Columnist: “Reduce, recycle and reuse for the next generation”
By Jamie Miles
Meeting present needs without compromising the ability to meet future needs. For example, not using the last drop of milk on your cereal (just because you stumbled into the kitchen first) so your sister can have a cup of milk for breakfast (for she refuses to drink anything but dairy or Coke before 8 a.m.). Taking time to be considerate saves a lot of morning strife.
Sustainability is forethought ensuring plentiful resources either for family breakfast or the Earth for your great-grandchildren’s, great-grandchildren. By loose calculations my great-grandchildren’s great-grandchildren will arrive in year 2148 and I will be 185-years-old. And in desperate need of face lift – or maybe a face to lift? Yes, we all will be gone by 2148 and what will have become of Madison’s beauty and resources?
This Saturday, the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center, Madison-Morgan Conservancy, Church of the Advent and Hunkerdowns present Madison’s first Sustainability Expo from 10 – 3 p.m. at the Cultural Center.
Find all sorts of locally grown produce at the Farmer’s Market on the lawn. Pick up some tomatoes, peppers along with delicious Georgia produced relishes and jellies and some of Ellijay’s first apples. Stroll through the Hall gathering great ideas to make changes in the way we do things today – to ensure plenty for generations to come. Solar power, recycling, sustainable forestry and landscaping, water conservation and many others. The Echoes of Eco puppetry show in the auditorium at 10:30 a.m. is a free performance for all ages featuring giant puppets emphasizing the importance of protecting the land and its creatures.
Implementing little changes like channeling precious rainfall from a downspout into a rain barrel or hundred-gallon underground reservoir. A yard planted with drought resistant foliage. Remembering to bring reusable shopping bags into the store, rather than left behind on the car seat. Reduce, recycle, reuse and readjust thinking.
Recently my daughter and cousin blissfully played all afternoon. I assumed caring for imaginary Gameboy dogs. Called to dinner, they presented the fruit of their play to grandparents: a detailed recycling plan (in triplicate). Our current recycling plan features Mom checking all the trash cans for absent-mindedly discarded Gatorade bottles and plastic Oreo sheaths. I do a lot of search and rescue feeling guilty seeing recyclables thrown out. I’m envious of the excitement and passion that motivate this younger generation.
As caretakers of Madison, we need to take our job seriously. Get excited about cutting waste, eating the fruit of our soil and planting seeds for the next hundred years. Let’s readjust our actions toward the bounty we inherited only through grace. Like leaving a little milk in that recyclable jug, it’s just the polite thing to do.