Consumer Goods Update — June

I’m now keeping track of consumer goods more exactly for Riot goals — the 90% target is $1000 per year, which works out to a little over $80/month. This is including all types of “stuff”, other than food, education, and medical costs. Used goods count as 10% of the original cost, since most of the environmental impact went to making them in the first place. I’m not sure how I’m going to track event-type costs…I think I’ll document them anyway and then decide what to do with them.

So, for June I spent $158, on some much-needed clothing and used books. That’s about 18% of US average and was, I think, more money than I usually spend. I’ll see how things go for the rest of the year; I started off July with buying two dozen canning jars.

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3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    tirerim said,

    How do you determine the original cost for used goods? I’m sure that I pay more than 10% of the original cost for most used things I buy, but it varies a lot depending on how old the thing is. And then there’s inflation to deal with…

    $1000 seems pretty tough, though. In three of the past five years I’ve made a major electronics purchase that exceeded that all by itself.

  2. 2

    limesarah said,

    Sorry, “original cost” being the price you pay for the object — used goods have a pretty negligible carbon cost unless you’re shipping heavy ones cross-country for some reason. And yeah, it’s tough. I haven’t gotten to 90% in any category except garbage, though I can do water if I really try. The water part isn’t really applicable here, since we currently have rather too much of it, so I’m just going for “not profligately wasting it”.

  3. 3

    tirerim said,

    Hm, yeah. Looking at the guidelines, even for gas, which I ought to be pretty good at seeing as I don’t have a commute or a car, I’ve probably used 56 gallons this year, the vast majority of it on intercity travel. (A couple of those trips were by plane; taking the train instead would have saved about 14 gallons.) And all of my travel this year has been within the northeast; a single coast-to-coast round trip would be well over 50 gallons even on land.


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