Until a hundred years ago as humans we had a simple, uncomplicated biological connect. It was a straightforward equation: we drew roughly 3,000 calories each of energy out of the Earth for our food and life's sustenance. Today that number per capita has grown to 1,00,000 calories. We still need only 3,000 calories each to nourish life itself. All the rest of this energy is what we extract from the Earth for everything else besides keeping ourselves alive. In some countries, like the US; this per capita number runs at over 2,00,000 calories. Some of us are concerned about this. We fret over what we could - and should - really be doing to soften this abuse of resources. Little things fox us in the welter of things that we get to read. What is sustainable development? How can it be started at our homes? Beyond the ceremonial planting of green and getting people to run marathons of various lengths in support of the environment, is there more that we can add to the abstract value of 'sustainability'? What are the little things we can do in our day-to-day lives, to reduce demand for things that people make and market? Of course, we know that it helps to avoid a plastic bag when you can use a newspaper bag, or a brown bag, or even a jute bag which you can use for many more years unlike a plastic bag which you throw away in less than a week or after a few uses. However, there's actually quite a bit more that you and I can do, without compromise on comfort, with very little as cost incurred, with financial savings that you can gain on energy and water use, and with solutions that are very feasible and within your reach. It is possible to understand our ecological footprint and its disastrous consequences, not merely in terms of our own behaviour as consumers, but really in terms of the impact on the environment we make.
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