In the society that we live in today, there is such an overwhelming desire to just make money and big businesses that are stuck in this capitalist system will not put the environment before edging out their competition. The way that the United States, and the world in general, is headed is going to have catastrophic effects on the environment and in turn, the people – starting from the people living in poverty, even though they are not the source of the issue itself. There are so many ways to reduce waste and consumption and people just need to open their eyes to new ideas and make small changes in their lifestyles. Some of these ways include considering a zero-waste lifestyle, beginning a garden and making some of your own food and recycling as much as possible.
Moreover, one way to reduce waste is to look into what it takes to live a life with zero waste. Yes, of course this is extreme; however, there are a lot of smaller things that people could start to introduce to their daily lives and then go from there. For example, Lauren from her blog Trash is for Tossers says that the process of living a zero waste lifestyle is not something that is just going to happen overnight or even in a week. First off, someone could stop buying plastic packaged items from the grocery store and buy items from bulk using your own containers. Something like this is so easy to incorporate into a lifestyle and in the long run is going to save you money because you will be just paying for the food you want and not all of the extra packaging.
Furthermore, another way to reduce waste and consumption is to start growing some of your own food through a garden in your yard or neighborhood. Ron Finley was even able to start his urban gardening in South Los Angeles. If he was able to do it along the sidewalks of a city, then it is definitely possible to do it in any area. This could make such a difference in a home and could allow a family or neighborhood to start a closed-loop system and then start composting as well. Also, if there are kids in the family or neighborhood it is so good for them to see how they can grow their own food and actually eat something healthy rather than just whatever is put in front of them and they are okay with it. Mr. Finley was so inspiring the way that he brought the gardening to his city in the vacant lots and how he was able to help so many people. He made it very clear that you can do it too, it does not take that much work – just one person to really get it going. Do not sit and wait for someone else to come out and make the change – there is no time for that. Go out and be the change that is needed right now.
Additionally, recycling is so unbelievably important in the way that people discard their waste because it makes a big difference in the volume of things that end up in landfills. It is so much better if people buy recycled goods from the start, if they are not able to buy it in bulk or make it themselves, because that prolongs keeping the items out of the landfill. The image to the right is a landfill with even more waste being loaded into it. People need to realize that the trash does not just stay there. Once landfill gets to a certain capacity, it is then burned off to make more room for the next load of trash that comes in. This is even worse because now the levels of greenhouse gas emissions are higher than they should be and there are no strict regulations on the degrees Celsius of increase anymore. We were pulled out of the Paris Agreement about a year ago and now we are not even held accountable by shame for the global warming we are causing because of our corrupted capitalist system. Ideally, the world’s temperature would not be increasing at all; however, at this rate our temperature will be increasing by seven degrees Celsius and that is going to have a horrible impact on the environment and the ways that people are currently living. The sea levels are rising and soon the houses of people who live close to the water are going to be in danger of major disasters during the hurricane season.
As a matter of fact, recycling would be one of the easiest ways to kickstart reducing waste and consumption and it has a massive positive impact on the environment. This article talks about the easy steps that can be taken to choose items that can be reused rather than tossed into a landfill and the change that it will make in the environment. Buying glass containers to carry food in rather than using plastic zip lock bags every day is just one thing that could be a small change with a large impact. Also, in the long run this would save the consume money because zip lock bags are thrown away after one use and the glass container would just be washed and reused.
All in all, it is so important to take reducing waste and consumption seriously, if not for you then for your future kids and grandkids. We do not want to live in a world full of waste and increased national disasters because we could not make a change now. The changes are not difficult, just start with the small things and work towards a zero-waste lifestyle, growing your own food and recycling as much as possible.