No, I'm not talking about this ...
I'm talking about this ...
Hubby and I run an Eco Playground company, Yippy Toys using as much recycled material as we can and I'm trying to think of ways to improve my own carbon footprint. I'm not normally such a Goody Two Shoes but methinks this is important. The planet, our future, our kids future. No, really. Sadly for me, it's got to be easy and not remotely time consuming. If I can't fit it easily into my life then with all the best intentions, it just ain't gonna to happen.
Note - This isn't the first and wont be the last I'm sure UK/SA comparison on my blog. Sorry, I blog what I know right?
In the UK like with a lot of things, the Government kinda take over and do it for you. Zzzzz :) Each Council (like a Province) is rewarded by weight for how much recycling they produce each year. And guess what? Your recycling is monitored too and if you don't recycle enough, your Council bill will be higher than your greener neighbours. Oh yes.
Each house is issued with separating bins, one for non recyclable, one for glass, plastic, tin and paper and a rather lovely brown coloured bin with a lid for all your compost. Yes, the Government will take away your compost too if you let them. For use in public parks and gardens ... can you imagine?!! All my old eggshells and veg peelings .. yum.
The result was, as a UK resident, I'm left feeling a little flat about recycling. Like I've been instructed to do it by my Parental/Headmasterly Government and I'm making all the effort to separate into my bins every day just to make sure I don't get in trouble and suffer an increase in my bills. And that suitably coloured brown bin gets messy people you better believe it. Oh yes, and I'm recycling so the Council can earn some extra spending money. Which we're sure they'll spend wisely hey?
There's no attempt by the Government to encourage or show the public how to reuse anything yourself, just to make sure you hand over enough material for the Council in your area to make their quota. Okay, so we presume they'll recycle and reuse it all but it all feels a little distant and disconnected from me and my family.
Come on local Councils, why not send me a flyer teaching me how to make a Compost Bin from old tyres so I can feel more involved and use my potato peelings to benefit my own garden. If the Council needs a !!kerching!! financial reason to do it, then think of the money they'd save in collecting and processing it all. Rather teach us how to do more ourselves, recycling begins at home.
One of the great things about South Africa is the way it encourages recycling. Anybody can do it and anybody can be paid for doing it. And I see so much more reuse and encouragement to do so. Some of the art and craft it produces is way cool.
My Dad visited us for a holiday from Cyprus last year, and we all road tripped to Cape Town for a few days. We went into the Waterfront Craft Market and loved all this stuff.
Er, Dad? I've borrowed some of your pics .. k? K.