Recently, I have grown a pair of plastic detecting eyes.
I scan my living room and we are drowning in plastic.
Childrens toys. Plastic.
Amazon packaging. Plastic.
Shampoo bottles. Plastic.
Food staples packaging. Plastic.
And I have absolutely no idea what happens to all my waste after I segregate it. Is it recycled or does it lie in a landfill somewhere?
As I said, I have grown a pair of plastic detecting eyes. I don’t really know what triggered it. Maybe it was that during AtoZ 2018, I wrote poetry about causes that mattered and somewhere along the way, my awareness about our lifestyle of excesses stood itself up in front of my eyes, waiting to be noticed. I wrote about organizations like 1 Million women and Tree Sisters, that shaped my way of thinking. I also wrote about the famous Chipko movement and fantasized myself as a treehugger. Olive Ridleys, those beautiful turtles, getting choked by swallowing plastic is what nightmares are made of.
The good news is, efforts are underway to change this. July has been declared as “Plastic Free July” and a lot of people are taking up the challenge of refusing single-use plastic the whole month. The current Indian government has promised to make India single-use plastic free by the year 2022.
Good things. Good things.
In the light of such events and newly acquired eye powress, I have been trying to be more aware of the choices I am making to reduce plastic consumption and waste in my life, and the realization is suffocating: In our current lifestyle, it is very difficult to live plastic-free. It is being termed as an “alternative lifestyle choice”. It takes a great amount of thought, planning and extra effort. A zero-waste lifestyle seems daunting.
We cannot go cold turkey on plastic, there is plastic everywhere. The idea is to make small changes over the course of a couple of years. Also, this should not be an alternative lifestyle. I believe a couple of generations ago, it was the norm. People bought in bulk in sacks, stored in dubbas at home and reused. For our convenience, we have inconvenienced every other species on this planet.
Will you be interested in learning how to live a more sustainable lifestyle(lesser consumption, more resuse and less waste) though you need to go that extra mile? What is one thing that you can change today to reduce your carbon footprint?
I’ll go first: I intend to start a blog dedicated to a more environment friendly lifestyle, explore differerent alternatives, document my learnings with the intention to move me, my family and you towards a more sustainable world. I would love to use it as an ideation medium to generate solutions with a group of like-minded individuals, to create solutions which is bigger than us.
I know the finish line is really far, but I, we, need to start today.
This post is written for Bar-A-Thon Day 3.