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Living Less Unsustainably: Containers and Looking In The Mirror

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Caroline Attwood
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KLCC's John Fischer says it's a good idea to bring your own take-out containers when you dine out, but that's tricky for some since it's a change in behavior.

I have spent much of my life learning about, practicing, and preaching waste reduction. Following the greenest path has become - well - my path. But there are places where I could be greener, but have not. We'll talk about my hypocrisy in a moment, but first let me give you an example I encounter that may ring a bell for you.

When you eat out, they give you more food than you can, or at least should, eat in one sitting. And then you are faced with the agonizing choice of a Styrofoam clamshell, an unrecyclable plastic coated cardboard box, or a non-compostable container. At least we all agree that the food- even one French fry should be taken home- not thrown away.

Well there is another option. Bring your own container. This is where people tell me "I like to prevent waste, but bringing my own container- that's past my limit". Why? I suppose because it is a change in behavior.

If you order take out, and don't like the containers, just say you will eat it there, take one bite, then put the rest in YOUR container to take home. Thinking outside the container.

Now my hypocrisy. I read books and newspapers made of paper. I do a little online reading with one publication, but have not even tried the much more energy efficient e-books because I am old, and this is how I've always done it. I'll try the new way.

If you want an efficient electric vehicle, but think you'll miss that internal combustion sound that has long been associated with transportation, I have a solution for you.

Siri, play motor noise for me. Rmm rmm rmm rmm rmm. Since the engine sounds will now be in the vehicle with you on the stereo, instead of outside, scaring little children outside, you can have them engine sounds as loud as YOU like inside. RMM RMMM RMMMMM.

New ways to have what we're used to and increase sustainability. It's an idea so crazy it just might work.

John Fischer is a Master Gardener and Master Recycler and the host of KLCC's Good Gardening and Living Less Sustainably.