EPPC Column: Doin’ it green for Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is about more than football and food comas. It’s also about giving thanks — and what better way to thank the planet than to do it green for Thanksgiving?

If you’re travelling by car to get home, you can carpool with friends or sign up with zimride.com to ride share. If you live nearby, or if you don’t mind a long ride, you can take the train (with free Wi-Fi!). A train ride down the coast is cheaper than a flight, and the train has a smaller carbon footprint. However, if you go with the plane option, be sure to take Yolobus route 42A or the Unitrans shuttle, which can take you from the MU to the Sacramento Airport on Wednesday hourly from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Once you’re home and shopping for food, aim for local, seasonal and organic when possible. You don’t have to give up your turkey for tofurkey, but the bird makes up 60 percent of a typical holiday meal’s 44-pound carbon footprint.

Whatever you choose to make, be mindful of how much food you actually need. If there is extra food, embrace the leftovers! Leftovers are great for dinners and lunches (and breakfasts) and food can be frozen or sent home with guests.

When you sit down at the table, sit down to real dishes and cutlery.  Paper and plastic, used for convenience and alleged cheapness, are worse for the environment, since the materials must be salvaged, processed, shipped and then (usually) placed in a landfill. It’s better to use the real deal and then wash them in an efficient dishwasher or by hand.

Enjoy the food, the good company and time off from school, but don’t forget to give thanks to the environment and do it green.

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