By Rachel Gregg, executive director of the Big Sky Film Institute.
Originally published in Missoula Current, February 7, 2020.
Where in the world did the phrase “throw it away” come from, and where the heck is “away?” It’s a clever turn of phrase, really. One that makes us think the act of putting something in a bin keeps things in order, sends items we perceive as waste into some invisible abyss.
It’s easy to feel absolved of any wrongdoing with a system that feels relatively tidy when we allocate our waste to one place.
In reality, there is no abyss, it doesn’t disappear. One report I read recently estimates that as a result of “the growing crisis in the U.S. recycling industry precipitated by the closure of China’s market to materials recovered from other parts of the world,” the U.S. will run out of landfill space in 15 years.
Meanwhile, countries in Southeast Asia are struggling to dig out of the piles of “recyclables” that amassed before they began rejecting shipments of waste from the west….Read the entire article at missoulacurrent.com.