Is it ok to lie in this case?

A guest in the building where I work asked if I knew where coffee cups were.  I did, and was headed that direction. I lead her to a cabinet of 30 or so coffee mugs, many of which had been donated to us to help us cut down on waste.

When she saw them, she asked if I had any styrofoam cups. I said that I did, but I’d rather she use one of these, and I would be happy to wash it afterwards.  I explained that was why we had these.

She stood there for a moment, said she didn’t have a preference,  then asked again if I had styofoam.  I again said I did, and again suggested a reusable cup. Again I offered to wash it afterwards.

She finally said she would really rather have a styrofoam cup.

Would it have been ok, do you think, to deny having styrofoam for her to use a reusable coffee mug?

Is it ok to lie in this case?

Bright idea?

A recent Economist carried a piece about how maybe the increasing efficiency of light bulbs is not going to lead toward a reduction of electricity needed/produced.

It is worth remembering that when gas lights replaced candles and oil lamps in the 19th century, some newspapers reported that they were “glaring” and “dazzling white”. In fact, a gas jet of the time gave off about as much light as a 25 watt incandescent bulb does today. To modern eyes, that is well on the dim side.

Do you think you will be wanting brighter lighting in your house/office/church/store if five times the lighting takes half the electricity?

Bright idea?

Go Green, Save Green

“Going green” isn’t always a money-saver.  Buying food that is sustain-ably produced can be costly. buying a new, more fuel-efficient car is expensive (and only arguably a greener option than maintaining a paid-for car you already have).

One way that Rachel and I have chosen to do a part to be better stewards of the earth is to use reusable cotton diapers.  The up-front cost is much higher than disposable diapers, but because we registered for them we received some as gifts.  As it stands now, Eliza is 3 months old tomorrow, and we spent on diapers total what disposables would have cost for this first 3 months.

And we have all the diapers she will ever need. And we have these diapers for a younger brother or sister to use.

We use more water washing them weekly than we would use on disposables, but we put almost nothing in the landfill, and water is, where we live, a renewable resource.

Interesting point-when I mention to young people that we have made this choice, many of them have asked why we don’t use “normal” diapers.  Disposable diapers are now “normal.”

We use Gro Baby and Bum Genius brands of reusable diapers, and they are incredibly easy to use.

No, I don’t leave all diaper duty to Rachel.

Go Green, Save Green


I’ve had conversations with some of you about being “green.”  For me it is primarily a matter of stewardship. As a new blog, EvanEco puts it, “The world isn’t ours to mess up.-Ps 24.1)  I am trying to move in the direction of living on this planet God has given us in ways that all 6-point-however many billion people could all live.

Could our planet sustain everyone daily using as much fresh water as I do? would it be possible, and economically feasible, to generate enough electricity as  6 billion people would need, if all consumed electricity at the rate I do?

I’m thrilled about a step that Texas State University has taken to help its students become more aware of sustainability issues. Robert George wrote a story for the Austin American Statesman.  TSU has installed 30 elliptical trainers for student workouts that are designed to generate power and put it back into the power grid.

Great as this is, a 30 minute workout generates about enough electricity to light a bulb for 2 hours.

Would you be willing to work out enough to leave your lights on?


Sustainable Argument

I’ve blogged several times about water conservation and usage. (Here, here, here, and here, for a few)

Word gets around (apparently) because someone asked me recently if I thought water down the drain was gone for good and not reusable.

Of course not, I replied.

Then why did I care how much water I used?

Here’s the best argument I have for why we (generally) ought to learn to use less water.

Even during this time of economic downturn, the world is developing at a pretty good clip.  Though more than a billion people still live on less than $2 a day, and a huge number do not have easy access to safe water, these numbers are decreasing.

I believe these numbers can, and should, continue to decrease, and that this doesn’t mean (necessarily) that the wealthy have to get less wealthy.

It does mean, however, that more of us will have to share a finite amount of fresh water.

If all 6 billion people on the planet had access to fresh water, would there be enough for all of them to use the same amount per day as you and I do?  I don’t think so.

If those of us who have plenty, and access to more wter than we could possibly need, would take the time to intentionally cut back on our waste, the finite amout of water we have would go farther as more and more people continue to gain reasonable access to it.

Sustainable Argument

A Worthwhile Cause?

Not every cause promises to change one’s life.  If I jump on board with this one, mine would surely be very different. I read this morning, on a General Board of Church and Society note, about Killer Coke.

I’ve blogged about my love of Diet Coke before.  In fact, I found a post about the stuff from August 2005 – was I really blogging back then?  Giving up Diet Coke in supprot of this cause would be a drastic change for me.

dietcokeI am going to read more about the protest, and I’ll let you know.

A Worthwhile Cause?