Thursday, October 30, 2008

Where have I been?

Sorry folks, not been online much this week.

I have something BIG planned for a couple of weeks time though... More details soon. All you need to know is it involves getting dirty and will be happening on Sunday 23rd November at 09:30hrs.

Sadly it is not my suggested mud wrestling event.

In the meantime, send me your thoughts, experiences and ideas for future challenges please. I only know so much about all this so I need YOUR help. Actually a lot of people tell me that I need help.

Oh, and as a sideline, check out for info about something else I am doing this month.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Eat a belgian!

Picture this! I have actually been MAD busy for the whole of last week and most of this one so far.

Actually today was particularly stressful as I had to delver a training course. Easy peasy I hear you say, however, it turned out that the course was booked in French... I don't speak French...

So through the few words I remember from school, some interpretive dance and mime I think the class got what they expected... A headache probably.

What I have noticed though is travelling is a real killer when you are trying to keep to these challenges, but it is doable... just.

I failed miserably on the plastic bottles though so I shall self flagellate with the carrier bags I accidentally had to use on Monday whie trying to be OH SO VERY GOOD buying organic local produce.

Now, on to the challenges. I REALLY need your suggestions. But for this week I want us to think about food miles.

I have been amazed to noticed the carbon footprint of my (often veggie) dinners. Chillis from thailand, limes from brazil and all manner of weird and wonderful places. Even fair trade food is no good as those bananas didn't walk here. Or did they? I read somewhere that some trees can walk. But it may have been in Lord of the Rings so it may or may not be true.

Anyway, this brings me to the challenge. EAT BELGIANS! Or at least as much as possible, eat their food.

When I say this, I don't mean nicking someones chips, but try to buy local produce. Organic even better...

Now I have been thinking about these challenges too. Is anyone doing them? Should we make it a monthly challenge from now on and collect experiences (please leave me comments, I get so terribly lonely when I am away from home!) or shall we try to keep it weekly for now until I am perfect and have a long life, low carbon emmission glow (BLAME GLOBAL WARMAL ON READY BREK!)

Anyway, let me know how you get on and what you think. I am back to the grindstone here. I will be forced to sit through 90 minutes of Chelsea vs Roma in a pub drinkng LOCAL beer (the water is from France so can't fail the challenge quite yet)

All the best

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Bottle up and Explode...

Gosh, is it tuesday already? Doesn't time fly when you are saving the planet*

*if saving the planets means spending the weekend in the sunshine supping far too many bottles of red wine!

Well, come on then, how are you all doing? Are any of these changes sticking yet? I'm genuinely enjoying the veggie bit and although I have had to use a couple of plastic bags, for the most part it is now second nature to take a bag out with me whenever I go shopping. Although if they have good cheap meats I always buy far too much. Sarah tries to ban me, but I can't resist a bargain. Our freezer is now full of half price kangeroos and various bits of animal all put aside for the summer barbeque that somehow never happened (all that rain... climate change? Or just Belgium???)

This week we are upping the steaks a bit! Steaks? oops, I meant stakes. This meat deprivation comes out in many forms...

Ok, so what are we going to do, well it is a simple challenge, STOP BUYING BOTTLED WATER!!! There are these shiny things in the kitchen called taps where you can get all the water you need. Of course at a later date we'll need to have a look at how we save that, but for now, here are some facts about the bottled water industry you may find surprising:

Americans consume about 29 billion water bottles a year. In order to make all these bottles, manufacturers use 17 million barrels of crude oil. That’s enough oil to keep a million cars going for twelve months.

Worldwide, 2.7 million tonnes of plastic is used every year by the bottled water industry. And not many bottles are recycled - perhaps 20% in USA, 10% in UK. The rest go to landfills or incineration ... or are just thrown away in the countryside or in the ocean.

Around a quarter of the 90 billion litres of bottled water drunk each year is consumed outside the country of origin. It is flown and shipped around the world, from France, Italy and Norway at best, from Japan and Fiji at worst, creating millions of tonnes of greenhouse gases.

Pretty amazing eh!

So good luck with the challenge. Keep me posted on how you are getting on...

All the best!

Ok: I will give one of Sarah's ecofriendly washing machine balls to the first person to recognise the song title of this post... I want the artist and the album it is on. No googling!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Challenge Ideas

Please send me your thoughts and ideas for future environmental challenges and any info you have as to why we should do them.

Also, do the survey on and let me know what your carbon footprint is like.

Veggie week - updates

Hello folks,

So how did you get on last week?

I quite enjoyed it actually, had roasted beetroot which was nice, and lost 2kgs as well. Saying that, it was great eating a mountain of sausages yesterday.

So plus points from last week:
- I actually like vegetables although avocado, swede, sweetcorn and mushrooms are horrible and should be illegal.
- Quorn is a pretty good substitute for meat and is healthy
- I lost weight

Negative points:
My own methane emmissions were definitely up...

How about you? Time to get some feedback and experiences from you all...

More soon... This week is all about water, but I am supposed to be working right now so we'll get on to that tonight (or as soon as I get bored of working again).

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Green greens...

Well hello there,

Been a while! Must admit, I haven't been busy, just being very lazy. Luckily, a lot of this environmental stuff does point to a 'Less is More' attitude, so I like to think that by sitting around in my pants watching TV most of the weekend I did my bit.

So how did you get on with last weeks challenge? After declaring war on plastic bags I haven't used one for over a month now (except that one last week which was old, full of holes and left me in so much fear for my bottle of rum and coke that I opted to drink it as quickly as possible - and recycled the bottles)

I guess with these challenges it is important to remember that by trying something we are making changes. Some of them might not stick, but I think the war on plastic has begun and I shall endeavour to keep it up...

So on to this weeks challenge, and another reason why I am late writing this... Did you know that one of the biggest problem with the enviroment is caused by the meat industry? The methane (yes, this is farting and burping) produced by cows makes the emmissions from planes seem tiny by comparison. Add to this the devastation of forests and the cost (environmental) of bringing a burger to your plate, it is a scary beast indeed.

Did I ever mention I am actually scared of cows? Really give me the heebyjeebies!!!

However, I do love eating them!

So the challenge this week is to try and cut down the meat you eat. Try to go veggie for a day (or longer if you want). Especially, try to do it when you are going out so it makes a difference (lunch in Belgium is not easy either)

I am also pretty scared of horses, but don't eat those!

Oh, and the other reason I am writing this on Tuesday was that I had a lovely chicken soup last night.

Good luck, tell me your successes, failures, veggie recipes and experiences. Feel free to send me your ideas for future challenges too!!!

Sheep can't be trusted...