I confess I've even ordered old books online, just to rip them apart. So first they fly to me, then they fly away. But how else can I find the Trixie Belden titles my customers demand?
|Don't blame me. I'm saving a lamb here.|
|Even polar bears would love this.|
|That's me on the far right.|
One environmentally aware youngster I know sent me this photo. He's wearing a shirt that says "I wish global warming was just a bad dream." And of course, there's a cute polar bear.