Okay I’m done…I get carried away about this stuff…sorry.
Okay. Let me pick up the baton :)
I agree. We are only tinkering around the edges of this environmental issue. The human world is still centered on runaway production, and the power that comes from consumer economics — all subtly enforced by global militarism in the background.
Unless recycling is enforced and there are fines for not recycling and for polluting people are going to keep throwing everything in the garbage and/or polluting as they always have.
I share your enthusiasm to do something but I honestly do not think laws will be much use in this area. Until people realize how big the stakes are and get responsible by themselves, there will always be those who abuse any system. I am aware here of preaching a sort of idealist form of personally-responsible anarchy, but I do not see any alternative. And on a sober note, there is no guarantee that sanity will prevail here. Our future may just be one of proving ourselves too stupid to address the issues.
The government could provide tax incentives for doing this and the garbage dumps can make money selling the recycles back to manufacturers for them to reuse.
These are all nice ideas, but the problem is that there is more profit elsewhere, and our governments are effectively owned by businesses. I see this problem manifested tangibly in the supermarkets where they have been stopped from handing out free plastic carrier bags as a sort of token gesture to addressing the issue, but meanwhile the aisles are absolutely heaving with all sorts of over-the-top packaging that is largely designed to attract buyer attention and urge a purchase. And all of this translates into our cultures in which politicians and ordinary people of all persuasions discuss all these key issues in purely monetary terms. It is a case of, as they say, people knowing the price of everything and the value of nothing. Many people effectively think the economy, or even just their personal budget, comes before the planet. That’s a deeply ingrained and almost natural perspective that will be hard to shift. Unless our culture embraces that we really are all in this together — sink or swim — I think we are finished. But what a stack of related benefits if we could only rediscover our common humanity!