On October 18th, speakers Utah Valley Earth Forum, partnering with Utah Interfaith Power and Light, taught attendees how to lessen their carbon footprint.
Interfaith Power and Light has 38 chapters across the U.S. motivating others to look at moral and spiritual factors in environmentalism. Lauryn De Grado, the night’s presenter with Interfaith Power and Light, introduced The Low Carbon Diet, a new program designed to educate about energy conservation, energy inefficiency and renewable energy. The Low Carbon Diet, is a 30 day regimen built to shed 5,000 lbs of carbon emissions.
“This program is starting to get momentum,” De Grado said. “We’re hoping from this, people will take what they learn to their neighborhoods, and from there to their schools and it will just sort of flower out from there.”
The accompanying booklet is split into three sections: a lifestyle action plan, a household systems action plan and a plan empowering others to lessen their emissions. The ideas range from cooking rather than eating fast food, to solar ovens and sealing air leaks in the home.
De Grado encouraged the group to look around and see what they can do and to challenge themselves in order to make a difference. She suggested turning it into a game. For instance, when the dishes need washing and the water is still getting hot, take a pitcher and fill it up to use that lukewarm water for rinsing or for watering the plants.
De Grado also presented about parkcitygreen.org, where there are online calculators to determine water consumption, waste and goals for reduction. It is a visual way for people to tangibly see the impact they are having, De Grado said.
David Staub, who began his environmental journey at the age of 15 in Detroit, shared his first experience of cleaning up the trails and rivers in Michigan.
“The little time it took us to clean up changed that whole area and it made such an impact,” Staub said. “I thought, wow I love doing this, so why not find out what else I can do environmentally to make the world a better place.”
Carol Walters, co-chair of Utah Valley Earth Forum, said the first night of the three-part workshop had relevant tips for everyone, including herself.
“I have adopted a lot of this already in my life,” Walters said. “But I know there are a few things that I haven’t even thought about.”
There are two follow-up workshops to complete the series of the Low Carbon Diet, on Nov. 1st and Nov. 15th, each at 7 p.m. in Carol Walters’ home, located at 1231 W. Camelot Drive in Provo. The workshops are free and open to the public.