Adidas with Parley have brought out some new sneakers made from ocean plastic. Should be water, shouldn’t it? We shouldn’t have to gather plastic from the ocean. The planet needs to get rid of plastic because as handy as it can be we are very bad at disposing of it and far too much ends up in the ocean. You’ve seen the fish. You’ve seen the videos. There are now attempts to put it right. I’d like to think these sneakers can be disposed of properly when they come to the end of their life. People are trying to solve the plastic waste problem now and there are some very good discussions going on which give me hope that eventually we shall solve this problem. Adidas is trying to find a good use for plastic recouped from the ocean. They cannot solve the problem alone but at least they are making an effort. There is another company making plastic bricks for housing. At best it really ought to only be used for disaster areas or areas which need quick emergency housing. Even though the bricks are supposed to be fire treated there is no proof as yet that they will survive hot sun and plastic fires are hideous. We need to keep talking about that one. Where there is a will…and it’s not as if we don’t have the brains and technology to solve these sorts of problems. The conversations are highlighting the issues. Firstly, we need to clean up our act. Secondly,we need to dispose of this plastic wisely. Thirdly, we probably need to forget about plastic. It has done more harm than good. BYFUSION explains the plastic brick idea on its site.The discussions around it are on The Insider Facebook page .
According to the information under the video clip: In 2009, oil wells around the world pumped an estimated 84 to 85 million barrels out of the Earth, and countries consumed just as much [source: EIA]. That is a lot of oil. We still have oil but it is difficult to access and is encouraging practices like fracking which come with all sorts of concerning problems. It also has meant difficulty negotiating with areas of the world where the oil is because we are so oil dependant. Not having oil would impact on industry, the military, transport, electricity, asphalt, production of plastics and polymers, agriculture. It would create job losses. We pollute the planet so much because of oil but we seem to be locked into a mindset which says we need it. We won’t necessarily go backwards without it. We have the capacity to think our way through and find other fuel options which are more planet and lifestyle friendly. We also have the capacity to rethink our lives so they are not so oil dependant. Do we need all that plastic? Do we need to fly everywhere? Do we need to transport our food huge distances? Can we get to places without our car? That can be a hard one if we are leading busy lives. Public transport can make the day so much longer and , in some places, it is not an option. If you start work at 4am in Adelaide there are no public transport options. Public transport times and efficiency would have a big impact of how many cars we have on the road. People ought not to have to have a car in order to work. There are also implications within all that for personal safety . These are difficult problems but not beyond our bounds for resolving if we think about it. I haven’t yet heard any defence of leaving the oil in the earth because maybe the planet actually needs that oil in the ground as part of its survival mechanism. There is always an assumption we can take things out of the ground in vast quantities and it means nothing to a living planet. We don’t just need to think about oil consumption, we also need to think about preserving the place we live. It always surprises me we do things just because we can and then don’t think the process through properly so we look at implications and effects. It’s not rational to behave like that. We can do better and we could come up with things which suit us and our environment. Why not?
The Living Smart program started in Western Australia and has been well loved and well endorsed. It has made a difference to how people perceive sustainability and the environment. It has managed to allow people to see that working together as a community preserves an environment for the future as well as allowing an opportunity to live in a healthier more welcoming environment. There is a disconnect between the people who just want to make their money and run and those who want to be part of a growth mindset which enables us to live healthily and well on this planet for generations to come. The short term , quick reward approach is hard to counter since people find it very hard to resist riches and money. It is also really hard when working conditions make it so hard for you to relax and have free time. You just want to survive and follow the path of least resistance which largely means ignoring your footprint on the earth. Living Smart has allowed people to take a step back and get rid of the fear and procrastination and just do: find out that networking and being with others is how you manage some of it, if not all of it. We now have this course in South Australia at McLaren Vale, Unley and Glenelg. I have been lucky enough to be in the McLaren Vale course and already I can see I am in a room full of people with ideas, experience, a nice way of being and that invaluable attribute of enthusiasm. It’s that enthusiasm which forges a positive road forward in terms of sustainability and the environment. It’s not an alternative. It is. It is, because you can see and implement the options and find a way of doing that so that others can do it. I grew up in an Australia which cared about the land and knew so much about natural environments. We were then submerged in suburbs but that connection with the land is unstoppable. It is now burgeoning as ecoburbia.
“The probability is that something like 8 per cent of these impurities will get through, and that is assuming the system is working properly.”
There must be a way we can recycle sewage and make it safe and not so expensive. Other countries do it and they use it in different ways. I don’t want it for drinking water. I really am not convinced it is safe and this article doesn’t convince me it would be safe. It seems to be very expensive and the article is a remainder that we do need to look at water reuse and we do need to get so much better at it. We have been installing rainwater tanks and underground storage in some new buildings. We have had mixed messages about grey water and we are reluctant to mess up the soil salts. We need better technology and advice with regard to grey water. it also needs to be simplified. If you keep it simple we can all manage and get better at it. We are not helping ourselves by having 19th century practices in the 21st century. We are getting ideas, but they are costly or not quite ready to be put into practice. It just cannot be done in an ad hoc way.