Environmental Impact of Interning

Ok, I know I just posted. I just became a little aware that I can get compensated for 10 blogs,  but not fewer than 10… I doubt I’ll write 5 more blogs in the next week, but you never know.

At the internship on Monday, I did a lot of filing. I made new files, took old ones out of the cabinet, and generally did a lot of organizing. It made me think a lot about paper and the environment. Some thoughts about the environmental impact of my day.

8:20-9– Got on the bus. Feeling good about that impact, wishing there were more buses and fewer cars, as usual, because it takes forever to get down to M Street from AU, which it really shouldn’t. Also, less cars is good for the Earth.

9-12– Filed so many papers. I must have taken 200 outdated files out of the cabinet, and asked my boss if I could reuse them to make some of the new folders. She said no, because it’s policy to keep those correspondences for a certain amount of time. Which I get. Nobody has time to scan that stuff, but all I could think of was taken paper in paper folders out of a wooden file cabinet, and into cardboard boxes. As my Green Eagle friend would say, “oof.” It was a lot of tree products, which is just going to be shut away an not looked at. Hopefully when it can be disposed of in 5-10 years (I don’t know) it will be recycled.

12-1– Lunch break. I ate my seitan and rice out of the reusable container I brought, and drank water from a glass and used a plastic fork (which I’ve used before and I’ll wash and use again). That’s not too shabby for the environment. I spent some time on the computer checking email and reading the news. Also good. I also read the Post this morning in paper form, but I missed a lot of stuff, because I only read it for like 5 minutes while I made toast.

1-3– Back to filing, and some computer work. I printed about 20 pages (oof again) and felt SO bad taking all 250 folders from the supply room. I mean, that’s what it’s there for, that’s not what I felt bad about. Many Congressmen/women will not ever correspond with IMLS. I hope when they leave office and another intern cleans out the file cabinet in 10 years, they can reuse the ones that were empty. The empty ones I took out (only about 15) I reused. Reduce, reuse, recycle. That’s the proper order too. Reduce is definitely most important.

3-3:40–N2 is my favorite route, it drops me right at the corner of New Mexico and Nebraska Avenues. Wonderful, right on campus. Listened to music.

3:45– Got an iced chai from the Dav. I did not need to do that, and I felt bad, even though the service was good and the drink was tasty. I try to avoid getting iced drinks because I can’t use a reusable mug. Sadness. But the Dav is good about using recycled goods, and I recycled my cup.

And my life went on, non-internship related. I still think about it though, a lot… the environment is so important, and if I knew more about it, I’d go into the carbon footprint of my day. I guess I’m asking you, reader, if you exist, to think about the environment too.

Thanks.

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