Zephyrhills: Not So Recycle Friendly

My friend Minna and I went in to town, looking to replenish our grocery supplies, whilst hoping to find a place to recycle our glass bottles (aka lots of beer from the New Year’s celebrations) and Minna’s plastic ‘Zephyrhills Water’ bottles. After much querying and driving around town, we found one sole lonely recycling centre. Sadly for us, they only dealt with recycling of aluminum, tin and other metals. On the Zhills water bottle and website, they clearly state: “We recommend that our water bottles be recycled, not reused. Every bottle produced by NWNA is recyclable, including our clear caps ….. Consumers can reduce the overall environmental impact associated with drinking a bottle of water by 25%, just by recycling the bottle after use. Recycled bottles are in high demand for use in products such as fabric, carpeting and other consumer goods.” Well big flippin deal! It seems that they’re are ALL talk, no action. There is NO public recycling facility in Zephyrhills to even deal with all the wasteful plastic product that this company is producing. I tried truly. I drove all over town, asking shops and manufacturers where I could drop off the plastic and glass recycling that we’ve been toting around for the past few weeks. Nothing, zippo, zilch. I’ve never been a big fan of plastic water bottles (I used to be a proud owner of a Sigg 100% recyclable aluminum water bottle (Lululemon baby!), but it went AWOL when I arrived at our current destination). Love the drop zone, not so fond of the city and corporate politics. Now I’m begrudging of the Zephyrhills Water parent company, especially now. They say:  ‘Less plastic, better environment’. Ok, if this were the truth, people shouldn’t be drinking from plastic water bottles period. And even then, if they do, this eco-logical slogan only works if there are recycling depots available that effectively deal with the burgeoning load of plastic trash mounds! The big recycling question that exists in my mind: where does our recycled plastic and goods go? Check out the 5 Gyres website to be truly informed. Plastic … the irresponsible use of our disposable and ‘plastic’ mentality is a weighty, unyielding incessant and often-hidden worldwide problem. I so want to scream at the top of my lungs: “Stop using plastic (and styrofoam — a whole other issue) wherever you can”. Make it a resolution if you must. Easier said than done, I know. Even the organic produce, the bread, the frozen fruit for our smoothies, the yogurt containers, etc etc that we purchase are often either contained or wrapped in plastic. There’s hardly any escape, even with the healthiest of food choices and options available. “Most of what we eat, drink, or use in any way comes packaged in petroleum plastic- a material designed to last forever, yet used for products that we then throw away.” What’s wrong with this picture?? What is the resultant problem of our persistent use of plastic? “The short-term convenience of using and throwing away plastic products carries a very inconvenient long-term truth.” Plastic is clogging up our oceans, contaminating the food chain and asphyxiating us with it’s toxic fumes and chemical residue.

Recycle FAIL!

It all starts with a mindset and an intention. My goal in this life // to walk softly on this earth. Through example and education, and to finding solutions when roadblocks pop up where I least expect.

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