What's the cost of your convenience?
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This morning I caught sight of some headlines on a television about a proposed move by the Mayor of New York City to ban Styrofoam take-away containers in the city because they are impossible to recycle.
I do not want to dwell too much on this particular story as it is still developing; and the point I want to make is more about the ‘cost’ of convenience in our lives. Now, this is a very complex topic and there is much to be said about consumerist culture; the global economy and the actual environmental cost of certain products etc.; but I would like to focus on the individual and the choices we make in our lives and to ask you how prepared you are to give up some convenience for a greater good.
Take-away coffee cups; plastic shopping bags; kitchen paper towel; disposable razors; cans of lentils (as opposed to dried lentils); sandwich bags; plastic cutlery. These are just the few convenience items I know I am guilty of using and abusing on a regular basis. If I sat here thinking about it for longer I could probably come up with a list that is much longer.
I think it is easy to fall into the trap of convenience and to ignore the pangs of guilt when the thought of the impact on the environment starts to wiggle its way into your head. I also know that solving environmental issues requires a lot more than each of using fewer Styrofoam cups – governments and large companies need to take decisive action – but I don’t think that can be an excuse for inaction on the part of individuals either. After all, how can you stand and point fingers if you’re not making some genuine effort in your own life.
This morning’s news report has made me realize that I’ve been a little lazy these past few months and so bad habits have crept in and I need to nip them in the bud.
What are some of the convenience items that you have given up or are prepared to give up, and which can you not live without?