Visiting a landfill should be required of anyone who uses one. I visited one long ago on a high school field trip and the images often pop back into my brain as I'm casually tossing out this or that at home. Photographer Gregg Segal's series, 7 Days of Garbage, is a provocative look at people lying amidst a week's worth of their garbage. Take a look, multiply a week by, I don't know, the 3,500 or so weeks you'll be alive and then multiply that by everyone you know and everyone they know and...
Slate recently featured this photographic series along with an interview with Segal who says some of the participants didn't truly bring ALL their garbage with them (#trashcurators). Even so, the amount of packaging and waste makes me a bit nauseous. Hopefully, much of the plastic, metal and paper shown would normally be recycled.
It's so easy for the trash we generate to be out-of-sight/out-of mind and, living in a small apartment, I love getting rid of things. Taking the trash and recycling out is downright cathartic. There are days when I am very diligent about disposing of things in the most responsible way I know how, but, I'll admit, there are lazier days when I just want it out, out, out. The key, I suppose, is to be more diligent about what gets in in the first place.
Does your own garbage bum you out or am I the only one lying awake at night thinking about my stuff sitting in a landfill?
(Image credits: Gregg Segal via Slate)