Oh, those Plastic Bags

Plastic Plastic everywhere
in the garden and in the air
its in our food its in the sea
in the stomachs of fish
and its in you and me!!

The plastic bag conundrum will just not go away. I have been keeping
tabs on the bans and alternatives but here we still are. Like changing
lightbulbs, changing to re-usable shopping bags, while still noble and
beneficial, is a drop in the very big bucket we call Earth.

There are biodegradable bags but they keep changing as scientists keep
discovering that even the new and improved bags that “biodegrade”, never
really bio-degrade. Then there are the bags that are made from food and/or
plant based sources such as: hemp, corn, wood and soy. These are surely the
best alternatives….but are they? Chopping down more trees, and using potential
food crops to apease our world of convenience instead of feeding hungry mouths. (?).

Here is a website called World Centric that is really trying to make a difference by
offering many positive alternatives that may help you live a more environmentally
friendly lifestyle. Their “Lifecycle” breakdown of their plant based products
verses conventional plastic products should be posted in every classroom across
the country.

Checkout Renewables at Home for lots of great info and articles about how you can be as green as possible at home.

The way I see it now, reducing and ultimately eliminating our weird dependence
on all things plastic, comes down to two things:

1. Composting – many people do it. Most don’t. That isn’t a judgment. Just the
reality, especially for the millions of people that live in townhomes and apartments.
But there are changes coming and they are positive. Composting programs are
being set up all over north america (in many places composting programs have been
going on for years). And more and more people are gardening or needing to garden.
So, their need and understanding of the composting process is blooming and booming.

The reason composting will help eliminate our dependence on plastic is simple – we
compost all the stinky food scraps so all that is left in our garbage can is “dry” stuff.
And most of that dry stuff, if it cannot be recycle, it can be disposed of without the
need of a plastic bag.

2. Reducing the amount of items you buy that are packaged. This is a real tough one.
Almost everything we by at the grocery store comes in some sort of packaging. And
it isn’t just the grocery bags that we need eliminate….its the taco chip bags, the frozen
vegetable bags, the bread bags, the apple bags, the potato bags…….its endless. I try to
buy as much unpackaged vegetables as I can and I bring in my own bags when buying
bulk items like rice, nuts, cornmeal, dried fruits, quinoa etc….and its usually cheaper
this way too.

I hope I’m not preaching here, and I know I am telling many of you what you already
know, and are doing already. But I hope I also am reaching those of you who need
an extra nudge to make the changes we all need to make so that we can stop
polluting Mother Nature with our billion tons of plastic every year.

The world is ours to wonder, not plunder.

Peace and grooves,

iain