I live on the 5th floor of my apartment building. When they trash in my kitchen gets full I tie it up and take it to the trash room where I press this glowing green button, hear sharp buzz, then a click, and then I open up the chute and throw in the trash.
I rarely think of that trash beyond the chute. Once that trash is down it’s out of sight and out of mind. It’s as if it never existed. Obviously that is not the case. It has to go somewhere, but it’s just no longer my problem. This is becoming less and less true as our trash is running out of places to go. Just seeing the amount of trash that my one apartment of 4 individuals produces on a weekly basis is honestly frightening, especially when you multiply that by the 500+ units in the building times the number of apartment buildings in LA times the number of cities as big as LA, etc. etc. But you really can’t blame everyday people for the trash that they produce. I mean you can to some extent; there are definitely ways that I can actively reduce my trash production. What I mean is society and corporations have made us so reliant on consumable, single use goods that you basically have no choice but to buy them if you are shopping at your average grocery or supermarket.
Just because this is where we are now, doesn’t mean this is where we have to stay. Just like small amounts of trash from a bunch of individuals adds up, so do efforts to reduce it. If we were all a little more conscientious about our choices (privilege permitting) and started thinking beyond the chute, maybe we can start moving a better direction for the future of our planet.