We live in deplorable conditions and find others or the situation to blame. That cannot result and real movement or shift. We have to understand the situation and play our parts as responsible citizens for this beautiful planet where we have been blessed with time.
You Reap what you Compost
We are all aware that our municipal systems leave a lot to be desired. There are places in the world today that have actually run out of garbage and are buying the same. There is no reason why India cannot do the same. It basically needs a shift in mindset and a strong enough movement that enables the government to see that the citizens will work towards better living conditions.
We are all part of the modern, convenience based eco-system where we are huge on consumption and that consumption at times comes without enough thought on where stuff comes from and where it goes when disposed.
We can do a few simple things that would make a huge impact without making a big inconvenience for ourselves:
- Buy Bulk: Shun packaging as much as we can. We still have the large ‘kirana’ stores in our country that store thing in bulk. Most of our basics can come from there. We can easily carry stuff in our own bags or re-use plastic bags. This also results in larger stock and hence fewer trips to the market. What I also realise bulk packing enables us to eat healthier as we are buying less snacks and processed foods.
- Carry a bag: It is so easy these days as we get wonderful design of bags that can be cinched. I usually have one hanging by my backpack at all times and it comes in truly handy whenever needed. This enables us to avoid getting single-use plastics into the system
- Segregate garbage into at least two categories: It is ideal if we can deal with each waste separately but even if we can just separate wet and dry waste it makes such a huge difference. This does not take much effort at all. We just need to put a wet dust bin in the kitchen where all the food waste goes. Rest of the house will mostly be dry anyways.
- Invest in and use a Bokashi based system: These are super simple bins for wet-waste. We just have to have one in the kitchen. There are various companies that provide different models. We use ‘Trust Bin’ which works just fine. All you need to do is put the daily wet waste and then sprinkle some bokashi (catalyst) and the stuff keeps composting. We need to have a pre pale as once it is full it has to be kept away for 15 days. You get both compost tea (liquid) and compost that can be used either at your home for plants or given/ sold to someone else who is gardening- believe me they will love you for it as they see the quality of their produce change!
- Make friends with rag-pickers: Our country is still surviving because of this mobile community of amazing people. They either collect dry waste from your home or I am sure they would have a small shack community somewhere near you. Start providing them with all your dry waste and they will at least sell whatever can be used before disposing the rest.
When we do the above we will end up significantly reducing our impact. If we are currently disposing all our waste, we will actually end up contributing with less than 5% to the landfill. This is huge and if you see the quantum of effort it is absolutely minimal.
All we need is a slight shift tin mindset and take responsibility for our beautiful land.