As we enter a new year, I want to challenge everyone to reduce their garbage. Reducing your garbage is really about reducing consumption – the consumption of disposable, one-time-use products – and has far-reaching benefits. Read about the many benefits in my previous post, Disposing of Disposables.
According to Heather Rogers’ Gone Tomorrow: The Hidden Life of Garbage, , 80 percent of US products are used once and then thrown away! Isn’t that a shocking statistic? It means that 80% of our natural resources have been used up to make something that we will just throw away. See a list of one-time-use products in my post, Ten Minutes or Less. This statistic really puts a shameful light on the way our economy is based on creating a need for consumable products. It doesn’t have to be that way….
When we take from the Earth, we also need to give back to it. We need to return to the wisdom of ancient peoples, who understood and respected what the Earth gave us, and never took more than could be replenished. That is real sustainability. That is one of the things I want to explore in this project. Can I reduce my impact to the point that I am not taking away more than the Earth can give back, and how do I define that?
As the holidays approached, I have gotten busy and a little lazy. So for the New Year, I am getting back on the bandwagon and challenging myself to reduce my garbage even further than I have. Can I reduce my garbage down to say, just one bag a month? How do I define what is garbage and what is not? Others have already gone down the path to no garbage, so I’ll be looking to them for guidelines. In the meanwhile, I’ll keep a weekly track and tally of the garbage that I produce, including compost.
And how about you? Can you find one disposable item to reject, and start reducing your garbage? Can you look into your garbage bag and see what kind of garbage you are producing and make a change? Read about all the benefits in my previous post, Disposing of Disposables. I hope you will join me in my efforts to make this a Non-Disposable Earth.
Happy New Year!