What a Load of Rubbish!

Waste is a big environmental issue. It is a problem that we all help to create, both locally and globally, but fortunately it is also a problem that we can help to reduce.

Common sense tells us that recycling what we no longer need is better for the environment than simply burying it in a hole in the ground. As a nation we throw away over 240 million tonnes of controlled waste. This includes household and industrial waste. Every 9 months we produce enough waste to fill up Lake Windermere. On average every household produces 1 tonne of waste every year.

Recycling an aluminium can uses 95% less energy than making a new one from raw materials, so, apart from helping to conserve valuable resources, it also helps reduce pollution. Up to 80% of our household waste could be recycled, which is almost double the current rate of recycling in South Cambs.*

Unfortunately recycling is not everyone’s priority and waste is often discarded causally, ending up as litter despoiling our communities. Members of Sustainable Girton recently collected quantities of glass bottles, drinks cans, plastic bottles, paper and scrap metal including half a bike from the Recreation Ground – all of which have now been recycled through the local “banks” and the Milton tip.

Despite these, and the efforts of many local residents to “tend their patch”, this only serves to help us cope with the problem of waste in the environment. What we really need is to REDUCE the production of waste in the first place. Here are some ways you could do this:

  • Switch to milk deliveries using re-usable bottles.
  • Grow your own vegetables.
  • Join a local/organic “veg-box” delivery scheme.
  • Take your old carrier bags to the shops.
  • Take advantage of schemes that encourage the re-use of materials such as Cambridge Free-Cycle.
  • Drink tap water rather than bottled water.
  • Eat less! Go on, deny yourself; you know you’re worth it!

More rubbish collecting days are planned in the village – the next one will be on Saturday 11th August. Please meet at the Recreation Ground car park at 10am and bring your own gloves. Pincers will be provided, along with bags for collection and refreshments afterwards.

* Thanks to South Cambs District Council for some of the text.