I am always looking for websites that give me ideas on how to make my lifestyle more environmentally GREEN. And Treehuggers is one such site. It came to me from another wonderful website and newsletter from Wendyl Nissen the Green Goddess.
The Treehuggers site offers reports such as:
- Eco-friendly laundry: 11 Low-tech and simple methods for washing clothes more sustainably
- 10 Low-tech tactics for living more sustainably
- Hans Rosling: Debunking the myth that helping the poor is causing overpopulation (video)
The site is also full of discussions about the validity of ‘green’ claims and information on the best and worst products to use if you want to move towards a sustainable lifestyle. Now that I have found it (thanks, Wendyl) I will be returning regularly.
Fair Trade or Local Trade?
One of the issues I regularly debate in my mind is whether to by Fair Trade items from Third World countries or follow the premise of buying locally produced food or items, even if they cost more. My thinking goes like this:
Pro’s for Fair Trade –
- I am helping Third World producers by paying a fair price for their goods
- I am increasing the number of job opportunities in countries with struggling populations
- I am supporting ethically-driven aid agencies make changes in Third World countries
Pro’s for Local Trade –
- I am supporting local people earn a living
- I am reducing transport pollution miles by limiting my choices to what grows in my local area
- I am more likely to know if the food is organically grown (chemical-free)
Even in my search for herbal teas I can make from plants I grow myself has brought up these issues. If I limit my tea flavours to local plants, I reduce my ‘demand’ for teas grown in places like China and India (although neither can be said to be Third World in the classic sense of the word). But by not buying classic teas (even if they are packaged in my own country) I reduce those transport miles.
Should I be thinking globally and acting locally; or is that merely a trite saying that has little meaning in a global economy? I’d really like to hear what you think.