Love Earth – Hate Waste!
OK, so there is a big problem that I really want to talk about.. (sigh) It’s trash…
Do you agree? Does it bug you when you walk into Trader Joe’s and EVERYthing you see is triple wrapped in plastic? Or, you take the fam to go grab some ice cream and EVERY single plastic spoon is covered in plastic wrap?
It’s maddening, honestly. I mean I get it, we need to keep things sanitary. Unfortunately, our planet is at a point where these practices are not going to provide a pretty future for our childrens children. There is simply nowhere to put it.. And where we have chosen to put it thus far (landfills, ocean) is already effecting wildlife and humankind adversely…
For example: Out in the middle of the Great Pacific is a gigantic floating patch of garbage, also described as the Pacific trash vortex. This gyre of marine debris is described as being the size of Texas. The garbage becomes trapped there as a result of the existing currents and there are likely more areas throughout our oceans that have set up similarly due to our never ending flow of waste..
How this effects us: As the trash floats through the waves and currents (plastic specifically) it gradually breaks down into pellet size. Varieties of wildlife will ingest the small pieces of plastic, mistaking it for food. As you can imagine, the animals are unable to digest these plastic pieces. As nature takes place the larger predatory fish prey on the small plant (or plastic) eating fish and are then effected by it as well. Ultimately, humans then catch the larger fish for consumption.. and as a result, we are essentially eating our own trash.
For a breakdown of some of the health risks associated with BPA and/or plastics click here
This cycle is simply one example of the problems occurring because of our lack of proper pre-planning.
Here’s the GOOD news… Ready? We can do something about it! ALL of us can. On average, one person creates 1, 550 lbs of trash per year. I feel like that’s a bit excessive, agreed??
Below is a list of some pretty easy waste reducing opportunities, please feel free to add YOUR ideas in the comments!
~ KEEP a silver ware set in your car. Use them whenever you are dining at an eatery that only offers disposable forks, knives and spoons.
~ USE your own cup when you visit your favorite coffee shop! This is huge because I know some of us (me) stop for coffee almost daily.. Some establishments will actually offer a discount on your purchase for saving the cup.
~ ALWAYS bring your own re-usable bags on your grocery store visits.. In my area, stores now charge 10 cents a bag. Its interesting how quickly you change your habits when the waste generating bags are no longer free…
~ PURCHASE reusable bags to bring to the store for items you buy in bulk as well as your produce. The small plastic bags provided to us are put to good use for about 20 minutes, then they are off to the landfill…. Total waste.
~ SKIP the straw when dining out (or in)
~ BUY local whenever possible, this reduces the carbon footprint and gas emissions associated with the transport of goods around the world.
~ TRY your best not to purchase single serving items. Buying larger items and splitting them up at home into reusable containers is helpful. Or better yet make your own granola bars, dried fruit and other snack items.
Lastly, if you want to get really involved, contact the local businesses in your area that you feel could make some waste saving changes. Ask if they would consider your thoughts.. you never know! One thing is for sure, in most cases, changes will not occur unless the public demands it..
Please leave your thoughts in the comments! And PLEASE join me in taking a few steps to cutting down on trash..
If there is any subject matter you would like to see posted, let me know! I am here for you! Ta-ta!!