How will we change the waste problem?
WE HAVE TO MAKE A BUSINESS OUT OF CLEANING OUR PLANET FROM THE WASTE PROBLEM!
Investments have to start flowing into the right directions!
The climate change topic popped up a long time ago. I remember well the initiatives about even worse greenhouse emissions through gases in sprays, being identified for causing the atmospheric ozone leak when I was a kid in the 80s.
Then the waste problem was not getting too much awareness. The world was not global like it is today. Plastic was the driver of our wealth and just becoming the solution to everything in our consumption-driven society.
Waste was still not considered as the big issue it has become over the last 40 years of my life.
Society came out of world war 2 and was starving for wealth. Consumption started to arise through the new possibilities of the 3rd industrial revolution.
The generation of my parents, being born in the time of world war 2 still used mostly natural products when being kids. Electricity was still far away from being mainstream in all households.
Since then, their generation and my generation mainly caused pollution and waste on our planet. We introduced this consumption craze to the next generations, leaving them without a Joyce.
Don’t you feel a responsibility?
Switzerland as one of the most wealthy and developed countries in the world started to become aware of the waste problem very early on. Due to our wealth, we had the possibility to install industries to clean part of our environment.
Some of these concepts include the following
- Lots of trash cans in the public to avoid a dirty environment
- Burning trash and filtering smoke
- Cleaning the wastewater and installing sewer systems
- Educating about how to keep the environment clean
- Providing a strong public transport system
There was a time here in Switzerland in the 70s, 80s when rivers and lakes have been polluted completely and it caused the generation of my parents to get active.
The generation of my parents also became aware of our unhealthy treatment in farming through pesticides and the bad treatment of our breeding animals. They helped in creating a more natural way to grow our food and breed animals on farms. Several labels like „Bio“ have been created at the time and a more sophisticated control system for the agricultural products was installed. It was the beginning of what we call organic these days.
I remember when I was a kid we spent all the holidays in the mountains and there was a big waste deposit just one village away. I don’t know if it still exists or if the community implemented a different solution. When I see the waste deposits around the world I remember this deposit and I think, we all know, we have to find a solution for the waste we create.
We still haven’t figured out how to handle atomic waste here in Switzerland but there are initiatives by the government, looking for solutions to store it safely and sustainably underground. A bit challenge!
I think, there are many concepts tested and available here in Switzerland that can be implemented and applied around the globe while we still are lagging behind when it comes to banning plastic from our lives by replacing it actively through other materials. There are many ideas evolving around the globe how to produce all kinds of things to replace the plastic equivalent.
A talk with my sister’s husband made me think. As a chemist, he claimed to take care to not lose the bigger picture and just demonize plastic. As long as we take care of reusing it or burning it correctly, also taking care of the emissions in the destruction process, it is still the most efficient way to handle lots of cases of packaging. By producing and using other new materials that can be destroyed environmentally friendly, we need a lot of energy from carbon-driven energy plants, so we just shift the problem.
Same as with climate change I see just one solution to the problem.
We have to make a business out of it!
- We should educate and grow awareness around the globe about the waste problem and its severity.
- We should prioritize and value the research to find ecological substitutes in all different areas where plastic and other toxic products are used.
- We should grow attractive business opportunities for those who currently help cleaning on a voluntary basis and we could possibly help to get rid of a big part of the poverty at the same time.
- We should install systems to make sure plastic is not transported by wind and rivers anymore.
- We should take care of our wastewater first of all in the major cities besides the sea and spread it to all cities and villages around the globe.
- We should make sure to keep the few still existing rainforests alive by empowering the nations, where they are located to save them. There are possibilities to use drones for surveillance of these lands and use them for seeding new trees in areas where deforestation already happened.
- We should control the trade of precious woods and endangered animals and identify criminals who act against these initiatives.
- We should empower those who actually do something already and help them with their initiatives by shifting investments into the entire value chain.
- We should pressure the investors to shift their investments away from those companies who still give a shit about the environment.
- We should educate producers mainly in China but around the globe to become aware of the need to change the entire packaging.
Lately, there have been many attempts worldwide to tackle the big issues concerning waste.
In India and some other countries, plastic is completely banned.
A plastic bank pays people to collect plastic. The collected plastic can be delivered at certain locations in Haiti and Brazil, while those who collect it get paid for it.
Some startups are working on solutions to clean the big waste islands floating through the oceans.
People start to install dams in rivers to stop the waste floating into the lakes and sea.
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We are afraid of robots and the tech revolution but I see it as the only chance we have, to get these problems under control and clean up the mess we are creating.
We have the knowledge to tackle almost any problem and through the internet, we can push networking of the most intelligent brains on our planet forward to figure out solutions.
Just, currently most of the brainpower in our society is working at big capitalistic enterprises to find ways to generate wealth in a wall-street game, while we should get them out of these useless tasks and give them reasons on a financial basis, not just on an ideological level as volunteers, to participate in this urgent task of cleaning our planet.
The most active source I found online, covering all these new attempts to tackle the problems in our society is the World Economic Forum WEF and their entire initiatives in social media and through their newsletters.
The WEF does a great job by releasing their posts in the social media and through their newsletter! I can just recommend to anybody!
Subscribe to the newsletter on the WEF website
We need more of these sources, many more!
#waste #plastic #climatechange #technology #AI #leadership #WEF