Waste in General

Nature doesn’t create waste. In its 3.4 billion years of evolution it has worked out a perfect system of creating new life forms without any adverse impacts and only using solar energy. It has created a perfect cyclic system of inputs and waste, becoming a symbiotic perfection. Most people only think of waste when they’re affected by it, and so they promote recycling and separation. Their reaction is called the “not in my back yard (NIMBY)” syndrome. But the truth is, the field of waste is so much bigger and has been moving in many different directions. The cutting edge which has been happening for decades is the new frontier. The following is a glimpse into the future which is NOW…

Consider this…

The Industrial Revolution (IR) has produced the largest and most toxic waste the world has ever known. Architect Willian McDonough soundly states that we have designed a system of production (he was referring to the IR) that:

  • Puts billions of pounds of toxic materials into the air, water and soil every year
  • Produces some materials so dangerous they will require constent vigilance by future generations
  • Results in gigantic amounts of waste
  • Puts valuable materials in the holes all over the planet where they can never be retrieved
  • Requires thousands of complex regulations – not to keep people and natural systems safe, but rather to keep them from being poisoned too quickly
  • Measures productivitity by how few people are working
  • Creates prosperity by digging up or cutting down natural resources and then burying or burning them
  • Erodes the diversity of species and cultural practices

(Source: Cradle to Cradle, W McDonough & M Braungart, North Point Press, NYC, NY 2002. p 18.)