Thursday, June 26, 2008

When elsewhere is here....

The Gray Lady has an article about the new trash laws that are being imposed in Britain about how much and how often you are able to take out the trash. I personally hate taking out the trash, so only being able to do it twice a month seems fantastic. But then again, I try not to create too much trash. Britain is imposing these restrictions because they are running out of landfill space. A history of poor recycling has led to this situation. Contrast this with the Japanese who take categorization of garbage to new heights.

I've spoken about externalities in the past, but this is really a case of making your problem someone else's. As long as my garbage ends up elsewhere, then I'm fine with making that garbage here. But simple geometry tells you that if you keep on filling elsewhere, some day it'll end up here. And here is now.

Now you must be asking, well the world's been around for a very long time, then why hasn't it filled up? Well that's because the that nature makes, nature takes back. We call it the carbon cycle. The question is what make makes, nature often cannot take back, so it gums up the system. What man makes, does man take back? Right now no. The notion of a disposable society may need to be replaced by a decomposable one. Since decomposition is nature's recycling strategy.


At 6:18 AM , Blogger hmd said...

We only put out one trash bag every 5 weeks, so I would be totally cool with not having trash service every week. Some of our neighbors put out 2 full trash cans a week (that has to be about 10 bags a week - A WEEK!).

Maybe less service would make people think more about what they toss. And it would help the city with gas prices since trucks wouldn't go out as often. Sounds great to me!


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