Behind the scene of recycling
I have started reading articles on sustainability and discover interesting facts about going green. Due to the current situation, businesses are figuring ways to cope with the bad economic situation by focusing on sales and remain in business. Being sustainability is not the business’s main concern temporarily.
With my humble understanding, China and most of developing countries such as India, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Thailand closed the border for waste import from western countries in 2018 and 2019. As a result, western countries figure out alternatives ways to handle the waste. Incineration waste to energy is one of the options besides landfilling.
This process may curb waste and produce energy at the same time, but it leads to another problem. Carbon emission. Some incinerators able to filter out toxic gaseous but not 100% of the gaseous will be filtered. In the end, polluted gas still being released into the atmosphere. Therefore, we, as responsible consumers, should not solely rely on the recycling center to handle the waste.
Recycling is no doubt a good practice. However, there are downsides when consumers are into wish recycling – a desire to believe that everything can be recycled-
This mentality causes recycling to be even harder due to cross-contamination. To be able to recycle effectively, consumers required to be educated about what can be recycled and whatnot. Recycling is not an easy procedure and required effort, time, and dedication from us.
I found an amazing site on sustainability Treehugger. It consists of wonderful tips on recycling and reducing waste at home and broad topics from living sustainability to corporate responsibility. Upon reading sustainability materials on this site, I realized some going green methods implemented in Western countries may be different compared to Asia countries because of lifestyle and cultural differences.
Here are some tips that I found that can be implemented in our lovely home no matter where we are. I believe these little actions will bring tremendous impacts to the environment through each of us, as the-end consumers.
Recycle plastic at home (DIY)
We have no idea how exactly recycling waste will be handled, whether through incineration which creates harmful gaseous into the atmosphere or landfilling. Ideally, recycle as much as possible at home would be the best option. I always wanted to have an egg whisker to make simple egg dishes or even bake a cake. Therefore, I made an egg whisker using a plastic bottle. To be honest, I have no idea using plastic-made whiskers would have any side effects in the long run but at least I could recycle it in a way I could think of. That was my first step toward going green by recycling plastic at home. It may be a small achievement, but I am practicing something I believe in.
Start with one small action that helps the environment and make it into a habit
I was not an environmental person and like most people, I would just throw whatever it is not required in my life into any bins. However, in the effort of going green. I practice baby steps by sorting recyclable items such as containers, and boxes little by little and make sure every container is clean to avoid cross-contamination. What is the purpose of recycling if they are not clean to be recycled? No matter how much we wanted to believe that the recycling center would clean for us. Unfortunately, they do not.
Reducing microfiber clothing and wear natural fibers clothing
We, as the end consumer, could make a change in the fashion industry if we demand more natural fibers clothing. By gradually changing our wardrobe into more sustainable clothing and joining the fashion revolution (that’s another option), we could send out an important message to fashion industry businesses to produce more sustainable products.
Consume less a.k.a practice minimalism in your comfort
I could not emphasize how important to consume less in every aspect of our life. Foods, clothing, appliances, everything. The easiest way to be more sustainable is to consume less. Everything that we consume produces waste and there is no guarantee they will be going through the recycling process. Landfilling plastic and incineration are not the best alternatives either. Hence, we simply need to consume less and recycle at home in the long run.
Hopefully, these four simple steps would guide you guys to be more sustainable.
Have a nice day!