(Just for clarification, SOB stands for Save Our Beautification ;)
There’s nothing like going home and being greeted by a huge billboard with trash bags hanging off of it calling our town’s judge a SOB (at least in a round about way :) I’m sure he’s a great guy, but the peer pressure from other politicians to add a scandal to his resume probably just got the best of him. Seriously, who could blame him? I would be tempted to make a back-room deal and keep it totally hidden from the community too if it meant I got a mountain of trash named after me!
I think our elected officials get confused sometimes WHO they are supposed to be representing – companies with big money, or the people who elected them. Hempstead’s mayor had a few words to say about that…
The citizen’s of our community are outraged and have held protests, fundraisers, asked for donations, and have prayed their hearts out trying to stop the city of Houston from turning our town into it’s dumping grounds. The dumpsters couldn’t have done a better job “targeting a largely minority and economically disadvantaged community,” not only that, but the proposed site is 2 miles from the center of town, and 95% or more of the garbage will be trucked in from different County’s.
All this trash talk got me thinking, “What if there were NO trucks making your trash disappear for an extended period of time?” American’s are not shy about creating plenty of trash, I would know, I contribute my fair share to the stinky mess every Tuesday and Friday. On average, a person will throw away about 4.4 lbs of trash a day, 29 lbs a week, or 1600 lbs a year! Hopefully you’ll never have to go a year without trash service, but I know it was tough for me to wait even 2 weeks after Hurricane Ike before roads were cleared and trucks started showing up again. So with all this trash, where would you put it all, especially if no one was picking it up for you?
One of the first things to consider is where to put it all? A few things I’ve learned from our town’s fight against the landfill is the location you put your trash can make a lasting impact on the community, your health, and many other things.
So whether you decide on a solution to deal with your trash problem yourself, or combine efforts with your neighbors, here are some things you might want to consider:
- SURFACE WATER POLLUTION – You need to be mindful of potentially polluting the surface water that can sometimes run into rivers or other water that is used for drinking.
- VERMIN – Trash is a source that attracts rats, raccoons, feral hogs, and birds which can quickly spread disease.
- SANITATION ISSUES – When trash is just lying around, on windy days it can be blown anywhere, making places unsanitary and taking disease with it.
- GROUND WATER POLLUTION – It can pollute the aquifer, which is used in many cities for drinking water.
- ODORS – This is probably the most obvious, at least I want to pass out every time I open up our trash!
So with all these considerations in mind, think of a place or method you could use to dispose of your trash. You never know when you may get promoted to becoming your own garbage man, or woman (not sure what the politically correct word is).
5 Ways to Dispose of Trash:
At our farm we designated a safe area to throw and burn all our trash. Another option is using a metal trashcan and burning everything in there. Be careful not to burn anything toxic that would turn into a health hazard. Remember safety first, you don’t want to burn your house down while you’re at it, then you’ll have an entirely different problem!
Designate an area of your yard as the trash grave-yard and dig a huge pit. You need to familiarize yourself with what’s in your yard first, such as underground power-lines and any possibilities of it contaminating drinking water.
Don’t just throw away leftover fruits, vegetable and other organic material, start a compost pile. You can even throw in shredded newspaper and cardboard if you have any lying around. Compost is great way to give your garden the nutrients it needs or help cover unwanted plants or weeds. Compost is increasingly being used in landfills to revitalize the soil too. So if you choose to create your own mini-landfill, you can use the compost to help cover it up!
I’m constantly amazed at what people do with items I thought were doomed for the landfill. I’ve seen people save all their plastic bottles and milk jugs to hold water, and use their leftover food to feed their animals. They’re so many ideas and examples, be creative and I’m sure you can come up with some of your own.
One the best ways to deal with trash, is by not creating it in the first place! Most preparedness minded people are already doing this. When trying to stock up on items, I’ve realized the more space and money-saving solutions are also the eco-friendly ones. This is probably a good time to start using disposable diapers, sew your own poo wipes, and even get your own Diva Cup for that time of the month.
Also, if for some reason stores and fast-food restaurants had to close down for an extended amount of time that would dramatically decrease the amount of trash created. When you’re not buying stuff, you’re not throwing away stuff!
Save Our Beautification!
Sometimes it’s good to be a SOB – as long as you’re Saving Our Beautification at the same time! No one wants to turn their home into a dump, especially during a crisis. Hopefully, this helped you think of a few ideas of what you could do if you’re ever faced with literally taking out the trash (not just taking it to the curb)!
Share your ideas… what would you do?
P.S. Feel free to help save our town from becoming a dump by donating HERE, the support would help more than you know :)