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We’ve all heard it before, “Reduce waste and cut down on trash.” For most people, this idea is kind of accessorial in life, one that doesn’t need much of their attention, but “why not” if it was easy to do. Can you really blame them though? I mean, our lives today are as hectic as they’ve ever been. There’s school, there’s work, there are social obligations and things to do, and all are to be achieved in twenty-four hours. We find ourselves at the end of the day trying to make sense of it all and trying to keep our sanity while managing to deal with the stress of being a human. The last thing we need is something else to worry about, right? Well, the answers to the last two questions are yes and no. Diminishing the amount of trash and preserving the environment has never been more important, and it’s a job for each one of us, even if it takes some effort. It is worth every bit of energy we still have, and I will attempt to explain why, how, and what we should we do.
Let’s start with the idea that the amount of trash being produced worldwide is too much for this planet to handle. People throw things away, but they don’t really know what happens to them. One might think that they’re being recycled or disposed of, but the truth is that the majority of trash is just being dispersed all over the globe, even if this happens accidentally. Waste is either broken down to extremely small pieces that we can’t see, or is moved by wind and water, ending up in oceans, forests and basically everywhere it can reach. This is aside from the horrendous event of landfills being destroyed by a natural disaster for example and trash then being scattered everywhere.
However, the main issue lies in our hands. People want things fast and they want them cheap; and this unfortunately means more stuff and worse quality. They buy what they want and ignore very important questions. What chemicals does this product contain? Is it dangerous to the environment? Is there an eco-friendlier substitute? The truth is that most people don’t care, most probably because they don’t see the damaging effects of trash very often except if it’s the ugly sight of garbage along the streets. I’m sure when they get a better picture, they can easily find the motivation for change.
We live on this planet that we share with other species. Why is it not considered selfish that we ruin every part of it for our own benefit leaving a mess for other living things? Is it the fact that they can’t defend themselves? Or is it just humanity’s never-ending need to drain the soul out of Earth’s resources? You may think that this is a bit dramatic, but I’m sick and tired of seeing trash pile up on the sidewalk, or seeing someone throw stuff out of her/his car. It is truly an infuriating act. People believe that this lasts forever, that they can do whatever they want without any consequences.
The reality is that we’re killing Earth and everything on it, including ourselves. Ecosystems are being destroyed each day due to our waste. Animals, plants, and the atmosphere are being affected in the worst ways possible. Moreover, our health is deteriorating, with many diseases showing up because of pollution. They burn the trash to get rid of it but end up polluting the air; they burry it but end up ruining the soil, which by its turn harms plant life; they throw it in the oceans but end up hurting marine life. It is evident that there is no perfect way to dispose trash. The best way is to minimize our production of waste by decreasing our use of products and being more aware our actions.
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