lauantai 30. elokuuta 2008


I had forgotten all about recycling while in China! Gosh. I came back to Finland, and threw some plastic bottles to the trash bin, before realizing that that is not the place for them. They can be recycled!

In Shanghai, everything we discard goes to the bin. One bin. There is no option for papers, cardboards, plastic, metal, glass, and so on. And at times, it drives me crazy. I felt like a bad person already in Finland, as I travel a lot (huge emissions), I am a firm believer of private cars (not a believer, really, but that is the way I behave!), and my habits as a consumer are not the most economic. I have too much clothes. And I buy more. And I eat a lot of read meat. And throw too much food away. And prefer to spend my vacation in a place that is not crowded, where too many people have not yet ruined the place, but is still waiting to be exploided (so new and new places will be taken to the altar of tourism for me and my congenials). And cannot deny that I could shower more quickly (but compared to the ladies in our residential Club House, maybe I am not as bad as I thought). Anyway, my environmental sin list is long. Looooong.

But now I even have to feel guilty for throwing everything into the same bin. There is even no deposit for any cans or bottles you buy, or place you could return them to. So, all this leads to the ridiculous point, that I am GLAD to see someone making an inventory of the carbage can, and taking into use all that can be taken into use. And there are a lot of people who seem to be collecting empty plastic bottles, for instance, so someone MUST be paying something for them.

However, the trash cans in our apartment building are not outside. I imagine they are in the garage, as I have never seem them (we have one in every floor, which the employees empty regularly). So, I have concluded that no one can take the advantage of MY trash. All of MY coke cans and plastic bottles and newspapers go to the dump.

So what am I to do? Should I start collecting my empty bottles and take carry them around the coty until I found someone who is interested taking them? Or if I have some old bread (which, of course, being both spoiled and picky, I am not eating) or let's say a left over from day before yesterday, should I take that too to the streets and see if there happens to be beggers that day? And would they accept them? Maybe. Probably, even. But that just feels... quite demeaning. So here I am, complaining I feel bad, but cannot do anything, because it feels a bit embarrashing...

Some things have improved, though. You get much more conscious of the water consumption, when you need to order the drinkable water by 10 litre barrel. Especially as I don't brush my teet with the tap water, I don't cook my spagetti in the tap water, and I usually flush the dishes with the distilled water. And after the Chinese government prohibited free plastic bags, I have tries to remember to take my bag when I go to the supermarket. Not due to the huge price of 0,03 euros per bag, but because if they are trying, I should try too. And because I've seen the river covered with floating plastic bags (and other stuff).

And they say it is more environmental friendly to live in a densily populated city area in an apartment building (rather than one family house). That, indeed, I do, Shanghai having average 2614 inhabitants per squarekilometer, our building having 38 floors...

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