It now takes planet earth one year and six months to regenerate what we use in a year.
What does that mean?
"We are turning resources into waste faster than waste can be turned back into resources." Whether people believe climate change is real or not I think we can all admit that this generation is known as the "consumer class" and the environmental issues we see today can be linked to this consumption.
What do we have to do with it?
If everyone lived like western consumers, we would need resources from 5 planet earths to sustain us. From our overconsumption of poorly manufactured goods to our throw-away mentality to our careless carbon emissions. Most of these poor quality purchases will be thrown away before a year is up and the amount of energy we use daily burns a dangerous amount of fossil fuels. This hyper-consumerism and lack of agricultural care is depleting earth's resources at a terrifying rate. Global food operations are not sustainable either, posing the biggest threat to our ecosystem. Our current system is causing us to rapidly deplete ALL of our resources. Just to put into perspective, at our current rate of demand, we will run out of oil sources in 38 years.
What happens to the things I buy and waste?
Where does everything we throw away go? It gets dumped into landfills, buried into the ground with no hope of disappearing. Not only will our landfills overflow, but these materials also contain toxic substances that leak out into our environment. Our food scraps, that we don't compost, get suffocated in landfills producing methane - a dangerous green house gas that is directly related to global warming. Tons get dumped into the ocean (8 million tons a year to be exact). There is an actual trash vortex in the ocean that's twice the size of the United States floating between Hawaii and California.
What does electricity, heating our home, and driving an automobile have to do with carbon emissions? All of these things are created from fossil fuels. Fossil fuels are a non-renewable energy source thats to blame for three-quarters of our green house gas emissions.
Can I even help?
"The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it." -Robert Swan
I know the idea that everyone must participate to make a difference is a daunting one. However, the benefit is not only for the future generation and earth's overall survival, but its positive impact on our own daily lives. Our every day choices will make a huge difference in our individual health, happiness, and future. It's time to make our deliberate actions sustainable ones. The way to truly make a difference is to be a responsible consumer and to understand that your carbon footprint makes a difference, and to reduce it!
So, what is trash?
Trash, by definition, is anything that is discarded or refused that has no purpose. It has no probability of being reused or recycled. However, what does it mean for society? We have defined trash as an item that we no longer need in our lives, often disregarding where it actually needs to be going. If something is actual "trash", we need to rethink using what it was in the first place.
What exactly are greenhouse gas emissions?
There are a few compounds making up greenhouse gases. Carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and others. These gases allow sunlight to pass freely through the earths atmosphere, which then is partially absorbed by earths surface. They also trap heat in the atmosphere, keeping it warmer than it would without it. Hence why it is called greenhouse gases- because it acts exactly like a greenhouse. So the more gases you have, the more heat stays in. This idea is technically a good thing, until the rise of our industrial revolution. Our human activities are now producing these gases at a dangerous and sharp rate.
What's the big deal about plastic?
Plastic is literally the bane of our existence. It has been integrated in almost every packaging design for cheap and convenient purpose, yet has the most direct harm to our earth. Its been bombarding our land and waterways, and causing death and destruction to millions of living organisms. It is toxic to our bodies - containing harmful chemical additives that are linked to cancer, infertility, reproductive system damages and so much more. Recycling plastic is unreliable and always down-cycled into a less quality form until it has to be thrown into a landfill. When in a landfill it takes thousands of years to degrade. No, No, No.
Want to get started on being trash/plastic free?
Yay!! If you want to get started or are curious about how to make less of an impact, go to the Get started tab at the top of the screen or click the bold!
Want to get started on eating sustainably?
Yay! If you want to know exactly how and why our practices are simply not working and how you can change the global warming game by eating sustainably, go to the Preserve tab at the top of the screen or click the bold!