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Sun Apr 22, 2012, 11:20 AM

One person can make a difference - Happy Earth Day

Last edited Sun Apr 22, 2012, 03:10 PM - Edit history (1)

Just got back from another after-prom party. As usual, nobody was recycling. This time instead of constantly picking cans out of the trash, I decided to try something different. I took an empty trash can and put a hand-made sign that said "recycle" on it. In that manner I managed to recycle 96 cans and 26 plastic bottles. Still ended up with a fair number of cans in the trash. I doubt if more than 70% were recycled.

And, of course, 96 cans is only 2.5 or 3 pounds, which hardly makes any kind of dent in the 1.34 billion pounds that get thrown away every year http://journals.democraticunderground.com/hfojvt/171 Still, it is better than nothing. Those 1.34 billion pounds generally get thrown away one can at a time. Hopefully I also helped to remind fifty or sixty young people that recycling is a good thing, that they can get in the habit of recycling.

At another job, I was moving some bottles from the trash to the recycling, and one of the bartenders sarcastically asked if I was going to "save the earth". Obviously, I am not. I am not an Atlas who can pick up the world on my massive shoulders. But I can do something, and I think that every little bit helps. I recycle more than my share of the total 2.73 billion pounds used each year, even though I cannot personally reduce the amount discarded even from 1.3400 to 1.3399 billion pounds on my own.

But I can do a part. If the earth doesn't get saved, it won't be because I didn't do my part. Like John Lennon, I am sure I am not the only one, and hope that others someday will join us.

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Arrow 8 replies Author Time Post
Reply One person can make a difference - Happy Earth Day (Original post)
hfojvt Apr 2012 OP
hfojvt Apr 2012 #1
stuntcat Apr 2012 #2
WorseBeforeBetter Apr 2012 #3
hfojvt Apr 2012 #6
cbayer Apr 2012 #4
hfojvt Apr 2012 #8
Phentex Apr 2012 #5
OneGrassRoot Apr 2012 #7

Response to hfojvt (Original post)

Sun Apr 22, 2012, 03:11 PM

1. okay, I may have been wrong

maybe I am (almost) the only one

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Response to hfojvt (Original post)

Sun Apr 22, 2012, 03:45 PM

2. people mocking "save the Earth" kill me

I know too many of them, my own inlaws pick on me and mock me.

If someone asks me that question from now on I'd just say "I wish" and hope they'll leave me alone.

I'm in the capital beltway but it's rainy and cold and I can't drive so I'm not going out to Earth Day. I'll stay here and help out some bugs and birds in the garden

(edit: TOTALLY good work on the bottles. As little difference as it might make you can have peace knowing you did something instead of watching it all go to landfill. I mean we know it happens everywhere every day but just standing around watching gives me a bad feeling.)

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Response to stuntcat (Reply #2)

Sun Apr 22, 2012, 03:58 PM

3. I didn't do anything formal either.

I'm enjoying the chilly, drizzly weather in Raleigh, and planted a couple of shrubs, took out the recycling, tended to the compost heap, and fed the worms. Just enough productivity on my so-called day of rest.

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Response to stuntcat (Reply #2)

Sun Apr 22, 2012, 06:26 PM

6. thanks, it just annoys me that none of the students object

At 17 and 18 it matters more to their future than it does to mine at age 50. But none of them ask "why aren't we recycling"?

They did a good job though, once I put the trash can next to the recycle bin. Usually, you end up with more trash in the recyclables. But I had about 8 trash cans and only one recycle bin, so many people put their recycling in the nearest trash can.

The thing that really bothers me about the aluminum is that people are throwing away money. Sure, 96 cans is only about $1.50 or $2, but if you multiply that by the thousands of proms across the country and then multiply that by the other weekends where there are wedding receptions or other parties $2*1,000*52 is $104,000. If all the juniors and seniors collected cans all year at home, they might be able to raise enough money to pay for the prom.

I am reminded of this because when I was in cub scouts, we used to raise money by going door to door and asking people to donate their returnable bottles. It used to be 5 or ten cents for a glass bottle back when 5 or ten cents would actually buy something.

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Response to hfojvt (Original post)

Sun Apr 22, 2012, 04:00 PM

4. Every little bit helps. Happy Earth Day to you!

I have a very, very small footprint and I am always amazed when I visit others and watch them run the water, leave every light in the house on, drive just a few blocks, run the AC with the doors open.

It takes everything I have not to scream at them.

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Response to cbayer (Reply #4)

Sun Apr 22, 2012, 06:32 PM

8. I don't see much of that

I guess I only visit family and all us kids had it ingrained in us to conserve. We do, however, have the TV on a lot.

If every light in the house is on, it could just be that they are lovesick.

&ob=av2n

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Response to hfojvt (Original post)

Sun Apr 22, 2012, 04:20 PM

5. Great!

Happy Earth Day and thanks for doing your part.

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Response to hfojvt (Original post)

Sun Apr 22, 2012, 06:27 PM

7. You're not the only one...

Hey,l we have to try. Good on you.

Happy Earth Day.



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