Infinity made me see it!
A few months ago I came across a series called ‘the politician’ based on an ambitious young man who dreams and works very hard to be the future president to the united states. As he chooses ‘a greener and better tomorrow’ as his campaign motto he is campaigned in this noble cause by his friend infinity. Enters infinity, as unique the name the same is her lifestyle of hers -the zero waste lifestyle. For infinity it started when she on a fine day realized that she on her own is responsible of creating 4 large garbage bags worth of waste in a week. She on realizing this realized that the waste that she has created is mostly plastic and is going nowhere. She quoted this by saying that- ‘we humans have only one place in the entire universe to call home and we are trashing it.’ She on giving it a deep thought decided to minimize it and after a few months ultimately led a zero waste lifestyle. She was surprised when she realized that within the span of 3 years all her waste hat she generated could fit in a tiny mason jar, now how cool is that!
On watching this particular scene I was intrigued by the idea and researched a bit about ‘zero waste’ and to my surprise I came across so many communities who are actively trying to minimize their waste and encouraging people to try the same. All they did was follow they ‘3R’ system which is-recycle reuse and reduce, everything is done so mindfully and somehow while I was watching the videos which showcased their experience I thought to myself this doesn’t sounds as intimidating as it did at first. All that’s needed is a little thought before we put our hands to buy or throw things in the trashcan.
While I was rummaging my mind around reducing my waste , I quickly saw around myself and realized that my household like any other typical Indian household id already following the ‘3Rs’ unknowingly – we carry around a cloth bag for groceries, our milkman pours our daily milk in a vessel, we re -use any empty plastic or glass bottles around, we cook our food daily so that cancels out the takeout containers, and even when there is gathering or a party at my place we give out food in steel utensils, my mother has a garden so all the food waste goes in the compost. So are we on the right path and are we doing things right – I thought about it and answered yes to both these questions that yes most Indian households do take responsibility for their own waste up to certain point, the things that are thrown out can be mostly recycled like any food packaging, or electronic devices given that the recycling bins are at accessible points.
A average human per day is responsible for around 2.5kg of waste and to add a more severity to this most of the waste consist of non biodegradable material. Now what is this fuss around waste management and why are so many people around us insisting on it. Well not only this waste filing our landfills to the brim but also our oceans. Imaging while eating some chips from a plastic packet you somehow accidently swallow a piece of the plastic wrapping, anyone in such situation will end up in a state of panic and contact a physician out of concern for one’s health. Now imaging thousands of marine animals accidently swallowing significantly large amount of plastic unknowingly which will at some point create issues and ultimately lead to their deaths. Marine animals are not only facing deaths because of swallowing plastic but also getting struck in large ropes of plastic and dying of chocking. And to think we are the ones responsible for all this hardships faced by these innocent animals is troubling.
I might have painted plastic as the villain in the last few lines but I personally don’t consider plastic to be the protagonist here but rather a hero who has ,made so many things in our lives simpler and helped humans to conquer marvellous heights. But as any discovery in the right hands is a boon and in the wrong a bane, plastic is undergoing the same state these days. And the wrongs hands are many and they don’t even think about it twice while carelessly throwing an empty bottle of shampoo in the trash and opening a new one or unnecessarily wrapping gifts in plastic papers ultimately to throw them away, disposing a plastic toothbrush every 2 months in the waste can so many actions that seem innocent enough are at every minute changing the face of our earth.
In our vastly populated country there are not enough landfills to dump our trash in if we continue generating waste in the same way as we are today. Each and every citizen of India should be educated about and held responsible for the waste they generate.