HI, my name is Rachel Oscar. Next May, after my final year in college, I will be released into the real world. So long tortellini Tuesdays in the dining hall, goodbye big, fat textbooks, hello cruel, cold world?or should I say warm(ing) world?
Yes, warming. For the first time in my twenty-one years I will be out on my own and in control of some big choices. The way I choose to eat, the way I choose to commute, and the way I choose to recreate are decisions that will affect the environment in which I live. My actions can advocate sustainability and a better world.
For this reason, I took Cleveland for a test drive-well?bike ride-implementing different sustainable practices into my own, everyday life and exploring the city's sustainable organizations, co-ops, businesses and eateries. Over the course of seven weeks, I took on six different sustainability challenges. One week I attempted to eat only local foods. Another week I relied on transit and biking to get around. I assembled a rain barrel and learned many other skills. And I met with many cool people in the community who are authorities on the subject matter I tackled each week.
My challenges took me around our region and back. Along the way, I encountered many successes and some embarrassing moments, but I did it for you (and for this slowly heating planet we call Earth) in hopes that my experiences could act as a guide for those who are interested in living more sustainably but don't know where to begin. Believe me, seven weeks ago I didn't know where to start either. My advice: it can be fun, but be prepared to get a little dirty!
Check out my series, Rachel's Sustainability Challenge, to read about my weekly adventures and misadventures.