When folks tell me that they are zero waste...I have questions. Sure you brought your own bags, jars, containers, and such to refill at the bulk store. Sure it is less waste...but zero waste? What about the waste as a result of your earth friendly consumption? Those bulk bags and boxes that were emptied into the bin? Sure we can do a really, really good job...but zero? What old computers, cell phones, televisions, and small appliances? What about items that can no longer be serviced--art project perhaps? Yes, we can do really, really well--but zero? Even bicycles require repairs, lubricants, cables, new chains, new brake pads.
Perhaps we consider how much further we can go, how much we can influence change with our family, friends, neighbors--with local shops and business owners. I continue to bring my own doggie bag (aka dish and lid) and fork to a local cafe that uses plastic clam shells and plastic flatware as my non-verbal protest of the state of affairs. We can do better. Better takes time and effort, but I think that it is worth it.
All of this is only for us to consider more deeply our impact when we are consuming. How did it arrive at the store? Can it be repaired? What happens if it cannot be repaired? Did we really mean to head down the road of planned obsolesce? Even higher end small appliances that cannot be serviced after 3 years or so--is that what we wanted? $30 blenders--do we really think that is a good thing? What happens when we donate items? What happens to all the little bits? Why are there little bits? And so on. I think we often know many of the questions to ask--but are we asking the questions?
We have an impact living on earth. That's the fact. Impact. How can we lighten the impact and live wonderfully?
Check out this village in Japan and the sheer effort it takes to move towards zero waste!
- Special thanks to Dale, Nia, and Steph for all the love and support!
- Raleigh, the guy I love to hate when it comes to all things internet.
- Aaron Glasson, Permaculture Velocity logo
- Music: Tell Somebody by Alex Beroza featuring AdmiralBob, digccmixter, licensed under Creative Commons 3.0
- And to all those podcasters out there sharing good information on podcasting for those of us just getting going with this podcast thing! Thank you!