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Waste In America and China


Below is an Infographic that I found on Climate Progress.  It is a great representation of how our current version of “progress” is completely unsustainable.
Life of Garbage
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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Martin Lack permalink
    2012/04/18 6:50 am

    Up until last year, I had spent much of the preceding decade involved in waste management. Having initially got involved with doing risk assessments on landfills in 2002, I was in fact delighted to be made redundant four years later – as a consequence of private sector investment in all kinds of project designed to reduce the proportion of UK waste going to landfill. Funnily enough, this was achieved by a little market-based behaviour modification tool called… Landfill Tax!

    • 2012/04/18 4:59 pm

      Wouldn’t be great if we could get government to stop (or at least reduce) taxation of income and instead tax the bad stuff like sending waste to landfills, emitting carbon dioxide, polluting water, making horrible tv shows…

      Seriously though, it’s great to hear that the UK was able to tackle the problem. I guess it’s one of the only ways that being made obsolete is a good thing : )

  2. 2012/04/21 11:57 pm

    Long way to go yet. The county of Hawaii fought and rejected a bottle bill for years. Finally a 6 cent deposit (tax) was passed a couple years ago. Now with 5 cents redeemable there is virtually no glass, plastic or aluminum bottles littering the roadsides. The recycling centers are busy 7 days a week and continue to expand. Garbage is a growth industry. Unfortunately there are stll many many people that just want there waste to disappear – flush it down the toilet, put it in the sink disposal or wrap it up in black plastic bags for pick up. Society needs to learn they are responsible for their consumption still yet.

    • 2012/04/22 10:49 am

      That’s great to hear (the first part of your comment). Here in PEI, it’s actually been a bit of “one step forward, two steps back”. When I first moved here (six years ago), there was a can ban – all pop and beer was in glass bottles. That means all the bottles were being re-used (and we also had a deposit). We still have the deposit, but the ban is gone, so our litter is now aluminum cans and plastic bottles. And, despite the deposit, a lot of it ends up in ditches. I spent about 3 hours yesterday cleaning up the ditches around my house and a large portion of what I found was alcohol bottles and cans. (Drinking and driving is a big problem here.)

      The sad part is that we have an excellent waste management system despite our low population and low population density. We have “curbside” pick up of recycling (once a month), compost and waste (alternating once a week). We all pay for it, but not everyone uses it.

      • 2012/04/22 2:33 pm

        Aluminum is fetching a very good price these days. One hope is through getting the children involved. Glad you had a day to pick things up.

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