Recycling and It’s Importance in Our Current World

Reduce, recycle and reuse. We’ve all heard the call. We know it needs to be done because it does affect everything around us, including us. However, we sometimes miss the reason for the importance of recycling.

What is Recycling? It is essentially converting waste into reusable material. Recycling requires far less energy, fewer natural resources and keeps waste from piling up in our garbage landfills.

What causes waste?

  1. Rising economic conditions makes it easier to buy products that ultimately create waste.
  2. Rising populations means more people create more waste on this planet.
  3. New lifestyle changes such as eating fast food, creates non-biodegradable waste.
  4. New products and technological products being developed contains many products that are non-biodegradable.

Why should we recycle? Recycling is important to the environment as well us;

  1. Recycling helps reduce pollution caused by the waste.
  2. Recycling reduces the need for natural resources, meaning our forests can be preserved a lot longer for the future generations.
  3. Using recycled materials means habitat for wildlife is not damaged.
  4. Recycling requires less energy, thus saving more natural resources for the future.
  5. Waste gets collected in garbage landfills, which currently are overflowing. Recycling helps, since there is less space for the waste in these landfills.
  6. Making products from raw materials costs much more than if they were made from recycled products, making recycling a financially viable option.

Still, why is Recycling important? Follow this example along for why, we need to recycle.
We all know that our oceans cover about 72% of the Earth’s surface. In the recent years, our oceans have become warmer, more acidic, oxygen deprived and most important – Polluted! Our waste in some form or the other eventually ends up in the waterways from our garbage landfills right into the Pacific Ocean garbage patch.

Non-biodegradable plastic materials end up in the stomachs of many sea life creatures {some fish mistakenly assume it is plankton}. Scientists discovered many plastic fragments in the stomachs of lanternfish. Lanternfish are the major food source of tuna and mahi-mahi, which in turn end up on our plates!

Over the past 26 years, glass, plastic bottles, diapers, food packaging, light bulbs, appliances, and many more items containing plastic were found during annual ocean cleanups. 80% of the products thrown away can be recycled, but only 28% are being recycled. In India, many cities do not encourage recycling, other than paper items.

What can you do? Plastic takes 600 years to degrade, meaning it will be around for a long, long time. To help the ecosystem, it’s best to start with plastic. Cut down the use of plastic.

  1. Carry your own bag, cut down on plastic bags and plastic papers.
  2. Recycling furniture or any wooden goods. Reduce and recycle wood products whenever possible.
  3. Going paperless, recycling paper are also good ways to conserve forests.
  4. CDs, DVds, Batteries, appliances, clothing can all be recycled. Find the recycling services you can use in your city to recycle these products.
  5. Encourage recycling among your friends, family and neighbourhood.

Remember – We cannot stop the pile-up of waste, however, we can HELP recycle! Spread the word.

Sources: oceanconservancy.org, greenfacts.org, conserveenergyfuture.com,

Are you Prepared?

We live in a world where the news is at our fingertips. Social media beats out news channels and papers in up to date and opinionated news. Everyone has an opinion, however, not everyone has all the facts. Half information is always a dangerous thing.

In our current climatic landscape with forest fires, earthquakes and other calamities, we need to be prepared. We need to know what needs to be done, we need to be quick thinking in those scenarios and that is only possible if we have the correct and complete information!

What is a ‘Disaster Emergency Kit’ and what does it contain? What do you do when you are trapped in a building during an earthquake? Or for that matter during a building fire? Some times timely intervention from the Government or emergency services is delayed and to survive and protect yourself and those around you, you need to remember these tips.

Be prepared, in this world, thinking ‘It can never happen to you!’ won’t help you when you do find yourself in one of these scenarios. Things happen that are beyond our control, and being informed is always a boon.

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Salient Points: Keeping copies of important documents outside of the home; having an out of town contact to coordinate with during a crisis; Do not spread rumours; Move away from falling objects, breakable objects, etc during cyclones/earthquakes/floods.

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Salient Points: Do not help injured/trapped persons – instead call for emergency services if you do not have training; As part of an organisation – network with other NGOs and government agencies to provide timely and appropriate distribution of relief materials; Make sure gender fair practices are carried out after a crisis as women and children are most vulnerable then.

 

The Way of the Marginalised

We live an age of ironies, that we are truly able to appreciate and challenge in the current climate. India, is a nation that exalts it’s women, because she is a mother, a daughter, a daughter-in-law, a wife. She single-handedly is responsible for the clothing, feeding and rearing of the household.

So the first irony in this well loved and taught fact is that a woman should not be educated. The marginalised communities find knowledge in the hand of a woman is a terrifying thing. Why terrifying, they are unable to clearly advice, but tradition in this aspect cannot be broken or taunted. A woman’s place is in the house, not in the classroom.

Education. The singularly most important need for any woman and child. For if she is educated, she knows better to care for her children. For if she is educated, she knows better to help clothe and feed her family. For if she is educated, she knows best about health and those for around her.

In fact to show these facts, studies have found in most African nations, a woman educated brings up a healthy child. She understands diseases, she understands nutrition and she understands immunisations.

If she is educated, she will know better her rights. If she is educated, she will finish her studies first before marriage. If she is educated, she will be self-sufficient.

And there in lies the crux of the matter. An educated woman would be in school, instead of getting married too young. An educated woman would understand her body more and thus decide if she wanted to fall pregnant again. An educated woman would be able to have equal opportunities for a job that her counterpart would be allowed.

And that is the irony, the woman who leads her family needs to hold true to tradition and stay in the house without education. Because, that is the way of the marginalised. . .

Do We Know HER Concerns in Today’s World?

The world today is moving at a faster pace. Socio-economic brackets have shifted, continents are closer; all this because of technological and developmental reforms. So really we are a lot more advanced, a lot more informed, and hence a lot more connected to every human being on this planet. However, though we have educated and ensured that more women’s concerns are addressed, we are not making too much of a dent in the advancement of the equality of the sexes.

Life is a lot more comfortable for your regular young person these days. Smart phones have overtaken the landline telephones – we know where, what or with whom a young person is with now. Constant electricity – that in the event of a shortage of power or perhaps a crisis, living without electricity becomes quite a drag. But these are all middle socio-economic problems, that are by no means a concern.

What truly is a concern is that the other young people do not have these extra luxuries we enjoy these days, in the urban and rural landscape. Smart phones are not that common there, neither is constant electricity. Then again, secure bathroom facilities are a rarity there, since houses are not built with a connected toilet. So what is the concern here? The fact that they don’t have the luxuries that the city folk enjoy? Or is the basic necessities that they are not afforded that we sympathise with and move along helplessly?

 A young woman in the rural area still believes she needs to follow the path set before her and not buck the hand that holds her down. A young man believes he has every right to exploit the women in his life, because they do not require respect.

The concern today is a very daunting topic. Do we know about the concerns of the young women in today’s world? Do we see their concerns? Do we hear more about their needs and the atrocities they face? Do we pass along the knowledge we have in an attempt to build a social movement? The answer sadly is . . . not that encouraging.