Wild Horse Wind Farm in Kittitas County, Washington
Photo by Erica Simek

We are all key players in ensuring a sustainable region

At Forterra we are changing the game of ensuring a sustainable region. To this end, Forterra has helped complete over forty conservation projects across the region. These projects have protected 234,883 acres from development and sprawl. While these are incredible achievements, land conservation is only one play in the game to create vibrant, healthy, livable places for our communities to flourish. Just like our conservation projects are made possible by many small donations that add up to save entire landscapes, the aggregate of the small moves we each make every day can add up to dramatic changes.

Take energy use in your home. Large, constantly running appliances such as the washer-dryer and the fridge consume the largest amount of energy in your home, but can often be made more efficient by inexpensive upgrades, such as replacing the seal on the refrigerator door. Smaller appliances consume less energy, but this energy can be mitigated often by simply unplugging them when not in use, stopping the low, continuous energy draw that most plugged in appliances pull.

By deciding to shop smart we can collectively cause great change. Purchasing toxin-free personal care products, cosmetics, and cleaning products we protect local waterways from carcinogens and chemicals that can be harmful to fish and other wildlife. The David Suzuki Foundation has a list of common household toxins that you can try to avoid. You can also check the products you already have using the Environmental Working Group app.

Don’t just recycle, reduce. Obviously, recycling is a better choice than throwing things away, but it still takes considerable amounts of energy to recycle your paper or plastic waste. Instead, avoid buying products with a lot of packaging and explore the bulk section at your local grocery with your own reusable containers. When packaging is unavoidable, get creative with ways that you can reuse, repurpose or upcycle it. Pinterest is a treasure trove of ways that you can upcycle and re use everything from old kitchen appliances to soda cans.

My challenge to you, each and every Forterran, is to be a game changer today. Contemplate your energy use, the products in your daily life, and the waste that passes in and out of your household, and make a change. Then tweet @ForterraNW, blog about it or Instagram #ForterraNW and let us know how you are changing the game. We are all key players and no single move will win this game.