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Richard Gilliam's avatar

Richard Gilliam

PLNU Sustainable Superstars Summer 2021

Points Total

  • 0 Today
  • 0 This Week
  • 2,705 Total

Participant Impact

  • up to
    20
    miles
    not traveled by car
  • up to
    16
    pounds of CO2
    have been saved
  • up to
    73
    disposable cups
    not sent to the landfill
  • up to
    1,075
    minutes
    spent exercising
  • up to
    60
    minutes
    spent learning
  • up to
    2,905
    minutes
    spent outdoors
  • up to
    72
    more servings
    of fruits and vegetables
  • up to
    1,830
    minutes
    not spent in front of a screen
  • up to
    20
    miles
    traveled by foot
  • up to
    1,280
    gallons of water
    have been saved

Richard's Actions

Community

Support Businesses Owned by People of Color

Racial inequity is both a sustainability and justice problem. I will support businesses owned by people of color in my community whenever I shop.

COMPLETED 10
DAILY ACTIONS

Action Track: Building Resilience

Support a Sharing Economy

I will create or support a sharing economy with family, friends, neighbors or classmates.

COMPLETED 7
DAILY ACTIONS

Health

More Fruits and Veggies

I will eat a heart healthy diet by adding 3 cup(s) of fruits and vegetables each day to achieve at least 4 cups per day.

COMPLETED 17
DAILY ACTIONS

Waste

Use a Reusable Mug

I will avoid sending 3 disposable cup(s) to the landfill each day by using a reusable mug.

COMPLETED 22
DAILY ACTIONS

Energy

Adjust the Thermostat

I will adjust my thermostat down 2 degrees from usual when I use the heat, and up 2 degrees when I use air conditioning.

COMPLETED 51
DAILY ACTIONS

Transportation

Walk Instead

I will walk 1 mile(s) each day instead of driving and avoid sending up to 0.0 lbs of CO2 into Earth's atmosphere.

COMPLETED 15
DAILY ACTIONS

Nature

Spend Time Outside

I will replace 30 minute(s) each day typically spent inside (computer time, watching television, etc.) with quality time outside.

COMPLETED 37
DAILY ACTIONS

Waste

Tour A Waste Management Facility

I will spend at least 30 minute(s) touring (virtually or in person) a local dump/transfer station, material recovery facility, and/or landfill to learn about our local waste and waste recovery streams.

Completed
One-Time Action

Nature

Go for a Daily Walk

I will take a 10-minute walk outside each day.

COMPLETED 42
DAILY ACTIONS

Water

5-Minute Showers

I will save up to 20 gallons (75 L) of water each day by taking 5-minute showers.

COMPLETED 64
DAILY ACTIONS

Feed

  • Reflection Question
    Waste Use a Reusable Mug
    Maybe you've heard how good it is to switch from a single use coffee cup to a reusable one, but it's just hard to make the switch. What stands in your way of making this a habit? By identifying the challenges, you can begin to work through them to have better success in taking this action. Knowing the difference you are making, how does it make you feel?

    Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 8/15/2021 9:48 PM
    Covid has complicated the practice of bringing your own cup. Pre-covid you could refill your reusable coffee cups, buy most businesses have discontinued that practice during the pandemic. However, I make a pot of coffee the night before work and fill my reusable cup. This allows me to have a large iced coffee every morning for work. The additional benefit is that I save between $15-30 every week by not buying coffee everyday.
  • Reflection Question
    Community Support Businesses Owned by People of Color
    A recent Keen Independent Research Foundation study found that Minority Businesses Enterprises (MBEs) are more likely to have difficulties in receiving loans or city contracts. In what ways can you work to address systemic racism like that demonstrated in this study?

    Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 8/02/2021 11:31 PM
    I think it is important to understand that not all minorities experience the same hardships or barriers to enterprise; this is especially true in a diverse city like San Diego. Black business owners have a significantly smaller footprint in this city than Asian and Latino businesses. For this reason I think it is important to seek out and go out of my way to support black businesses, hire black contractors, hire/refer black real estate agents, etc. As business increases and money circulates in black communities, business opportunities will increase and barriers to enterprise will decrease. 
  • Reflection Question
    Action Track: Building Resilience Support a Sharing Economy
    What are some of the barriers to sharing economies? What is your plan for supporting or creating one in your community?

    Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 8/02/2021 11:22 PM
    I don't think there are too many barriers to sharing economies on a communal scale. Individual reluctance is probably the most notable barrier; people not wanting to participate. I currently support a community Buy Nothing group; I predominantly post goods that I no longer use or need and occasionally browse through what others are looking for to see if I have anything to share or give

  • Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 7/13/2021 9:57 PM
    I've been going on significantly less walks outside, and spending less time outside in general as summer temperatures have risen. But at least I've been doing pretty well at limiting air conditioning use and relying mostly on fans and open windows for cooling the house.
  • Reflection Question
    Waste Tour A Waste Management Facility
    Field trip! What a fun way to learn about our impact and consumption! What facility did you tour? What did you learn?

    Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 6/27/2021 6:12 PM
    I toured the San Diego Biosolids facility in Kearny Mesa. I learned about how they turned waste water into biosolids for use in fertilizers and other soil treatment uses. Also the plant is able to generate electrical power and serves a secondary function as a cogen facility.

  • Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 6/24/2021 10:06 PM
    A new challenge is trying to get my wife to limit showers to 5-minutes. That one isn't going so well.
  • Reflection Question
    Energy Adjust the Thermostat
    Your utility company is able to tell you your average energy usage. Ask them how your energy usage compares to others in your ZIP code, region, and/or state. What other steps can you take each day to reduce your electricity usage?

    Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 6/24/2021 10:03 PM
    Using the standard oven instead of a convection toaster oven is often more energy efficient. Switching all lightbulbs in the house to LED. I bought energy efficient appliances for my house. The whole family typically occupies the same room together throughout the day, this minimizes the amount of lights and devices running throughout the house.
  • Reflection Question
    Transportation Walk Instead
    Half of all trips made in the US are three miles or less; 72% of them are driven. Does this statistic describe your own transportation habits? If so, how might you incorporate more muscle-powered transportation in your daily life?

    Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 6/17/2021 10:31 PM
    Most of my driving consists of commuting to and from work, about 45 miles round trip. However, we do make trips to the grocery store that are around 3-5 miles round trip, but I don't think walking or bicycling to Costco is a viable alternative. The biggest habit I can cut out are the occasions when me or my wife take our son for a drive so that he can fall asleep for his naps.

  • Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 6/17/2021 10:23 PM
    The transportation based actions have definitely been the most challenging for me so far.
  • Reflection Question
    Nature Spend Time Outside
    Rachel Carson said that we need the beauty and mysteries of the natural world for our spiritual and emotional development. Does that ring true for you? What are the implications for a culture that spends most of its time indoors?

    Richard Gilliam's avatar
    Richard Gilliam 5/26/2021 9:15 PM
    There is definitely a level of freedom to be appreciated while outdoors and enjoying nature. I never truly understood how valuable that feeling was until my first underway onboard a submarine. Going weeks on end without sunlight or fresh air changes your perspective. I think that cultures that spend most of its time indoors miss out on a lot of the world's beauty.