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Environmental Sensitivity

Trying to tread as lightly as possible on good old Mother Earth as we travel the continent

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View TaJ 2019 & TaJ 2019 - The Journey Home on Rooseboom-Scott's travel map.

As this entry is being written, we are in Dawson Creek, noted for being Mile Zero of the Alaska Highway. This will be our last few days in British Columbia before heading east across the prairies. It is also a time for us to recharge a bit. Dawson Creek is a city we are comfortable in as we lived here for 18 months beginning back in 2005. We’ll check out some old haunts, visit some friends and relax a bit.

One of the things we wanted to do on this trip was to be environmentally sensitive, while still traveling to our heart’s content. Here is how we have done so far:


We have traveled 14,600 kilometers since leaving home. Sully, our 2016 Honda Pilot, has consumed 2,373 litres of gas, at an average cost of $1.33 per litre. Each kilometer traveled has cost us $0.22 in gasoline. We keep really good track of our travel stats. We have towed the TaJ-ma-Haul, our 2017 R-pod Trailer for 10,035 k, the remaining 4,565 k has been local travel at our stops.
We do not use any drive-throughs. If we want to stop to eat, go to the bank, etcetera, we get out of the car, stretch and get some fresh air. We eat in restaurants, on plates whenever possible.

British Columbia has a “do not idle” law, but we see thousands upon thousands of vehicles idling away in the drive-through lane. A true waste of gas and the complete waste of the “do not idle” law.

We still have about 11,500 kilometers (or so) to get us home to Nova Scotia. The total cost of gas is about 20% of our travel budget and we do not feel this is excessive as we are towing our temporary home with us.

Coffee Cups:

We have used 5 disposable coffee cups in our 103 days on the road. Virtually every coffee on the road has been in our re-useable cups, or in china cups in coffee shops. We estimate we have saved about 275 disposable cups from being dumped into landfills.


Disposable Water Bottles:

We have used 3 disposable water bottles. 2 were bought to add to our water supply when we went on a 5-hour hike in Grasslands National Park. The other bottle we picked up for a hike to the Carmanah Walbran. We have refilled our permanent water bottles daily, sometimes more than daily. We have kept the disposable bottles and re-use them if we need additional water for other day-trips.

We drink tap water in every community that we visit and have found the quality to be pretty good for the most part.


Here is where RV parks and campgrounds are falling down a bit. Every community has different rules about recycling and it seems RV parks just take the shortest route. Almost all returnable bottles and cans are provided for, but after that it is pretty hit and miss. If we know where a local recycling depot is, we will use it.

Provincial and National Parks put in more effort to get people recycling and generally provide bins to cover just about all recycling needs.


Recently there has been much ado about the use of plastic straws. We solved this by purchasing stainless steel straws that can be easily cleaned when we do dishes. We have not used a plastic straw since leaving home.

Groceries and Shopping Bags:

We have a good supply of cloth shopping bags and take them with us on every shopping trip. For produce we either use a mesh bag or go without.
Wet produce, like lettuce, will force us to use a plastic bag, but we save these and re-use them when possible. We tend not to buy pre-packaged salads which comes with dressing and other condiments to add as these only increase the plastic waste.


It is hard to find items that are not wrapped in single use plastic. Just about everything in the grocery stores comes equipped with its own plastic waste. We carry re-useable peanut butter jars and go to bulk food stores to buy things like, flax, brown sugar, flour, and so on without having to use plastic bags.

We try to purchase at service meat counters whenever possible and ask them to wrap our purchases in paper instead of plastic, but even that is difficult. The good thing about buying at service counters is we can get smaller quantities i.e. a single chicken breast, or piece of fish. We travel with a small fridge and buying even a package of 4 chicken breasts can clog up our shelf space.Deli counters always use plastic bags for sliced meats, cheese, etc. It is hard to avoid.

Garbage Bags:

We use compostable garbage bags, which come in a roll of 100, from Costco. Each bag costs us about 10 cents, but at least we know they will disintegrate in a landfill in short order. Since it is so hard to avoid single use plastic as virtually everything comes wrapped in some form of plastic that cannot be recycled, the contents of our compostable bags may never disintegrate.



We will continue our efforts to be as gentle on the planet as possible, while still continuing to enjoy our travels.

Posted by Rooseboom-Scott 14:09 Archived in Canada Tagged recycle reduce reuse

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So lovely to see you put your love of nature and the earth into actions that minimize your carbon footprint.

by Shari

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