My fiancee and I are having a green wedding. That means that we’re making conscious choices about the environmental impacts of every wedding-related decision we make, including what we provide to our guests. We decided not to provide soft drinks, but rather to provide a selection of healthier, organic juices. We went to the grocery store and found ourselves in a classic environmental dilemma, much like the ketchup bottle situation that Rick Smith found himself in when writing Slow Death by Rubber Duck. On one side, we found Santa Cruz Organic juices, a product of California and packaged in a glass bottle. On the other hand, we found Kiju Organic juices, a local Ontario product, packaged in a Tetra Pak container. Both products were the same price for roughly the same volume of juice, so there was no financial aspect to the decision. A glass bottle is more sustainable than a Tetra Pak, but a local product means it didn’t travel as far – if only there was a local product in a glass bottle! But alas, this is the classic environmental dilemma – more often than not, when trying to be environmentally responsible, you are faced not with an ideal choice, but with having to choose the lesser of two evils.
Go into your bathroom and look at the ingredients on every cosmetic or personal care product. Unless you are an avid purchaser of eco and/or health friendly products, I guarantee that almost all of them will list either Fragrance or Parfum as an ingredient. But what exactly is fragrance or parfum? The sad reality is that you might not want to know the answer.
Right now, oil is the hot commodity. But it might not always be that way. Whether or not we have hit peak oil, it’s a finite resource and it won’t last forever. And then the real resource war will start. Because, you see, humans can survive without oil. Our ancestors did so for thousands of years. What humans cannot survive without is water. And water, like oil, is a finite resource. Look around you, and it might seem like there is plenty of water. We live around lakes, rivers, streams and creeks. You probably have a decorative fountain or pool not far away. Water freely flows out of our taps and into our toilets. Well, not literally out of course, that water comes at a cost, both financial and environmental.