Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Alberta town moves to ban styrofoam

I didn't do anything particularly special for Earth Day today, but the Alberta town of Turner Valley sure did -- their council members voted unanimously to ban the use of styrofoam in their town:

Garry Pollock, the councillor championing the ban, said Monday night's decision was historic.

"We're excited because oil and gas [in Alberta] is first recognized to be discovered here in Turner Valley," he said. "It's nice to be on board on Earth Day to be the first in Alberta and in Canada to look at the prohibition of Styrofoam."

It's great to see individuals, small groups and municipal governments leading the way with measures like these. Maybe one day the provincial and federal governments will also wake up and realize that things need to change. My cynical self says that they will somehow manage to take credit for all the work done so far, but I suppose I shouldn't let that bother me. It just matters that it gets done, not who gets the credit:
Tao Te Ching Chapter 77:

As it acts in the world, the Tao
is like the bending of a bow.
The top is bent downward;
the bottom is bent up.
It adjusts excess and deficiency
so that there is perfect balance.
It takes from what is too much
and gives to what isn't enough.

Those who try to control,
who use force to protect their power,
go against the direction of the Tao.
They take from those who don't have enough
and give to those who have far too much.

The Master can keep giving
because there is no end to her wealth.
She acts without expectation,
succeeds without taking credit,
and doesn't think that she is better
than anyone else.

Translation courtesy S. Mitchell


Simply Authentic said...

Fabulous! Styrofoam is the worst! If only the entire world would have banned it years ago! Kudos to Canada also for naming Bis A as toxic. Maybe this will create more movement in the U.S. In terms of the election, I'm not really sure. I would say the nation definitely wants change, but I think people are torn when it comes to the current democratic race. In some ways I'd like to see C and O on the same ticket, but with the way things are going-am not sure that could happen.

Theresa said...

I forgot to post about that one actually, the banning of Bisphenol A in baby bottles (and other baby-related items, I think). I notice that quite a few places in the US have already banned styrofoam, which is great!

CindyW said...

Congrats Turner Vally. Way to go! Because of the ubiquitous use of styrofoam take out boxes, I no longer order anything other than pizza. I will have to write to my mayor. Thanks for the inspiration.

Anonymous said...

Alberta's move was the topic of conversation in the grocery line yesterday. Another person with a canvas bag was right ahead of me, (I, of course, forgot mine in the car, and loaded my two small purchases into my huge purse/filing cabinet to take to the car,) and I started talking about what other places were REALLY DOING to help the environment, and we both applauded Alberta.

Theresa said...

cindyw - you're welcome! It was inspiring to me too. Just when I think things will never change, the birthplace of the petroleum industry in Alberta goes and does something progressive!

Artby - wow! It's not often Alberta gets applause for stuff like this, but it sure is good news! How neat that it's being talked about elsewhere too.

And today on the news I heard that Edmonton is thinking of banning plastic bags! Or of at least imposing a per-bag charge to start with. I don't know very much about it yet - but it sure was encouraging!