Friday, April 27, 2007

Eco-friendly, my ass!

D Sr took the day off today. We planned all kinds of family fun and tried to intersperse a few chores in there. One of the chores was to visit the Eco-Station.

The Eco-Station in our fair city is where one brings things like used computers, electronics, batteries, paint, etc. to be recycled. It also has a ton of huge bins for more “regular” recyclables like plastics, paper, cardboard, etc. Some items that you bring you are charged a fee for and some you are not.

We had quite a bit to recycle - lots of stuff from D Sr’s computer and electronics graveyard and a ton of books that I convinced my grandma to give to me to recycle rather than go straight into the garbage at her place. These books had no intrinsic value whatsoever (you know things like the 25 volume Time-Life encyclopedia set on lawnmowers published in 1964).

When we got to the Eco-Station they took our computers and electronics for free, but actually refused the books unless we ripped all the covers off the 100+ plus hardcover books that were in our van. D Jr was whining and sniveling after a long day, so we were irritated and incredulous. Here we are with over 100 books and they refuse to recycle them. When we told the oh-so useful help that there was no way in hell that we were ripping the covers off all those books she told us “they just have to go in the garbage then.”

What the $%^%$?!

How is this “eco” anything? This is the acceptable environmentally sound response that my tax dollars (yes, my tax dollars – I’ve been a homeowner for 6 years) pay for? The staff at the “Eco-Station” are telling us to dump all this recyclable material directly in the garbage?! Moreover, when they receive stuff like this unsolicited they toss it in the garbage themselves.

In my opinion this is where David Suzuki and all his cohorts completely lose Joe Q. Public.

First, if I want to be a good citizen and recycle dangerous goods like batteries, electronics etc. I have to DRIVE out of my way, on my own time, and possibly pay a fee for the privilege of doing so. I can completely see why people just toss stuff in the trash. My aging grandparents, for example, have never recycled anything in their lives other than of the “reuse” variety. Is it a shock?

Second, for items that are entirely harmless, yet recyclable (books for Christ’s sake!) if I don’t toil over them, they will just get thrown it. Utterly ridiculous.

If it’s not easy, most people are not going to do it. Am I wrong?

If recycling, buying green, and employing green practices in the home remain expensive and inconvenient then people are just not going to buy in.

I care and I want to buy in.

But for some reason, I have over 100 books in the back of our minivan that I’m pretty sure are ending up in a landfill somewhere.


At 8:01 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

They are opening up a Reuse Centre in Edmonton (in July supposedly). I guess you can donate books, craft supplies and stuff that schools and daycares and community centres could use (to cut up for collages I guess). The information I have been able to find is scant but I am holding on to my box of books for recycling/reusing until then.

I do agree with you that it is lame that they would remove those books from the recycling bins. There is certainly something wrong with the system. Speaking of Suzuki did you see him confront John Baird - it looked like something off of This Hour Has 22 Minutes.


At 1:11 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, I noticed that you are reading "White Teeth". I loved that book. LOVED it. I just finished "On Beauty" which I also enjoyed but, really, it's no White Teeth. Just thought I'd share. Hope you have an S.N.O. this weekend! a.

At 11:38 AM , Blogger Momily said...

I read White Teeth years ago when it first came out and I loved it so much then that I think almost everyone I know received it as a Christmas present. I jusr re-read it for book club and while I still enjoyed it, I did not love it as much as last time. Particularly the ending. . . but if my book club ever meets I will rant about it then and there!

At 1:09 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dearest Momily,

I admire your desire to be a part of the change and actually buy into the "green"-thing. Unfortunately, I think recycling books is the least of our worries. Think Homer Simpson and Mr. Burns in your backyard!!! Yes, Nuclear is here and Whitecourt (only 174 km from Edmonton) is the "perfect" place! Thank you MLA Vanderburg! RADIOACTIVE IS ALL THE RAGE IN ALBERTA!!YEAH!!

At 7:13 PM , Blogger Momily said...

I agree - my efforts are a drop in the bucket in the grand scheme of things. However, if I make an effort to put my drop in the bucket after being guilted in to it constantly, then they should take my $@#%$# drop, no?

As for Whitecourt as the new nuclear power centre - well, how cool will it be to be able to roast marshmallows just by opening your window?!


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