Water and Los Angeles: Part Five
So here is what I have learned from researching this blog series on how we source our water:
It’s time for us to re-think our water consumption here in Southern California. Because, really, we don’t or won’t have much of a choice in the not too distant future. I would bet that our State and Local governments would be telling us to conserve water already if it weren’t for Covid 19 and how tired people are of being told what to do. So maybe we should bow to the inevitable and start conserving water on our own.
A good place to start is to do a water use audit on line. This will help you to see how much water your household uses in a year. Here is a VERY comprehensive tool to look at your water usage: www.Wecalc
According to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, the average person in LA uses 140 gallons of water per day. About half of that is used for landscape irrigation. But really, this is just the water that comes into our home. Our total water “footprint” is much higher – about 2000 gallons per day – when you factor in the water used to produce our food, to create energy and to make the things we use. It’s a lot to think about. Sometimes I feel like my head is going to explode if I think about all the environmental consequences of everything I do. So, I prefer to start small, with things I can do in my house and garden to conserve water.
Here are some things you can do to decrease water usage inside your home:
*free aerators and shower heads are available if you are a LADWP customer. Go to WaterConservation@ladwp.com
Outside of the house, there are things you can do to decrease water use as well:
MORE ABOUT WATER LEAKS
Resources on Using Less Water:
Water and Los Angeles: Part Four
The other place we Angelenos steal our water from is the Feather River and the Sacramento/San Joaquin River Delta. Imported by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, this water is delivered to Southern California and San Francisco via the California State Water Project (SWP) and comprises 22 dams/reservoirs, pumping plants and 444 miles of aqueduct. The water is pumped 2000 feet over the Tehachapi Mountains to Los Angeles – quite a feat! The California State Water Project not only provides water, it generates electricity; it is also a large USER of electricity for pumping the water. 70% of the water from the SWP goes to urban Los Angeles and San Francisco, while the other 30% is used for agriculture.
So what are the environmental implications of taking water from these sources and re-routing it 500 miles to the south? Well, from what I have read, the effects on the environment don’t appear to be as devastating as they have been in the Owen’s River Valley/Mono Lake area. And the northern California rivers seem to be holding up a heck of a lot better than the poor Colorado River.
Here are some articles and websites to read about current conservation attempts in the Feather River watershed and in the Sacramento/San Joaquin River Delta:
Water and Los Angeles: Part Three
Water in Los Angeles is a complicated business. There are different water districts or agencies and individual municipalities that provide water for millions of people over hundreds of square miles. The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power provides 197 billion gallons of water per year to the City of Los Angeles (data from 2007 – 2011). Of those millions of gallons, 29 % comes from the Los Angeles Aqueduct (Owens Lake area), 12 % comes from groundwater and 2% is recycled. The rest of the water comes from northern California – 48% - and 9% comes from the Colorado River.
The 9% of City of Los Angeles water that comes from the Colorado River is distributed by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, a regional water wholesaler. The Metropolitan Water District provides water to public water agencies and municipalities throughout Southern California, from San Diego to Ventura. The Metropolitan Water District gets its water from the Colorado River and from the Feather River in Northern California, in addition to some local supplies.
Every water district in Southern California gets its water from some combination of local and imported sources. My district, the Rubio Canyon Land and Water Association, gets water almost exclusively from the Foothill Municipal Water District (a member agency of the Metropolitan Water District) November through April, and from the Rubio Canyon and well water for the rest of the year. If you are curious about where the water you use comes from, look at your water bill and go to the website of your water agency/association.
So I wanted to share with you some interesting and concerning information about the Colorado River. This is important if you live in Southern California, because water levels in Lake Mead are already very low….and that’s where a lot of the water we use comes from. It is anticipated that with climate change these water levels will sink even more. And we are not prepared.
Take a look at this series from Yale University about the Colorado River. These articles are an eye opener.
E360 SERIES - CRISIS ON THE COLORADO
Water and Los Angeles: Part Two
For years I have been noticing the Crystal Geyser bottling plant on Highway 395 on the Eastern slope of the Sierra Nevada mountains. The warehouse and the trucks are right there, with Mount Whitney looming in the background. Appropos of nothing, I am particularly attuned to this brand of bottled water because my 97-year-old mother refuses to drink anything else. Have you ever tried to get a 97-year-old person to change a habitual buying pattern? Trust me, save your breath! I feel such eco-shame every time a case of water arrives from the grocery store! I will write more later about the eco-brick project I have embarked upon to compensate for the ecological disaster that is my mother’s home.
ANYWAY….. Crystal Geyser sources it’s water from five different locations spread throughout the United States, and employs 300 people nationally. Family owned and operated, they pride themselves on being a “closed-loop” system that works hard to preserve the environment. They have a recycling plant in San Bernardino for their bottles and contribute to various charitable endeavors, including reforestation projects. Go them.
Sadly, all of these efforts and the publicity about their eco-mindedness fall pretty flat with me. There is NO NEED FOR BOTTLED WATER at all. Single use plastic is an ENORMOUS problem world-wide. I don’t care how much they recycle; think of the petroleum needed to produce the plastic, the energy required to manufacture the bottles and transport them, and the reality that nowhere near 100% of the bottles are being recycled. Add to this that all of this effort and energy is being spent on a product that is completely unnecessary. This is what is meant by GREENWASHING – talking environmentally conscious talk while continuing to produce a product that is killing the planet.
Here’s an interesting article that shows just how much Crystal Geyser cares about the planet; read this to learn about how they dealt with arsenic in the wastewater of their plant: https://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/crystal-geyser-pleads-guilty-to-illegally-storing-arsenic-wastewater/2288098/
And what about the water? Snow melt provides the majority of the water Crystal Geyser “harvests” from the Sierras. How is that justifiable? The Owen’s Lake is a toxic dustbowl, the ground water of the Owens Valley has been decimated by 100 years of water redirected to the Los Angeles basin, we have had years of drought in California recently and it’s pretty clear there’s more of that to come. CALIFORNIA WATER NEEDS TO STAY IN CALIFORNIA, in our lakes, streams and aquifers, not be bottled and shipped all over the place.
I don’t know anything about the legal issues involved in water rights. But it seems to me this would be a fight worth fighting.
Water and Los Angeles: Part One
This is my favorite quote from the late California Senator S.I. Hayakawa, referring to the United States acquisition of the Panama Canal. I don’t agree with the sentiment, but I appreciate his audacity in saying such a thing, even though I’m pretty sure he was joking.
The “We stole it fair and square” story is the same with the water we use here in Los Angeles. Much of our water is being drawn from distant sources. And the stories of how we got that water, and the environmental price being paid by the land, wildlife and people at the source is not very pretty.
I thought I would start with the water we are taking from Mono and Owens Lakes. Tucked away on the Eastern side of the Sierra’s, I have been driving by this lake and the river that feeds it for years on the way to skiing (well, the rest of the family skiis while I live the spa-girl dream) in Mammoth. North of Mammoth, at the turn off to Tuolome Meadows and Yosemite on Highway 395 is Mono Lake, another source of water for us Angelenos.
Here are some links so you can learn the stories about the biggest water heist in history.:
From personal observation over the past 25 years, it does appear to me that Mono Lake is “healthier” than it was in the 1990’s. The water level is higher, there are wetland areas, and flowing streams. YAY!
Owens Lake, on the other hand, looks pretty dismal. When we were there, a fierce wind was blowing a TON of dust over the highway and we had to retreat to the car to avoid being sand blasted. I hope to go back in the spring and walk around the trails to see if I missed something.
What is pretty clear is that restoring the Owens Lake to anything remotely like its past size is probably off the table, unless those of us who live in Los Angeles do something about our water use.
A few organizations that can help you decrease food waste in your home.
So…it has been a year since I started on the composting journey, and the results have been mixed at best. So far I have tried composting leaves, dog poop, and food. Here’s what I have learned.
I don’t know exactly what went wrong in the great leaf composting debacle of 2019 – 2020, but it wasn’t pretty. I have decided to throw in the towel, and instead of composting leaves I am now mulching them. This is working out GREAT! I bought an electric leaf mulcher, which is basically a weed wacker with a funnel feed on top, and a bag attached at the bottom. In 5 minutes, I can shred a barrel full of leaves! And they make fabulous mulch for the flower beds!!! YAY!!
The dog poop is disgusting, but after 4 months I have some real compost that is now worked into the soil of the future bee/butterfly garden in the front yard. YAY!!
Food composting has not been satisfying. Even after months, the food compost is not looking very compost-y. No matter how many YouTube videos I watch, I’m not getting it right. So I started doing some research to figure out what to do, and here is what I’ve found out.
Each of these organizations has a variety of different services and a unique mission, but all are striving to decrease food waste and restore the soil.
When I was in the working world, my professional life was all about children with special needs. And I frequently had to answer questions about diet and nutrition. In truth, while I had some minimal education about nutrition in school, most of what I learned came either from being on Weight Watchers most of my adult life (OK, without much long term success!) or from my own reading. I lived my own life for years as if Skittles and Ben and Jerry’s were 2 of the 4 major food groups.
I owe a huge debt of gratitude to the committed, amazing parents of the wonderful children I worked with for 25 years. Because of their concerns about the effects of pesticides and other chemicals on their children’s development, I went out and educated myself beyond what I had learned in school (which was pretty much nothing).
So I want to share two resources with everyone. One, which I have been using for years, is the Environmental Working Group’s Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen, lists of foods that their research shows should be eaten only if grown organically and those that are OK to eat without the organic certification. If you go to www.EWG.org there is a printable list for both. Some people feel that the EWG goes too far in its recommendations; personally, I’d rather be safe than sorry.
Yesterday I read the latest edition of Consumer Reports (October 2020) where there is an excellent article about produce and pesticides. I don’t know if you can access this article if you don’t subscribe to Consumer Reports, so here are the Cliff Notes:
TAKE HOME POINT – PAY ATTENTION TO THE PESTICIDES IN PRODUCE AND BUY ORGANIC WHEN IT COUNTS!
SO… HERE’S WHAT I’VE LEARNED FROM SLASH YOUR WASTE SEPTEMBER
Paper and cardboard recycling presents different challenges from steel and aluminum cans and glass. Unlike these materials, paper cannot be recycled indefinitely. As paper is recycled, the fibers in the paper become shorter and shorter. Eventually, the fibers become too short and can no longer be used in making new paper products.
Recycling paper has become more difficult in the past few years. For many years, China took the vast majority of American recyclables for processing. Then, a few years ago, China stopped taking our trash. I guess they decided they were having enough trouble dealing with their own garbage. Evidently, China was paying well for our garbage. When the Chinese market for our recyclables shut down, things were really a mess. Nobody would pay their prices, and there was a huge scramble for new places to send the trash. Things are still pretty messed up. And paper and cardboard are really a problem.
Paper and cardboard need to be clean in order to be recycled. They cannot be contaminated with food, or grease in particular. If a piece of paper or cardboard in a batch is contaminated, the whole batch is contaminated. And here’s the thing. In this country, we use single stream recycling. That means we put all our recyclables in the same bin. The potential for contamination of paper products is high when different materials are mixed.
According to Athens Services, the company that deals with our trash, cardboard and paper are being shipped overseas. This is because there are not enough mills for processing recycled paper in the US; the sheer amount of paper and cardboard we are sending for recycling has outstripped our capacity to process it domestically.
For the past 3 weeks, we have left our paper and cardboard out of our recycling bin to see just how much we waste we generate. WOW!!! It’s HORRIFYING!! The amount of cardboard and other paper and plastic waste from the things we are buying on-line is AWFUL! I know that with Covid we have increased our use of Amazon, but seriously! IT’S TIME TO STOP!
As the Covid pandemic has worn on – and on, and on, and on – we know more now about how people contract the virus. While my husband and I are both considered “at risk” due to advanced age (I am rolling my eyes in disgust), it does seem that it is pretty safe to go out into the world for brief excursions, as long as we wear masks, wash hands, etc. In truth, we have gotten so used to the convenience of on-line shopping, that it is hard to turn the clock back to an earlier time. I think it is safe at this point to be out in the world, of course paying attention to wearing a mask and avoiding crowds, and starting again to do routine shopping in person and locally that we have been doing on-line since the pandemic started. Carefully returning to pre-Covid shopping habits will help decrease cardboard waste and all of the other packaging waste and energy expenditure that goes along with on-line shopping and in-home delivery. Of course, this approach may need to change depending upon the guidance given by State and local public health authorities.
I am channeling Nancy Reagan here – words I NEVER thought I would write! – when I say that we are trying to adopt a JUST SAY NO! attitude toward on-line shopping in the interest of decreasing the cardboard that comes into our home. Wish us luck!
So what about www.plasticfilmrecycling.com?
I’ve always wondered just how trustworthy the plastic film recycling process is. First of all, and I know I’m going to sound like a conspiracy theorist, plastic film recycling is sponsored by various companies and organizations representing the packaging industry. Secondly, I haven’t been able to figure out the end market for this plastic film. Where does it go? Who uses it? As with most of the questions I’ve asked about where our recyclables go, I haven’t been able to find any answers.
Today I found an interesting blog posted by The Ecology Center in Berkeley. Check it out:
In short, the research indicates that this plastic film isn’t being recycled into much of anything – because there is no viable market for it. And that’s the problem with recycling. Everything we send for recycling CAN be recycled. But if nobody wants to process the materials, there’s no market and it goes nowhere.
It is becoming increasingly clear to me that we really need to re-think our attitude about recycling. For years, we were able to kid ourselves that recycling was profitable for the people collecting the materials. And it was – when we were sending our junk to China. But now, things are different. There is no reliable market for our recyclables. And there’s no place to send it that isn’t a moral disgrace. Sending our garbage to developing countries who do not have the infrastructure to deal with it is unacceptable.
So that means that SOMEBODY needs to pay for recycling our waste. Recycling is probably not profitable from a dollars and cents perspective. But it DOES profit the planet – and that ultimately means all of us. Either we the people – the consumer – or the manufacturer is going to have to foot the bill for dealing with recycling. My guess is that either way, Joe and Jane public are going to foot the bill. But really, what choice do we have?
The plastic crisis is real. Landfills are filling up with plastic that will never, ever decompose. The fish in the ocean are full of little tiny plastic pieces that we are eating. It’s everywhere. Continually making new paper from virgin wood destroys forests - a critical part of the environment that helps us all survive. And recycling metal and glass is more energy efficient and respectful of natural resources than manufacturing these materials from the raw ingredients.
SO IT MAKES SENSE – RECYCLING IS HERE TO STAY. BUT NOW WE HAVE TO PAY FOR IT. NOTHING IS FOR NOTHING, IS IT?
Bearing in mind that REDUCING the amount of packaging we purchase is critical, and that RE-USING what we can is in everyone’s best interest, I have found that there is STILL stuff that can and should be recycled. Here’s the story of how Olga and I stopped trusting our trash company and started doing our own recycling.
My friend Olga and I live in suburbia, in different communities. Both of our towns contract with a private refuse service rather than having their own municipal waste service. And here is where the adventure begins!
Olga and I both had large residential dumpsters for our refuse. We were told by the disposal company that there was no need to sort our trash; their facility had a state-of-the-art sorting system that would take care of that for us. We were told that they accepted plastic of all types! WOW!! They even had a video showing the process! Awesome. For YEARS I didn’t give this a second thought. We just chucked everything into our dumpster – trash, yard waste, recyclables - and that was that.
Fast forward to about a year ago when I started learning more about recycling. Every local municipality with its own refuse management has TONS of rules about recycling…no plastic bags, no plastics of specific numbers, no paper contaminated by food, cans and glass must be clean, among others. And I started thinking….if EVERYBODY else has these issues with recycling, why does the company Olga and I use NOT have these problems? Why don’t we have to do what Pasadena or Burbank does?
So, since enquiring minds want to know, and what the heck else do I have to do during corona lockdown, I called our trash company and asked some questions. Why don’t we have to clean our recyclables? What percentage of the glass, paper, plastic, metal collected are recycled? How many tons of refuse are collected from my town? How many tons goes to the landfill? Is the yard waste that is collected composted? And the answer to all these questions was – we don’t collect that data. When I asked if I could tour their facility, the answer was a swift, “NO!”
My next thought was that I would go into full investigative reporter mode and follow the trash trucks for several weeks to see if I could figure out what was happening. But going on a stake out has never really appealed to me – I like the idea of coffee and doughnuts in the car, but when and where do we go to the bathroom?
So Olga and I decided on a different course of action. We both started sorting our own recyclables into boxes in our garages – glass, paper, carboard, metal and plastic. Olga found a recycling place near us. And in August I went with her to take our recyclables to the center. Our logic is as follows – if they’re paying us for this stuff, they must be taking it somewhere where THEY get paid and are not paying the fee to dump it in the landfill.
In the course of exploring all of this, at our house we decided to stop using a dumpster and to use individual trash cans instead. We thought we would have a better idea of our waste output if we did a little sorting. And now that our yard waste isn’t mixed with trash, we are more consistent in using it for composting and mulch. And here’s the kicker – our monthly bill for trash is ONE THIRD of what it was when we had the dumpster!!! YAY!!
Olga and I do some other stuff too:
I have to admit – never did I think I would be collecting trash, sorting it, and taking it to a collection site. However, at least now I think there is a good chance that the stuff we are recycling may actually be getting recycled, instead of going to a landfill, which is what I suspect may be happening with our trash company. It is also clear to me now that while I thought we were recycling we were actually WISH CYCLING for years!!!
DON’T BE A WISH-CYCLER!!! TAKE A FEW MINUTES AND DO RECYCLING RIGHT!!!
IF YOU HAVE A MUNICIPAL RECYCLING PROGRAM, BE SURE YOU KNOW THE RULES FOR HOW TO RECYLE PROPERLY!!
When I first started researching recycling, I was so encouraged by what I was learning about aluminum and metal cans. Infinitely recyclable! Those were the words I was reading. YAY! At last, something we could feel good about recycling!
The truth is not quite so simple. While Aluminum and Steel can be recycled over and over without losing their integrity, there are some caveats.
Aluminum cans are generally recycled into cans. According to some of the research I did, the aviation and automotive industries prefer to use “new” aluminum in their manufacturing process. I don’t know that this is a problem, just an interesting thing to consider. Aluminum foil can be recycled too…the only issue is cleaning it first. I have seen it recommended to ball the aluminum up into at least 2 inch round balls for ease of handling at the recycling facility. I just found out that you can buy aluminum foil that is 100% recycled – there’s a win!
Metal cans are also a little problematic. I used to call these cans tin cans. In reality most food cans are made of steel and have a tin lining. The good news is that, like aluminum, these metals can be recycled indefinitely. YAY! All we have to do is wash them, put the lid inside the can and crimp it closed, and BAM! – recyclable!!! We don’t even have to take off the label.
But here’s a little problem. Some cans, instead of being lined with tin, are lined with a substance called BPA (Bisphenol A). This is especially true for soup cans. So why do we care about this? There are two reasons: (1) BPA can contaminate the recycle stream, and (2) BPA is felt to have adverse health effects. I’ll write more about this in another blog.
Aluminum is lightweight, making it less expensive to transport than other recyclables. But the cans still have to go somewhere to be processed and re-made into cans. From what I could see, most aluminum can re-processing facilities are clustered in Southeastern USA. I have e-mailed/called two municipal recycling centers and the private company that handles my trash to find out where the aluminum they collect goes – radio silence. I asked the same question about steel cans – silence. I sincerely hope the aluminum we use is being actively turned back into usable metal here in our own country, and not outsourced to Africa or Southeast Asia.
At then end of the day, aluminum beverage containers can be recycled, are recycled and should be recycled aggressively. But, as I always say, better yet is to really consider if that beverage or food you are eating/drinking is worth the environmental cost of the packaging.
So the take home is this:
I HAVE OFFICIALLY DECLARED SEPTEMBER OF 2020 “SLASH THE WASTE” month!!!!! My poor family! I am on a mission this month to better understand recycling, and to uncover more ways to reduce the amount of waste that we produce in our home. I have been reading and learning about zero-waste living over the past several months, and now it’s time for the rubber to meet the road. Although I don’t think our family can realistically achieve true zero-waste status, we can certainly do better. So I thought I would start by taking yet another look at recycling.
ARE YOU CONFUSED ABOUT RECYCLING? ME TOO!!! What to do and how to do it? ME TOO!!!!! I have spent the past few months trying to understand this process better, and I have a few more pieces of the puzzle put together. So here they are:
IF WE EACH DO ONE THING EVERY DAY TO CUT BACK ON OUR WASTE PRODUCTION – HOW GREAT WOULD THAT BE?!?
I’ll be writing in more detail about each of these plus other areas where we can easily cut down on waste here on the blog and on Facebook at Granny Goes Green.
I was so excited last week when I went to the grocery store! No, not because they still have senior hour in the morning! But because FINALLY we are allowed to bring our own shopping bags into the store! YIPEE! I finally feel like a morally upright person again when I buy food! It really feels like a tiny little win in the battle I have been having with myself about plastic use ever since the lockdown began in March.
But as I was doing my little happy dance on the way out of the store, I remembered something I read a while ago. Sadly, where I read it is gone along with the hard drive of my computer. But basically the author claimed that we as Americans have been the victims of a very long term campaign by the packaging industry to make us (consumers) feel that we have the ultimate responsibility for waste management – and here I am thinking predominantly of plastic.
Remember Iron Eyes Cody, that beautiful Native American man who was in the commercials for Keep America Beautiful? That single tear rolling down his face as he picked up trash by the side of the highway – what a powerful image.
The message was clear – it’s up to us to keep things clean and avoid waste. This totally ties in with the American ethos of personal responsibility in all things, personal freedom, etc. But is that really true? Yes, we can certainly not throw trash out the window of our cars – please. That’s just common courtesy! (My kids thought the back seat of our car was actually a trash can for years!) And yes, we can do our best not to buy plastic. But it’s impossible to be perfect with that endeavor. I have tried and tried, but no matter what we do around here, plastic sneaks in. Whether it’s containers for take out food, plastic film on a food item, or the packaging from food we ordered online during the pandemic peak…it’s hard to be a no-plastic purist.
I just took a peek at a movie called “The Story of Plastic” at www.storyofstuff.org. This was a fascinating view of the whole lifecycle of plastic – beginning to end. And my take away was this: Yes, absolutely we have to STOP BUYING PLASTIC PACKAGING to the fullest extent possible. And yes, where possible (and it is not very effective) we have to recycle the plastic we use (more writing on this soon). But there need to be changes at the level of manufacturing to curtail the amount of plastic being made. And it will probably take government intervention to get that to happen. And that intervention will need to be at the local, state and federal level.
I am not a political person. But what I have learned as we have strived in our household to live in a more environmentally sound way, is that lifestyle change is just not going to be enough. So I am compiling resources so that I can learn how to keep abreast of what’s going on in government with respect to environmental legislation. And I plan to start speaking up. Stay tuned; I’ll share what I learn!
It was a happy day two weeks ago when we welcomed our new fur-baby into our family! My husband and I had talked about adopting a dog for years, but had delayed because we wanted to be good pet parents. With both of us out of the house for 8 to 12 hours a day, it just seemed unfair to have a dog sit by him/herself for such long stretches. Our reluctance was increased by our desire to travel in retirement; so we never took action on our wish.
Fast forward to Covid-19. Both of us are now fully retired. Our travel plans are, sadly, on hold until at least 2021. So….it was a perfect time to adopt!
Having this not-so-little being in our home has been a delight. Oliver is (we think) about 18 months old and weighs 75 pounds. And man, does this doggie generate a LOT OF WASTE! Dog food cans and bags can be recycled, but what about – you guessed it – all of that POOP! Holy guacamole, I had no idea!!!
So here is what I have learned so far:
If this is too much, there is a system called Doggy Dooley that is it’s own little mini septic system. It requires digging a 4 foot hole and also needs well drained soil. I may try this if the composting is too disgusting.
I am just starting the poop composting experiment today because the compost is ready to roll. The composter is far away from the house, so that’s good. If this doesn’t work out, I’ll try the Doggy Dooley. I’ll let you know how all of this turns out!
I can’t believe it has been over a month since I have posted. The Covid-19 lockdown that we have been living here in California has really knocked the stuffing out of me. Every time I go to the grocery store (the one close by my house that has “senior hours” and wide aisles) and I buy non-organic produce, I feel like I am living a lie. When I use the store’s plastic grocery bags, my soul dies a little (even though I am saving them rather than putting them in the trash). It has been definitely harder living the life I espouse and aspire to.
So, after taking a deep breath, I have decided that it is time to start walking the walk again. Now that I am no longer fearing life altering food shortages or the complete collapse of all our essential infrastructures, it’s time to step back up to the plate.
So I’m going to start by sharing on Facebook the websites, blogs and articles that I have been reading that speak to ongoing efforts to restore our environment and live more eco-conscious lives.
I read somewhere that we’re all in this together, but we are all in very different boats. I think we all need to do what we can reasonably do in these very strange times; just try our best.
3 weeks ago, while walking on Colorado Blvd in Pasadena, I was approached by a young woman and 2 camera men. She asked me if I would consent to be interviewed for SinoTV about current affairs. My first thought, being the high-minded person I am was, “But I’m not wearing make up!”. Once we moved beyond that, the woman began asking me questions about Corona virus, and ended by asking me if I had a message for the people of China. Feeling the weight of responsibility speaking for all the people of the United States, I said something inane about hoping everyone would feel better soon, and hoping they were able to get the care they needed. I still feel pretty stupid about that experience, but I do want to share what that experience and this whole Corona virus situation has reinforced for me.
We got Trouble! Right here in River City! With a capital T and that rhymes with P and that stands for PLASTIC!!!
Did anyone guess when plastic first came into general use what an environmental disaster it would become? Who would have anticipated it? Plastic was truly a boon to our civilization, helping with all aspects of our lives and the economy. Space travel, advances in medicine - you name it, plastic was a part of it. It has become a necessary part of our lives.