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Date: 2024-05-19 Page is: DBtxt001.php txt00001984

Sustainability, Society and Economy
Being Green Is Not New

A posting on Google+ about how an older generation were a whole lot greener than the modern pampered 'green' young folk

COMMENTARY
The metrics of society are wrong ... manufacturing a plastic bag and throwing it away is going to be part of the GDP, but using a good bag or basket over and over again is not. Everything one does for oneself has zero 'value' in the computation of GDP ... and does not make investors any profit either. Since when was the investor the ONLY stakeholder in society? Since the stupid modern metrics of the economy became ubiquitous and carried on the evening news every day and on newsfeeds like Bloomberg as a continuous stream.

Society will start to heal itself when the scorekeeping is changed and the most important thing is the quality of life of each and every one of us, not merely those that 'own' the economy.
Peter Burgess

Being Green Is Not New

Not mine, its been floating around the web for a few days but does it ring true!

Checking out at the grocery store recently, the young cashier suggested I should bring my own grocery bags because plastic bags weren't good for the environment.

I apologized and explained, 'We didn't have this green thing back in my earlier days.'

The clerk responded, 'That's our problem today. Your generation did not care enough to save our environment for future generations.'

She was right about one thing -- our generation didn't have the green thing in 'Our' day. So what did we have back then…? After some reflection and soul-searching on 'Our' day here's what I remembered we did have....

  • Back then, we returned milk bottles, pop bottles and beer bottles to the shop. The shop sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles repeatedly. So they really were recycled. But we didn't have the green thing back in our day.
  • We walked up stairs, because we didn't have an escalator in every shop and office building. We walked to the grocery shop and didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time we had to go two streets. But she was right. We didn't have the green thing in our day.
  • Back then, we washed the baby's nappies because we didn't have the throw-away kind. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 220 volts -- wind and solar power really did dry our clothes back in our early days. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing. But that young lady is right. We didn't have the green thing back in our day.
  • Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house -- not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen the size of a cinema. In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn't have electric machines to do everything for us. When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used wadded up old newspapers to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap. Back then, we didn't fire up an engine and burn petrol just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power. We exercised by working so we didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity. But she's right. We didn't have the green thing back then.
  • We drank from the tap when we were thirsty instead of using a plastic cup or a plastic bottle every time we had a drink of water. We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull. But we didn't have the green thing back then.
  • Back then, people took the tram or a bus, and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their mums into a 24-hour taxi service. We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And we didn't need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest chippy.
But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just because we didn't have the green thing back then?

Goodnight G+ ;)


Robert Redl - 11:15 AM - Public via +Albert Koellner Mike Shaw originally shared this post:
January 10, 2012
The text being discussed is available at Google+
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