But our waste problem is not the fault only of
producers. It is the fault of an economy that
is wasteful from top to bottom—a symbiosis of
an unlimited greed at the top and a lazy, passive,
and self-indulgent consumptiveness at the bottom—and
all of us are involved in it.
of our waste problem is to be accounted for by the intentional
flimsiness and unrepairability of the labor-savers and
gadgets that we have become addicted to. -- Wendell
appears to be a deeply embedded uneasiness in our culture
about throwing away junk that can be reused. Perhaps,
in part, it is guilt about consumption. Perhaps it also
feels unnatural. Mother Nature doesn't throw stuff away.
Dead trees, birds, beetles and elephants are pretty
quickly recycled by the system.
... if the society toward which we are developing
is not to be a nightmare of exhaustion, we must
use the interlude of the present era to develop
a new technology which is based on a circular flow
of materials such that the only sources of man's
provisions will be his own waste products. -
long as man was small in numbers and limited in technology,
he could realistically regard the earth as an infinite
reservoir, an infinite source of inputs and an infinite
cesspool for outputs. Today we can no longer make this
assumption. Earth has become a space ship, not only
in our imagination but also in the hard realities of
the social, biological, and physical system in which
man is enmeshed. In what we might call the "old days,"
when man was small in numbers and earth was large, he
could pollute it with impunity, though even then he
frequently destroyed his immediate environment and had
to move on to a new spot, which he then proceeded to
destroy. Now man can no longer do this; he must live
in the whole system, in which he must recycle his wastes
and really face up to the problem of the increase in
material entropy which his activities create. In a space
ship there are no sewers.
-- Kenneth E. Boulding
"Solid wastes" are the discarded leftovers of
our advanced consumer society. This growing mountain
of garbage and trash represents not only an attitude
of indifference toward valuable natural resources,
but also a serious economic and public health
-- Jimmy Carter
are not to throw away those things which can benefit
our neighbor. Goods are called good because they can
be used for good: they are instruments for good, in
the hands of those who use them properly.
-- Clement of Alexandria (150?-220?)
of colleges and universities have a recycling program."
--Colorado State University Recycling Program
is a good thing to do. It makes people feel good to
do it. The thing I want to emphasize is the vast difference
between recycling for the purpose of feeling good and
recycling for the purpose of solving the trash problem."
Mostly, I spend my time being a mother to my two
children, working in my organic garden, raising
masses of sweet peas, being passionately involved
in conservation, recycling and solar energy.
~ Blythe Danner
Years ago, we all talked about recycling and not
dumping things down your drain and all of that,
but talking doesn't help much. Basically, it's
going to have to be legislation because the impact
is so huge and diversified.
-- Ted Danson
greatest economic benefit of recycling is that it provides
a base of materials for robust, efficient manufacturing
industries. So far this decade, U.S. paper manufacturers
have voluntarily built more than 45 recycling-based
pulp and paper mills and only a handful that use virgin
wood. This is not just because recycling plants are
better for the environment, but because they are a less
expensive way to increase production, taking advantage
of the increasing supplies of used paper collected in
business and community recycling programs.
-- Richard A. Denison & John F. Ruston
ever-mounting glut of waste materials is characteristic
by-product of modern "consumer society." It might even
be argued that capitalism's continual need to find of
generate markets means that disposibility and waste
have become the spine of the system. To consume means,
literally, "to destroy or expend," and in the garbage
crisis we confront the underlying truth of a society
in which enormous productive capacities and market forces
have harnessed human needs and desires, without regard
to the long or even short-term future of life on the
-- Stuart Ewen
Pollution is nothing but the resources we are
not harvesting. We allow them to disperse because
we've been ignorant of their value.
Day - November 15
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