The Green Year devotes a page to every day of the year. Each page details a green change you can make — buy beer on tap, switch to recycled toilet paper, and the like — with a “Done” bubble up top you can fill in once you finish the task — or “an alternative to this idea that works better for me is” box at the bottom you can scribble in your excuse for wimping out on the task.
Most of the 365 tips are simple, easy to do tasks — though once in a while, you get a huge project like “install a drip irrigation system” that’s just not a one-day job. But since many of the tips are specific to homeowners, pet owners, kid caretakers, religious holiday observers and car-dependent people, apartment dwelling atheists free of kid, pet, or car-related worries will have many free days to devote to the bigger tips.
While each day’s tip does try to give some resources to get you started, many of tips are suggestions for further research — “Research eco-friendly paint,” or “Research green dry cleaners,” for example — which could be stressful for people who aren’t research savvy. Other tips just seem incomplete. A Feb. 13 tip to “order eco-friendly flowers for your Valentine,” for example, simply recommends organic roses without mention of local, fair trade, or VeriFlora certified flower options — much less where to find these eco-friendly flowers.
Other tips are well-intentioned but under-researched. A July 8 tip advises readers to “Slather on organic sunscreen,” never mind that the active ingredients that make sunscreens work can’t be organic certified! The Green Year’s advice is to opt for “organic” and “biodegradable” sunscreens, when really, what you should be looking for are sunscreens that have active ingredients known to be effective and safe.
Then there are the repetitive tips. People who followed the April 26 advice to “set up a worm compost bin,” for example, have no need to take the July 6 tip to “start a compost pile in your backyard.”
Still, out of 365 ideas, most people still will get many new green doable ideas to incorporate into their lifestyle. And if you’re thinking about going green and keeping track of your progress, The Green Year could make great fodder for a daily blog post.