I agree with the previous posting about looking to Europe as a guide to recycling. In Belgium ( yes again) there is a school that has been designed with movable walls, so that in the Summer the classes can be opened up to make cooler and in Winter the reverse happens, but the clever thing is that they use the heat from the kids running about during the day to heat the school rooms. I look at some of the schools in this country and I am amazed that some still have pre-war radiators that send any hot air straight out of the window. If we are going to take recycling in this country at all seriously then we should be charged for the bags we put out, but also if it was worked out on the average per house, then a rebate could be given for the amount of green bags put out.
My council, bless their unbleached fair trade cotton socks are really good, we have the paper, glass and tins box, though this is far too small to cope with the amount of newspapers and junk mail we get through in a week and once a fortnight we get a gardening recycling collection, by far the most useful, but this could be improved by the design of a municipal recycling bin that would seperate and store until the collection. At the moment I have to collect the plastic cartons and packaging and then go to the tip. Surely if we want to get ahead of the recycling regime then there has to be an incentive all round.
I like the comment that house builders don't like putting in green products like solar panels because it is too expensive, well guess what its the law. All new builds have to be energy effecient, and in my mind that means solar panels. So would someone like to tell me why there hasn't been one prosecution lately? With house prices the way they are, I cannot believe that builders are cutting costs to the bone so lets have a few more energy effecient and green houses.
Also the government are very good at telling us to get on the green bandwagon, so lets start seeing some of the ministers cars using bio fuels, converted diesel engines that use vegetable oils and some form of legislation which means that if a new car is sold the owner would have the opportunity to have the car converted to bio fuel at no extra cost to themselves, and the manufacturer would be able to get a tax refund on that car.
Putting tax on things to prevent people buying them has never worked. When I smoked the increase on cigarettes never stopped me, so why should anybody stop using their car if petrol goes up. It should be positive and negative together. Tax rebates that follow the green line and tax increases for those that don't. Then maybe the car manufacturers and the fuel companies would start thinking about the alternatives. Its not rocket science is it?
We have to look to Europe, for example in Germany all taps are fitted with their own little stop valve, so that if a washer need replacing, you don't have to turn off the whole water system, including the pilot light for the central heating etc.etc. but just a little twist and the water is cut off from that one tap enabling you to change the washer or whatever. Its simple things like that that make it easier for everybody. Its easier to replace the washer for the plumber, for you and me. If you know its going to be a pain then we all leave a job until it finally gets out of hand and its going to cost a lot to repair. Imagine the water lost from a dripping tap over a week, a month two months. Its the small things that make the difference.
Try buying milk from a milkman, who delivers. Generally they use the most local herds and deliver in an electric vehicle. Its a small thing but agin if all the small things were put end to end, some corporation would charge rent for its going on their land.
Benjamin Franklin once said that
"for the want of anail the shoe was lost,
for the want of the shoe the horse was lost
for the want of the horse the rider was lost
for the want of the rider the message was lost
for the want of the message the battle was lost
for the want of the battle the war was lost
all for the wamnt of a horseshoe nail"
If you think in terms of global warming which has become rebranded as climate change it the small things that make the difference. I rest my case.