Sunday, September 11, 2005

What about your Seventh Generation?

While I was cleaning the shower (with baking soda) today, I was wondering about the environmental impact of Hurricane Katrina on the planet. Then it hit me, the waste that you and I produce on a daily basis must far outweigh the impact of such a natural disaster. When you go to the grocery store, do you say 'plastic' when asked (most stores don't even ask these days) because they are easier to handle than paper? Do you know that these bags aren't recycleable and there are warehouses filled with 'returned' bags and stores are holding them until someone figures out what to do with them? Countries such as Ireland, India, Germany and Kenya are starting to ban them for this reason. I carry 2 canvas and one European style 'net' bag when I go to the grocery store. In Seattle, the grocers always knew what to do with them and even gave me a .10 cent discount per bag. It's not much but at least they were recognizing my effort. Out here on the east coast, I have literally had baggers put the groceries in plastic bags and then in my canvas bag. Most often, they look at the bags searching for a bar code and ask if I want to buy them. So, what if more people used canvas bags? What if grocery stores really encouraged people to use them? The average plastic grocery bag that you use for 1 hour, will last 1000 years, a canvas bag is cotton or hemp so it will last you a good 10-20 years of use. Think about how many bags you could save from a landfill. Better yet, just as the Native American philosophy goes, think of the everyday choices that you make and the impact it will have on the next seven generations. Why not spend $10 and be proactive? Your kids(7) will thank you.


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