Wednesday, October 08, 2008

60 Percent Campaign – ABC Rally & Conquering Ubiquitous Garbage

Vote ABC (please)

Wondering who to vote for on October 14? How about who not to vote for.

Canada’s leading climate scientists are calling for Anything But Conservative!

Margaret Atwood highly recommends Anything But a Harper Majority. She’d even vote for the Bloc if it would annihilate one Conservative seat.

AVAAZ, the world’s citizen’s watchdog, is sending this little petition around: Save The Planet: Stop Harper! Even the world doesn’t want him.

NL Premier Danny Williams, himself a Conservative, cries ABC.

Artists and arts organizations, essential to sustainable communities, are calling for ABC.

David Suzuki would holler ABC if it didn’t threaten his Foundation’s federal grants. The Foundation and ten other leading environmental organizations asked party leaders to put their position on climate change on video. All but the Conservatives responded.

We’re six days away from the election and the Conservative lead is slipping. Save the biosphere. Save the arts. Save the Canada we all want to live in. It’s as simple as ABC – or VFE.

Time is a ticking. We have no time for a Harper plan on climate change. Check out the clarion call from Andrew Simms of the New Economics Foundation - The Final Countdown, printed in the Guardian in August. And then there is this amazing little film…


Jane and I have heard that word a lot this past week. Producing only one bag of garbage in three months is just plain impossible.

It’s not.

Jane and I often produce one bag of garbage per month. We’re stretching that out to three.

Torontonians can recycle at least two-thirds of our waste if we place our organics in the green bin and recycle packaging that the City accepts. Jane and I are just taking it one step further. This is how….

  • Directing most of our yard and food waste to our backyard compost. The compost is excellent mulch for our garden and lawn, which we apply in the spring and autumn.
  • We’re either going to place our dryer lint in the compost or in an onion net for the birds to pick at for their nests. We hang our clothing as much as we can, but are caught in the awkward period of cool days and a basement that’s still moist.
  • Feeding our stale bread to the birds.
  • Placing cat litter and organic waste that takes time to break down, such as avocado pits, in the City organic green bin.
  • Choosing items with packaging that the City of Toronto recycles.
  • Depositing plastic bags in the bag recycling bin at Sobeys or Metro.
  • Reducing our plastic bag collection by bringing canvass bags with us when we shop.
  • Wrapping our food in biodegradable plastic bags, picked up at the Carrot Common and Noah’s. Our house is a Saran wrap-free zone.
  • Using biodegradable plastic bags for organic waste.
  • Depositing cat hair and indoor dust in the garden – like what they did in the olden days. Cat hair ‘supposedly’ acts as a deterrent to animals that like to feast in the garden.

It’s really that simple. The challenge is to be mindful of what we purchase.

It amazes me the little things that turn up in the products we buy that cannot be recycled. The following reared their ugly land-fill bound heads this week:

What we Avoided or Reuse

  • The plastic pull off strip of concentrated juice cans. We knew this before which is why we are now buying organic juice in the 1.89 liter packaging. More packaging but it all gets recycled.
  • The plastic packaging of Jane’s soy cheese. This means she’s giving up on her beloved Sheese. What’s the alternative? She is allergic to dairy products but tends to fair well enough with goat cheese. We buy it locally in a recyclable tub.
  • The strange plastic wrap on the stem of bananas, particularly the organics. We avoided them this week.
  • The net around onions, which we bought over a week ago. We’ll keep it and find some use for it around the house (like a net for dryer lint for birds to pick at).

And then there are the things that we picked up when we are out in the world. A sushi dinner now requires us to stuff our chop sticks and their paper wrap as well as napkins in our purses. What do we do with them? They’re excellent food for our composter.

What we Took In

  • Jane’s coffee container, which looks deceptively like paper, bought at the bulk section at the Carrot Common. From now on we’re sticking with the bulk coffee at Noah’s. Noah’s bulk coffee is packaged in paper – with a thin plastic wrap. Not perfect but the best we can do.
  • The plastic wrap around cucumbers! Ugg! I bought such a thing last week without thinking. This week, I picked up a cucumber as God intended. Naked. Not wrapped in petroleum product.
  • I was merrily sipping away on a cocktail at a fundraiser and suddenly realized that a foreign petroleum non-recyclable straw was in my drink. I couldn’t really hand it back to the bartender. It’s in our one bag of garbage.
  • A tiny plastic strip at the bottom of a raspberry plastic container. The latter can be recycled. The former can’t. I’ve put an end to raspberries now that they are out of season.
  • The plastic security protector around the Cold F/X.
  • The packaging for pine nuts bought weeks ago. We used the last of the nuts and are stuck with the garbage.

Halloween will be a challenge. More on that next week.

In the News

Harper Government Suppresses Climate Report - Now Available Here
Remember when this happened? Don’t vote Conservative.

No comments: