recycling

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legitimatebeef
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recycling

Post by legitimatebeef » Thu Mar 21, 2019 1:41 pm

I'd like to have a conversation about recycling. What it means to you. Lately I am very troubled by plastic waste and the sheer amount of it consumed by each person, and entering the ecosystem as waste. I am taking small steps to reduce, but I am also struggling with the futility and inescapability of it all. Sometimes I feel like, why bother. As long as I can live out my life, screw future generations. Sucks that they will have to deal with my garbage, but oh well. And so on.

I used to be naive and think that as long as I throw something in the recycle bin, I am not part of the problem, and/or I am somehow absolved of any guilt from being wasteful. Wrong. Most of the recycling bin is going to end up in a landfill anyway. Especially if you don't clean and sort it properly. But then a lot of items are just plain unrecyclable, like coffee cups and other mixed material shit. The solution, if there is one, and if it is worth pursuing, is probably more like cutting down on consumption. Like using a stainless steel water bottle instead of cracking open a disposable plastic one multiple times a day. Bringing your own shopping bags to the grocery etc. Personally I have cut down on ordering take-out specifically because I hate dealing with all the containers. People say they hate cooking and cleaning but that's bullshit. You cook with pots and pans and eat from plates and drink from glasses and when done you throw it all in the dishwasher. With take-out it's there's up to twenty pieces of plastic that all need to be cleaned up and dry before it can be recycled. Then I look at the big heap and feel like crap. All this plastic garbage just for one stupid meal.

I used to joke around about lying awake at night thinking about the gigantic swirl of plastic trash sitting in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, but it has become literal now. I think about it everyday. I am almost suspicious of eating seafood now, considering that most marine life eats plastic on a regular basis in 2019.

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DougE
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Re: recycling

Post by DougE » Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:33 pm

We're big recyclers. I can't take much credit though. My wife is the driver of it all. But I do recycle per the County's instructions and restrictions. And she would see to it that I do if I tried to turn my nose up at it otherwise. Hopefully we're making a difference. We also have a really well-managed recycling center, where everything must be clean and properly disseminated and distributed into specific areas. I have to say, the people in general here take recycling very seriously. I have confidence that our little corner of the US here does a good job on the recycling front. I do believe if everyone in the country recycled as we do here, the environment would greatly benefit. Now, if we could only get the rest of the world to do their part maybe we really could save the planet, or at least extend its life and hopefully the life of those who live upon it for a few extra years.

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jasonfish11
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Re: recycling

Post by jasonfish11 » Thu Mar 21, 2019 3:09 pm

I'll be the first to admit I don't do as good of a job as I'd like. Sure we recycle all of the cardboard/paper crap we use in our house. We get paper bags for groceries, and I can't remember the last time I drank water from a plastic bottle. We did buy 3 dozen bottled waters during hurricane season but over 2 dozen are still in our pantry.

What I do terrible with is recycling anything non paper. Every morning I drink a V8 energy drink in an aluminum can and throw it in the trash. I don't drink much soda so no plastic there, but I do throw out wine/beer bottles too (can you recycle glass?).

As someone who really liked to care for the ocean I'm pretty terrible with the whole recycling thing, and I know the sargasso sea is just littered with trash, which is pretty saddening.
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Re: recycling

Post by DougE » Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:19 pm

jasonfish11 wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 3:09 pm

As someone who really liked to care for the ocean I'm pretty terrible with the whole recycling thing, and I know the sargasso sea is just littered with trash, which is pretty saddening.
Having sailed dozens of trips directly through the Sargasso sea on my many trips to or from Bermuda and the Caribbean, I can confirm there is a lot of crap out there. It isn't overly polluted with crap in one specific area, but there is just random individual stuff floating out in the middle of nowhere. However, due to the currents, you'll come across places where it collects in big masses of floating crap in the center of spinning mini-eddys, sometimes 50-100 feet in diameter. Generally-speaking though, the Sargasso Sea, 500-600 miles offshore is generally pristine LOOKING. Sargasso sea weed is the thing you see floating more than anything out there.

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Re: recycling

Post by jasonfish11 » Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:21 pm

DougE wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:19 pm

Sargasso sea weed is the thing you see floating more than anything out there.
Yeah and that stuff is good to fish under.

Although I've never been into the sargasso sea, but I've certainly trolled along my share of weed lines. There is a lot of really tasty dinner under those weeds.
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bkuehn1952
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Re: recycling

Post by bkuehn1952 » Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:21 pm

Yes, the problem now is that much of what we toss in the recycle bin doesn't get recycled. Virtually no glass is recycled. Plastic is a big problem because of contamination. Same with paper and cardboard. The best solution is what LB mentioned, don't produce the waste in the first place. I never buy water in a bottle. I try to limit the glass containers we buy. I do the best I can to follow the recycling rules (no dirty plastic or paper/cardboard). Beyond that, I can't do much more and the grandkids will have to figure it out.
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legitimatebeef
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Re: recycling

Post by legitimatebeef » Thu Mar 21, 2019 6:41 pm

I've sort of eliminated paper goods from my worrying budget. I've never heard of an environmental issue due to cardboard waste. Glass I assumed is fairly recyclable. Maybe I am wrong. If so, glass waste doesn't really fuck up the world. Over time it becomes sea glass, which is ornamental and collectible. Anyways glass comes from sand, so who cares. It's the plastic that's poisoning us.
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jfurr
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Re: recycling

Post by jfurr » Mon Mar 25, 2019 11:58 pm

it is sickening the waste we produce. The new sad news is that much of this recycling we combine and send off is either not recycled after all because it is a) contaminated with non-recyclable materials in the batch, or b) not recyclable because it is less costly to mine the resources than to recycle them. :(
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Re: recycling

Post by jfurr » Tue Mar 26, 2019 12:02 am

^ Beef - glass is not recycled as much as you think. It is more costly to recycle than to make new glass. So it heads off to the landfill, where it might return to sand in 1 Mil years
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