An experiment in conscious living.


Commitment #44

“I will not use Styrofoam.”

People the world over are making a stand against the way Styrofoam has taken over the take-out experience and here in Hawai`i we are fortunate to have professional help. I guess with the greatest percentage of residents who order takeout food,  (yep, Hawai`i is number one) we need it.

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Commitment #43

“I will reuse my plastic poke containers.”

If you’re a regular visitor to TheEcoBoss blogspot, you will remember “Poke-Poi Fridays.” This is the one day each week I sit with my two co-workers, Kuha`o and Haku, to enjoy a locally-sourced meal. While Kuha`o always brings the poi, made fresh from Waipi`o kalo and delivered to Hilo every Friday morning, Haku and I take turns getting the poke. The last time I went to Suisan Market, I asked the man behind the counter if he would refill plastic containers from a previous purchase. Sometimes I pity those who have to deal with my zero-waste obsession and other times I feel like I’m helping more than hurting. Either way, once he understood that I was NOT asking him to give another customer my used containers, he agreed, making this commitment an easy one to keep.

Sometimes you just have to get up the courage to ask.

Join me in making this lifestyle commitment at Kanu Hawai`i.

Commitment #42

“I will repair old shoes before buying new ones.”

Even though fashion items are one of the few things that can be made with all-natural materials. . . yes, it is possible to buy pure rubber soles. . . adding anything to the landfill that has any use to it goes against my principles.  While I won’t be making it to the 106th Annual Convention of the Shoe Service Industry of America in Oklahoma, I did use their database to find the only Hawai`i Island repair shop out of the 17 listed for our state. Modern Shoe Repair is located on 1289 Kilauea Ave Ste A in Hilo. Another bit of random information I dug up about the company and found amusing: “Current estimates show this company has an annual revenue of $45,000 and employs a staff of approximately 1.”

Join me in making this lifestyle commitment at Kanu Hawai`i.

Commitment #41

“I will pick up litter when I see it.”

Litter really does bug me. Sometimes litter is a simple mistake — someone didn’t secure the lid on the trash can in the back of their truck —but more often it’s a result of uncaring. The saying “aloha `aina” comes to mind. It is my belief that even if I didn’t drop it, that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t pick it up. I show my respect by taking responsibility and demonstrating my desire to keep Hawai`i beautiful, I hope to inspire others to do the same.

Join me in making this lifestyle commitment at Kanu Hawai`i.

Commitment #40

“I will buy in bulk.”

We all know there can be tremendous savings in money when purchasing products in bulk; what you may not be thinking about as you make that bulk buy is your savings in packaging materials. Buying a liter-sized bottle of shampoo, for example, lessens demand for plastic as well as the energy it takes to make those extra bottles and ship them to you.

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Commitment #39

“I will (get my brother to) build a solar cooker.”

Much like a traditional slow cooker, you can load up a solar cooker and forget about it until it’s time to eat. The only really noticeable difference is the heat source. Why not take advantage of the solar energy beating down on us all day? It seems even more ridiculous to let that free energy go to waste once you see how easy it is to build one of these cookers out of everyday materials.

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Commitment #38

“I will not let the water run while washing dishes.”

During a typical dishwashing session I gather the dishes around the sink, turn the faucet on and proceed to first wash, then rinse one dish at a time — allowing the water to run throughout the process. It is still unclear to me where I picked up such a wasteful habit. . . all the more mysterious since I never let the water run while I brush my teeth. In any case, I’ve been meaning to reprogram myself to be a more conservative dishwasher.

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