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Old 04-09-2013, 11:26 AM   #1
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Green Camping

I am curious to hear what others have done to make the most of a "green" camping experience. I know we discussed campground trash, and how in general we all seem to "leave nothing behind but footprints". What other measures do you take while camping?

At home, we have our recycling programs, I have my compost bin, water barrel, etc. We make efforts to minimize water and electricity use.... anyone with kids can understand the challenge there.

My husband and I have discussed someday putting in solar panels at home to heat our pool, but that's pretty expensive and down the road. I've even seen campers with solar panels!

While camping, I struggle with using disposable plates vs. non-disposable. I hate the thought of buying paper plates (ya know... killing trees and all that). But the advantage to paper is 1. I can throw them in the fire and 2. I don't have to use water to clean them.

What have you done to keep your camping experience as green as possible?
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:30 AM   #2
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I am curious to hear what others have done to make the most of a "green" camping experience. I know we discussed campground trash, and how in general we all seem to "leave nothing behind but footprints". What other measures do you take while camping?

At home, we have our recycling programs, I have my compost bin, water barrel, etc. We make efforts to minimize water and electricity use.... anyone with kids can understand the challenge there.

My husband and I have discussed someday putting in solar panels at home to heat our pool, but that's pretty expensive and down the road. I've even seen campers with solar panels!

While camping, I struggle with using disposable plates vs. non-disposable. I hate the thought of buying paper plates (ya know... killing trees and all that). But the advantage to paper is 1. I can throw them in the fire and 2. I don't have to use water to clean them.

What have you done to keep your camping experience as green as possible?
A lot of campgrounds that we have been to have recycle bins near the trash dumpsters for aluminum and plastic. Every little bit helps.
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:50 AM   #3
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We use Enviro-Logs instead of real wood for our campfires. They are made from the wax-covered paper used for food packaging. This saves trees, keeps all that food packaging material out of landfills and doesn't make your clothes smell like smoke. The purist outdoorsmen will scoff at this, but it works for us.
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Old 04-09-2013, 12:11 PM   #4
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Our seasonal CG collects "Cans for Cancer"...raised close to 20k last year.
RE: Paper plates...if you burn em, that's recycling in my opinion....energy is neither created nor lost...a law of physics. I don't buy the plastic or styrofoam ones.
We burn wood primarily from dead already trees. Whenever somebody in our neighborhood cuts down or trims, we usually ask for/purchase the wood to use at our CG.
Bought "green" garbage bags...but must admit they suck. Can poke a hole with a paper napkin. We tried. We do re-use grocery store bags for smaller wastebaskets and I've converted to the re-usables for the most part.
Since we're seasonal, we don't tow....rarely....saving the earth's fossil fuels.
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Old 04-09-2013, 01:24 PM   #5
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Love the outstanding note...well done
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Old 04-09-2013, 01:56 PM   #6
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RE: Paper plates...if you burn em, that's recycling in my opinion
But the CO2 created would contribute to global warming!
Seriously, when you consider the amount of gasoline or diesel burnt to get to the campground, there is no way to make camping a "green" activity.
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Old 04-09-2013, 07:28 PM   #7
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But the CO2 created would contribute to global warming!
Seriously, when you consider the amount of gasoline or diesel burnt to get to the campground, there is no way to make camping a "green" activity.

We are bad & no way around it our carbon footprint makes bigfoot look small....... The DW & I commute over 100 miles each daily, when I get to work I drive some more..... then we camp..... wasn't like that in the past but all the area jobs went overseas 10s of thousands of them just from this area.....

Our county where we live only recycles newspaper & cardboard.......

A few of the campgrounds where we camp do recycle paper & plastics.....which we do......

We can argue global warming all day so I won't.........................

As far wood I say use it , it provides jobs here & it will grow back (It is a renewable resource)..........

Its not that I do not want to be "green" but it does not work for us...... we do what we can though............
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Old 04-09-2013, 07:41 PM   #8
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But the CO2 created would contribute to global warming!
Seriously, when you consider the amount of gasoline or diesel burnt to get to the campground, there is no way to make camping a "green" activity.
Well, consider the energy spent to intake, process, and clean the water used. Or landfill space saved. I actually work in construction, and I've built water treatment plants and landfills. Not a simple process.

We can still do what we can. Even little things can make a difference. Think globally, act locally, right?

And taking our children out into the wild, learning to use what resources we have, will leave a legacy of sustainability.
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Old 04-10-2013, 12:17 AM   #9
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You're right! Small things add up. The important point you're raising is to try to be conscientious of it. Thanks for bringing up this thread to get people thinking of what they can do.
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Old 04-10-2013, 12:34 AM   #10
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A little off topic here, but to the OP's first post: solar panels to heat your pool would not be a great investment, nor energy efficient--plus, if your panels aren't hooked back into the grid, you don't get to earn the solar energy credits on what you're generating, which is a big help to offset the original cost of the panels. Better solution for you pool: solar heater. My sister has one on her pool. It's basically a mat of black rubber tubes up on her roof that you pump your pool water through. Water coming back down and out of the return is hot hot hot! And after the initial investment, it's free!
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