Sustainability seems to have been the buzz word for 2011. With the growing desire to be greener, Princeton is becoming even more responsible for doing its part to protect the planet. How sustainable is Princeton? From my point of view, Princeton is a green community, but there’s room for improvement, i.e. installing solar panels. If we all make a few changes, we can make a difference.
Princeton Township has been collecting plastic grocery bags for years, and will give you one cloth bag for every 20 plastic bags you bring in. The BYOBag campaign from Sustainable Princeton promotes the use of reusable cloth bags for shopping. They have a link to the trailer Bag It on their Facebook fan page, which is the first three minutes of a documentary about the impact that plastic has on our lives.
CSAs (community supported agriculture) are basically farms supported by its customers. Since it’s a co-op, you buy farm shares by paying up front for a year’s worth of harvest, which is sort of like hiring the farmer to grow produce for you. How cool is that? The risks are, you will probably receive items you don’t normally buy or may not like, and the weather determines the crop, so you may not get as much produce as you were hoping for. The advantages are you get farm fresh produce at the peak of flavor; you can choose an organic farm; you support local farmers; you’re eliminating the middle man which includes transportation, and the farmers know you hold them accountable, so to be successful they have to offer quality produce, drastically reducing the chances of salmonella, listeria, etc.
Below is a list of some local CSAs. Honey Brook has been around for a long time, and is larger with a wider selection. Consider signing up now before shares sell out in the beginning of the year. If you’re new to CSAs, consider a half a share to test the waters.
- Cherry Grove Organic Farm
- Chickadee Creek Farm
- Griggstown Quail Farm and Market
- Honey Brook Organic Farm
Farmer’s Market – Local farmers have a central venue to sell their produce, meats, etc. Staying local decreases transportation… you get the picture. Read about the Princeton Farmer’s Market here.
Eating local – There are restaurants in town that support local farmers.
Preserves/Conservations – There’s a good amount of open space in Princeton. We let the trees play their important role for the environment. Also, not overbuilding helps with our carbon footprint.
Recycling – Princeton participates in a program that recycles #s 1 & 2 plastics, glass, aluminum, cans, and paper. There are also scheduled dates to dispose of other products.
Consignment Stores – Greene Street, Jane, Milk Money, Nearly New, and One-of-a-Kind allow for the repurpose of clothing, accessories and household items instead of adding them sooner to the landfills.
Sharrows – These markings on selected streets are to make drivers more conscientious about cyclists on the road, and encourage bike riding downtown. I’d prefer to have bike lanes, but it’s a more expensive solution.
free B Jitney Shuttle – This free bus transports passengers during the rush hours to the dinky and throughout the borough to alleviate congestion, and encourage using public transportation.
Read more about Sustainable Princeton.
What do you think are some other ways to make Princeton sustainable? Please leave your comments below the poll.