Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Day 210 of our Green Year: Taking Off Shoes

Yay! We have hit seven months of the Green Year, and only five months left to go. For today, we have decided to do something very simple, and everyone else can do it too. All it involves is removing your shoes when you come into the house. Many people would not realize that this is something you can do to go green, and most think of it as something people in Japan do as a sign of respect.

Well, if you want to help the environment, it is one of the easiest things you can do. As for why it is good for the environment, here are just a few reasons:

The first reason is that when you wear your shoes from the outside, indoors, you are tracking in dirt. The more dirt you track in, the more you will have to clean your floors. The more you clean your floors, the more floor cleaner you will use. While we use vinegar, baking soda and water to clean our floors, we don't want to waste too much of it. This is especially true when we can prevent the floors from getting dirty from our shoes.

The second reason is more serious and can present worse problems than dirt in your home. The Environmental Protection Agency has found that people often bring lawn pesticides into their homes with their own shoes. This does not need to be from your own home, but simply through walking in your neighborhood. In fact, pesticides on shoes are considered to be a major source of pesticide exposure for adults and young children.

Another good way to deal with this, beyond removing your shoes when you come into the house, is to put a doormat just inside your door to store your shoes and to wipe them off on.

Going green is not always complicated, and sometimes it can be as simple as taking off your shoes and putting your feet in some nice big fuzzy slippers.