After last week's post and thinking about the Tim Horton's "Please be a good neighbour and don't litter" sign, I decided to do my part in not even creating litter/extra garbage in the landfill this past week. I did this by not bringing any lunches (4 during the week) to classes that had garbage. This was easy to do because I brought homemade food, salads and sandwiches, as these foods from home can easily be put in reusable containers. But I also recognize the packaging that prepared leafy greens, bread, sandwich meats, etc. require. Also, I only bought one McDonalds coffee as oppose to 5 most weeks, this is a mini success!
While writing this I am considering taking the challenge to reduce garbage as much as possible from my lifestyle. Unfortunately, I was quick to make up excuses to get out of that. Is it possible to completely reduce garbage that is not biodegradable? In addition, my family and I have composted for years, which I just connected to my pledge! This is a small scale way to be an engaged citizen. Although, it's ironic because my family composts to mix the compost soil with our garden soil in the spring, so there are still Western, selfish reasons for reducing litter/not. I wonder, is "waste" considered natural items or manufactured items only?
This week my sister wrote a Biology 30 report about how marine pollution, as a type of litter, affects dolphins in oceans. Reading it for what seemed far too many times while editing and revising came in more useful than I thought. I learned that pollution (chemical and debris) affect wildlife by biomagnification. This refers to when toxins get more and more concentrated at each step of the food chain, and since dolphins are high up on the food chain, they ingest higher concentrations of these toxic substances, it is the process of toxins transferring from predator to prey (Flora Richard-Gustafson, 2017). This doesn't seem to be something that I can really help with directly at this point in my pledge, but it was interesting since I've been focused on this pledge every week and looking at things from a variety of perspectives.
I'm looking forward to expand on my learnings even more regarding my pledge next week when I lead a seminar discussion.
Richards-Gustafson, F. (2017). How Does Pollution Affect Dolphins?. Retrieved from http://education.seattlepi.com/pollution-affect-dolphins-4774.html