Sunday, October 21, 2007


Local reusable shopping bags. We try and reduce the use of plastic shopping bags at the supermarket and everywhere. Plastic shopping bags are resistant to biodegrading in landfill and old ones end up all over the place and are fatal to animals, such as dolphins, who ingest them by mistake.


PaB said...

Good rules for life.
We take part to a yard sale today based also on this principle : REUSE.

Hyderabad Daily Photo said...

There are rules here which prohibit the use of plastic bags which are too thin (below a certain thickness but I don't remember the specs), but people don't follow it, and it is difficult to implement the rules here. Especially street vendors cannot afford to buy thicker bags I think. Other than not being biodegradable, we have seen immediate consequences of plastic bags getting stuck in storm drains and causing floods during heavy rains. But neither the authorities nor the citizenry seem to care. This is especially sad since a couple of decades ago people used cloth bags, and the corner grocery store packed smaller items and grains, sugar in small quantities in newspapers. For large quantities (in Kgs), people used cloth bags. People used to collect newspapers and plastic sachets for milk and sold them to recyclers. Alas, all that has changed with the arrival of grocery store chains, and the local stores routinely use plastic. Even the street vendors selling fruits and vegetables use thin plastic bags for the "convenience" of their customers! Yet another thing where the East is imitating West and the West is going the way East was before it got westernized.

julia said...

I see just what you mean. Flooding is bad news. Yes, there are many ingenious packaging methods and the east had lead with all that. Cloth is good. I havn't heard about thin or thick but some types of plastic bags are biodegradable. Plastics are linked with petro-chemicals in manufacture. Will peak-oil end them off?
Packaging is around everything in modern marketing. I like to use banana leaves sometimes at our dinner table, it is not the done thing here, however my banana plant has been chopped down and i hope to get another and restrain it to a potplant!

Hyderabad Daily Photo said...

Hey that is cool! I did not know anyone did that outside South India (use banana leaves). It was very common to see banana leaves being used as "plates", especially when a large number of people ate, such as in wedding celebrations. Now, a few restaurants serve food on banana leaves which is kept in a steel plate. Just the other day I was thinking of taking a photo of food on banana leaves as we got take out food from a restaurant and they packed it in banana leaves which were packed in newsprint. ("Take out" or "to go"is called "parcel" here. What do you call it?)
Other than banana leaves there is another type of leaf used in this manner, but it is dry and not as elegant. In fact they are smaller leaves, roughly the size of a palm, and they are "pinned" together with some kind of plant material (sorry don't know the word) to make it big enough to be the size of a large plate. But they are flimsy and leaky.

Regarding perplexing trends in education - I used to wonder about that myself (why doctors, nurses and others could not be trained in enough numbers in the West). My overall observation regarding higher education in the US has been that jobs are available with hardly any educational qualification and there is too much pressure to start earning money and be on your own feet. On the other hand in countries like India and China, children continue to live with their parents well into their late twenties and parents give more importance to education of their children. Till globalization brought a huge number of jobs, there was scarcity of jobs and cut-throat competition meant people need education. The other day I spoke to a vacuum cleaner salesman who told me that their minimum qualification was a bachelors degree! On the other hand, industries such as BPO (business process outsourcing) are paying such high amounts (by Indian standards) that I saw in a documentary that dentists and engineers are lining up to do call center jobs because they pay more than traidional dentist/engineer jobs!!!! Talk about perplexing trends!!

NorthBayPhoto said...

Good rules. Great post!

Jen Jen in Jakarta, Indonesia said...

I wish we had more of these bags in Jakarta. I brought all mine from Australia and get some very curious looks when I use them here.
There is a great program here recycling plastic pouch bags (eg fabric softener)into designer purses and carry bags.
I will try and find the link and post it.