Saturday, May 19, 2012

Earth Day Everyday ~ Week Six

Recycling Electronics and Other Products

For week six of EARTH DAY EVERYDAY we are asked to look at what  electronic  products we rely on and really think about the what happens to these items when they are used up . I mean think about it all things wear down , break down , some need to be replaced . My dh was talking about the subject of fixing things . Our dd vehicle broke down and he helped repair it . 
He was saying how he never was taught how to fix cars or electronics but more it was the type of family he came from . If something breaks you try and repair it . You figure out how things work and just fix it . His grandfather and father were both like this . They just never would think to throw stuff out or get someone else to fix things . 
My dh does all work on all our vehicles , computers , cameras , sewing machine  etc. it has saved us loads of money and fact is we probably never would've had vehicles throughout the yrs. had he not been able to or had the attitude he could fix things . 
He also has noticed the issue of cheap manufactured things . That not only does a washing machine , stove break down , the time period in which items break is ridiculous . once where a stove or washer might last into two families rarely is this the case . okay sometimes items break down and even though they are cheap they can be fixed but the parts are made often so you cannot replace one item but have to repurchase a whole new part rather than just a piece . 
So what do we have in our home that not only is plastic but also electronic ? clock radios , we have both VCR & DVD players , we've old turn table , tuners , cassette player , a television , my laptop , camera, the boys each have some kind of video game box system , stove , fridge , microwave , HE washer & dryer , toaster , waffle iron , iron , cordless telephone , dh has a cell phone his work gave him , ds25 has his own cell phone .
When appliances have broken there are several guys in the area who collect scrap metal so we've given to them so they can collect the cash . 
dh found a place that recycles computers and resells them . but honestly I've wondered , what if a computer cannot be re-used there must be parts that cannot be recycled . 
we have gone without computers and used library and really it is fine . when dh bought me this laptop I sort of cringed at the thought because I really came to like going to library only using computer for short time periods . and reality is more people at home personal use computers we could most of us use library or public computers should be more accessible at schools too . but how about business ? the world is reliant on the electronic system . all the stores, all the offices , all the hospitals . so what is necessary and what is not ? what is the world using in access ? 
I love having our music our old turntable and records , I love tv , the good stuff , yet to what extent do we/I need all this ? 
what about good radio going down the tubes ? is this a result of people using online for news , music etc. ? 
the world seems global but how much is actually turned into self isolation ? 
My dh wants us to be off grid , this does not mean without electricity just not using that of Hydro , but do we want to use electronics at all ? 
I know I want the wood cook stove , I've been wondering about an ice house instead of a fridge too
even though we have a HE washer and dryer I am getting an old wringer washer from my cousins this summer and hanging our wash . if it works well I'll use it throughout winter as well. 
what about cars , in our search for a property over the yrs we've witnessed several interesting uses for old vans . one place used it as a chicken coop and another , get this made a homemade outdoor wood boiler ! it was hilarious but did the job . 
I see out of the city our kids rarely want for electronic items . bikes are used old skills are reborn . 
I read more , I write real letters , we walk , ride bikes , I remember my yoga again .this year I do not even have a phone I have to go out to Mums to call anyone and its just fine with me . 
So I am hopeful , no I don't think we can go totally without electronics but I sure know we can cut back and go without several items . I am really hoping that the old rotary dial telephones work out in the country as in the city we can't use them at all anymore . 

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