Thursday, August 4, 2011

It's Not As Bad as We Think

From the active bean of Green Bean.

With school a few short weeks away, I rounded up my "waste free" lunch box containers and noticed something.  One of my first blog posts ever involved packing waste free lunches. I snapped the photo below.  

Sure my containers were full of BPA but back then - 2007 - people were just starting to talk about BPA. Sandwich wraps and reusable cloth baggies?  Those were for people who sewed their own.  I made do and I made less waste and I was happy.

Over time, my plastic containers cracked or disappeared.  I won a giveaway for reusable sandwich wraps and bags and then invested in a few myself. Reusables were everywhere!  The choices overwhelming.  Here is my drawer today:

But this is not a post about waste-free lunches or going back to school or even a post for parents.  Rather, the evolution of how I pack a lunch got me thinking how far the green movement really has come.

Back in 2007, there weren't reusable lunch options.  There weren't readily available canning supplies.  Few people carried their own bags, drank out of reusable water containers or composted.  Today, many of us do.  You can tell by the people in line in front of you at Trader Joe's or even at Target and Safeway.  You can tell by helping out at school during lunch.  You can tell by the fact that there are finally electric vehicles on the road!  And you can tell by the recent poll indicating that 58% of Americans - not just the young or the wealthy - want organic food.  That is MOST Americans!

Despite climate change deniers, our "elected representatives" and the disheartening siege against environmental protections in Washington, America has gone green!  We carry out own water bottles, we shop at farmers' markets, and we think twice before using anything disposable.  That fact alone gives me faith in the green movement.  People care about living green.  Millions of us.  

Now we just need to get those who make the rules behind us.  We need to move past the cocoon of personal action and write letters, make phone calls, go to rallies, and vote with our green green hearts.  Do you hear us Washington?  We are coming and we don't want any bottled water when we get there!


Tanya @ Lovely Greens said...

I've never seen the little cloth sandwich baggies here in the UK...are they just like little sandwich duvet covers?

Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking said...

These are awesome containers! I have not seen the cloth sandwich bags either. I am definitely going to check into them! Thanks!!

Carlee said...

do you love the cloth baggies? i've pondered that idea but not sure about the clean up...

Betsy (Eco-Novice) said...

You can get cloth bags lined with nylon (usually), then they are pretty easy to shake out or wipe off with a sponge. All cloth works well for things like crackers (for short-term storage, like a lunch), or grapes. I did an Etsy round up of reusable bags:

There are TONS of choices in reusable cloth bags and other bags these days, and I do appreciate it.

When I had cockroaches a few months ago, I was so glad that there are now a few "eco-friendly" options out there. Even if I had to hire someone, there are less toxic options out there now. In terms of options in the marketplace, I think we really have made lots of progress.

Elizabeth said...

"No readily available canning supplies in 2007"??? Here in Wisconsin the canning sections are set up year round, though in season they can be up to 10x as large,at for example the Fleet Farm type store. Maybe in your area, wherever that is. And canning supplies have not just recently appeared, though now that there seems to be a more yuppie interest in it there are newer cuter items like "collapsible funnels" in lime green and "canning kits". I love the idea of the kit as makes so easy for someone to start. I have an old enamel inherited from Grandma small canner and a larger pressure canner, and I have let people who want to, come and can at my house.


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