I always wanted to reduce my carbon footprint but living in a flat in London meant it was almost impossible to do so. Now quite by accident and as a consequence of countryside living we have done so.
I remember as a child being sent to the green grocers with a shopping bag, a list and some money. I went home with a bag of fruit and vegetables and less money. Amazingly for the youth of today there were no other bags inside the shopping; the produce I bought wasn’t but in bags. All the produce was just loose inside the bag. With the advent of supermarkets we have gone packing crazy.
Back in London we seemed to be taking rubbish to the bins on a daily basis, now we struggle to fill our wheelie bin in a month. We grow our own fruit and vegetables; no packaging, we buy milk in bulk from the local farmer; no packaging, we make our own yogurt, sour cream and cottage cheese; no packaging; we buy meat in bulk; no packaging; we make our own syrups and juices; packaging recycled.
In addition to reducing our carbon footprint we also save money, because unlike in the UK you only pay for the number of refuse collections you actually want. We have just reduced ours to monthly and have just cancelled Decembers collection.
Now I know not everybody can live like us but I do think that supermarkets throughout the world could make a greater effort to limit the amount of packaging needed to take food home.
Totally agree. We pay for our plastic bags now! (Well I don’t … ) so when I buy a nice pressie or something delicate which I don’t want to get damaged I always ask them to wrap in tissue!! Or a paper bag! (Remember the cheap sweetie bag they put penny sweets in!) The shop keepers look at me as tho I am crazy. “no we don’t have any …. Sorry!” As well as campaigning for a 4 day working week for all, my next campaign will be bring back the cheap simple paper bag! (Or newspaper) ha ha!
Can’t agree with you more. I wish paid plastic bags in England will reduce waste. I try to buy loose, unpacked vegetables in London from markets and small shops.
We live in a 58 unit apartment bldg with only three bins which are emptied every thursday (which I think is pretty good actually!) but there is now a glass recycle bin which has helped immensly in that regard. I would love to see a paper & plastic recycle but the local kids (who I have christened “The Wrecking Crew”) would simply set it on fire.
But plastic bags are an issue as all garbage in the bins are contained in bags. And of course all that stuff goes into a landfill. At least the local Elvi uses those green enviromental bags that breakdown quickly. So quickly in fact that you sometimes don’t get home before the bottom falls out. Which is why I use a recycled paper/fabric bag.
Years ago there used to be an Italian outfit in Bulduri where you could bring your own plastic 1L bottles in and get them filled with wine & beer and there is currently a bar in Imanta that still does beer. Combine that with shopping at markets where the packaging is minimal & your carbon foot print will be greatly reduced. If you are an urban dweller. Who drinks a lot. 🙂