Many of the resources about sustainable living are written in a quite abstract form, in order to offer something for every reader. This doesn’t always give the depth of detail that more personal stories can provide. So in order to offer some of those richer details, and to ground some of the broader generalized advice in a real situation and authentic experience, we would like to offer the story of our family’s journey towards a more sustainable lifestyle. Think of it as an ongoing case-study. We do want to mention upfront how thankful our family is for the good fortune that we have had in access to opportunities to education, employment, and finances. We couldn’t have made it to where we are without a lot of help, and hope that we can do something to give back by helping to move society to a more sustainable trajectory.
As is described elsewhere at Sunshine Saved, we think that one of the most fruitful approaches to convincing individuals to adopt sustainable behaviors is to make them win-win situations. Asking people to make significant sacrifices for the greater good of mankind is a hard sell, but offering ways to maintain or even increase one’s well-being while also doing better for humanity and the world, that is a much more attractive path. The urgency of the problems of climate change and biodiversity loss mean that there will also have to be much stronger government regulation on emissions and land use, but we at Sunshine Saved are mostly working on a softer approach, working to help people to make changes that they want to make (we offer the “carrot” to strong regulation’s “stick”). We have adopted this path for our own journey, finding all the ways that we could make our lives more sustainable while at the same time not giving up on the amenities of modern life.
The links below are to different parts of our personal account.
- Our off-grid green home. This is what got us really started in sustainability, designing and building the home on our farm.
- The farm at Manitou Bay. We are building a small-scale farm and trying to practice regenerative forestry and agriculture.
- How much energy does my family use anyway?
- A 5 year plan to cut our greenhouse emissions in half