Wednesday, August 22, 2007

talking trash

Here in Juneau our dump is turning into a mountain. Granted, our family hasn't helped the cause any to keep it down. I honestly don't know where all our trash comes from. We have our regular trash pickup on Thursdays, but in addition, we probably take six pickup loads of "stuff" to the dump each year. In our defense, we also offer to take our children's stuff when we go, or when they need something taken, we can usually fill the truck up with our stuff as well. But our dump site is becoming a mountain quite rapidly and I honestly don't know how much higher they can go!

I'd like to say we collect trash from the side of the road just so we can dispose of it, but, sadly, that is not so.... It's just stuff.... sometimes remodeling remnants, a broken water heater, or old chicken wire that no longer has a use. But seriously, where does it all come from? I know of no other family that disposes of so much trash as us!

I always felt we did our share of taking care of the earth. We compost as much as we can. All of our fruits, vegies, coffee grounds, egg shells, get composted into these plastic compost bins. We can easily fill them both up by the end of fall. We don't do a lot of composting in the winter because of snow and ice but I suppose we could put a temporary trash can in the garage and keep it going all year long.

We try to burn all of our cardboard in the back yard. "Try" but often it just gets thrown in the trash. What I would really like is for Costco to not double bag and box their products....

We take all our plastic grocery bags back to a recycle center or our local thrift shop to reuse. I know that cloth bags are the next step; I just have to do it.

I thought we were doing good.... But as I was reading Simply Splendid the other day, I realized that we're not doing all that we could be doing. I don't want to be the cause of a landfill mountain! I want my grandbabies to have a healthy earth to live on, and their grandbabies. So we did what any normal, earth-conscience person would do....

We headed to Fred Meyers and bought plastic containers to hold our recyclable trash in. We don't have curbside recycle here otherwise I think more people would recycle. But we can take it to the dump for free and they ship it down south to recycle centers.

So now, we have a basket for each category at the recycle center: newspapers/catalogs/magazines; aluminum; mixed paper; #1 clear plastic; #2 clear plastic; #2 colored plastic; plastic bags; cans; and bottles.

It does take a conscience effort to take a minute to look on the back of one of those Costco plastic fruit holders to see if it's a plastic #1 or plastic #2 because you can't combine the two in a recycle center. It also takes a minute to save all this trash and take it out to the garage. But we can do it; it won't hurt us.

So, thank you Jeanetta, for being persistent with your "go green" articles. Even if I'm the only person that listened and is taking action.... maybe your next article will bring two more and then three and then pretty soon the whole world will be following in your footsteps! :) We still have a long ways to go. I'd like to learn how to clean without using so many harsh products. And simply not cleaning is not an option! I'd welcome any tips on how to "go green."

There's still a lot we can do but they'll be gradual changes. My hubby can only take so much change in his life. Baby steps. If we all just take baby steps, we will make a difference. Nancy


ShabbyInTheCity said...

Yeah I think going green is harder than I might think. My mother always kept a compost and it made me feel good when I was a child knowing she was doing something good like that.

lazylol said...

Hi - I discovered your blog this week. Re-cycling is something I've been thinking about a lot lately too. We are going to have a huge problem with landfill here in the UK in a few years if we don't recylce more.
I hope you don't mind but I've tagged you, don't worry if you don't want to join in though.