“Sanitation Department” is a misnomer.
“Sanitize” means to make something healthy or clean. When waste and dirt like our poop used to contain germs like cholera but when processed became compost or food for plants, to “sanitize” it made sense. We made what was unclean clean, what was unhealthy healthy.
Not a Sanitation Issue. A Too-Much-Production Issue
Situations like the picture below are increasingly normal. People call them sanitation issues, but no sanitation department can keep up with our production. Watch The Story of Plastic for how the countries where we send our waste look.
We are creating too much long-lasting poisonous waste. We think we can’t live without it, but of course we can. That’s the addiction speaking. We can’t live with it.
With plastic, PFAS, and today’s pollution, we don’t make things clean or healthy. We just move them. Since people inhabit most of the world, moving them usually means into someone else’s life. In that case, we haven’t cleaned or made healthy. We’ve just shifted our problem to someone else.
We don’t have to produce so much waste that is poisonous and doesn’t break down. It’s why I practiced continual improvement to where I take three years to fill a load of garbage. Waiting for governments and corporations to change means it will never happen. We, everyone, has to act.
The good news is that what looks like it will take time and effort you will find rewarding and wish you had started earlier. You too can take longer to fill a load of trash. You too can never order from Amazon.com or buy bottled water again.
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