aseptic cartons are one of our primary sources of non-recyclable, non-reusable rubbish.
This awareness is a blessing though, even if I do say it was simpler back then. Ignorance is not bliss, not really anyway. It is just a classic example of the not-in-my-back-yard approach to living. The garbage still exists and must be dealt with regardless of whether consumers are aware of this fact or not. There is a nauseating amount of plastic floating around in the ocean, strangling sea turtles and choking albatrosses. Convenience seems to be valued above all else. This bums me out, but I wouldn't go back to my ignorance.
I, for one, want to be conscious about how my choices impact natural resource use. Earth Overshoot Day last year was on August 2, 2017. That means we borrowed from future generations for an entire third of the year. I am not okay with that. We can do better. We need to do better. It is clear to me that our cultural values and priorities require some reflection.
Resource management is tricky, I realize. There are a lot of factors at play. But there is certainly some low hanging fruit, if you ask me, especially for my fellow first-worlders. This includes boycotting plastic drinking straws and throwaway plates/cutlery, for example, and demanding (through both our spending habits and our voices) a move away from the excessive packaging of most consumer goods. It can be done if we decide it is important enough.
Example: The Mesa Verde souvenir patch was adhered to a plain, unbleached square of paperboard with two small staples. Meanwhile, the Great Sand Dunes patch was adhered to a glossy paperboard square with three globs of sticky elastic goo and then the whole unit was further secured inside a plastic wrapper.
|A Gold Star for Mesa Verde's minimalist packaging.|
It strikes me as total overkill for a souvenir patch in a teeny-tiny visitor's center though.