Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Microstory 933: Recycling

It would seem difficult to argue against things like renewable resources, and recycling, but people manage to do it. There are some issues with it; I would never claim it to be perfect. Solar panels can make the area hot enough to fry birds, that is, if the wind turbines don’t chop ‘em up first. Recycling facilities also pollute the air, which kind of defeats the purpose of them in the first place. But we should still invest as a society in environmentally-minded projects and technology. Just because something doesn’t work the way we want it to now, doesn’t mean it won’t be better in the future. People seem to think progress is based merely in time; that if you wait long enough, everything will be done. In reality, you have to work for it. We had to want to travel great distances faster in order to invent trains, cars, and planes. If oceans were made of lava, we wouldn’t build ships out of wood. We would instead try to figure out how to mould metal that won’t melt, or just skip right to aircraft. If we all lived on a tiny island, and had everything we needed to live happily, we probably wouldn’t build any transportation technology beyond the humble bicycle. We have to use crappy recycling techniques now so we can learn from our experiences, and one day come up with something better. We are presently a planet of trash. This trash was tossed out not only by our ancestors, but by us. And when I say it was tossed out, remember that there is nowhere safe for it to go. All you can hope to do is make it someone else’s problem, but that is not a very dignified way to live. There are a few people out there who benefit financially by keeping us the way we are, which is living in literal filth. They are generally old, and would sooner see this world die than give up their cash. They use their charm to convince people who are both poor and stupid that their open positions in destroying the environment are the only ones to be had. People like King Dumpster want you to rely on them to live. Because if you figure out that a couple solar panels, and a miniature wind turbine, can get you off the grid, and save you tons of money in the long-term, you might also realize that they do not have your best interests in mind. It’s negligibly harder in most regions—in this country, at least—to sort your refuse into two separate bins; one for waste, and one for recycling. There are many reasons to take that extra step, and so few reasons to not. Your descendants will live better, so that should be enough for you. If not, consider that you might be young enough to live forever, or long enough to personally suffer consequences of environmental disaster. (Side note: while hurricanes themselves are perfectly natural, the frequency, and increased intensity of them in recent years, are being directly caused by global climate change, which is being perpetrated by humans.) If you believe in an afterlife, I guarantee deliberately not recycling is not going to score you any points with whatever Flying Spaghetti Monster you worship. Unless you worship an evil being. Is that it? Are you a devil-worshipper? Those three reasons should encompass the majority of people living in the developed world, so stop listening to garbage people, like Donald Trump, and pick one. Reduce..reuse...recycle.

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