Monthly Archives: April 2013

Random Take on Development #2

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Common Measures…

A common (and legitimate) measure of development is how much of the things we need, we have.  Non-corrupt government.  Safe roads.  Clean water.  Medical facilities etc.  I think the amount of useless stuff we are surrounded by also tells a lot.  The more developed a country is, the more useless products they try to sell.  Seriously, who needs this?  What else are we told to consume in the name of boosting our GDP?

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Random thoughts on development #1

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Despite it all…

Despite all of the crimes, wars, environmental destruction, racism and gender inequality that we always hear about, the more I travel the world, the more I realize that this world is full of intelligent, peace-loving, love-loving people.  It’s just the few at the top that ruin it all for everyone.  But that’s probably the way it’s always been.  From before ancient Egypt, through the middle ages of Europe, and now.  Things never change.  Will they ever?  Is this the real meaning of development?

Another Sri Lankan First

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今日はスリランカにて初残業!普段は事務所自体が16:15分に鍵かけられてしまうので帰らないと行けない。でも今日はランカの報道局ヒルTVが来て腎臓病の活動について取材した。スリランカでテレビ見れる方、ヒルTVの7時のニュース見てみてね。
මට රූපවාහින නැතිනිසා බරන්න බැහැ (කඳුළු)

Ants are amazing…

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More Sri Lankan animal videos.  At anytime, I can count up to 3 different types of ants marching around somewhere in my house.  These little guys are always around.  I think they’ve actually made a colony inside the walls.  Disclaimer: the video may be a bit gross, but still pretty cool!

スリランカのアリ。大体部屋に3種類くらいのアリがいる。大きい噛まれたら痛そうなやつからちぃぃさいやつまで。この子たちは小っちゃい方。動画、ちょっと気持ち悪いかもけど、やっぱすごい!

Garbage Patch

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Why am I showing you a picture of a bag of trash?

This is my garbage out put for 20 days!  It’s mostly yogurt cups, juice concentrate bottles (glass) and some plastic bags  and paper.

Of course when I first moved here, I had lots more garbage.  Buying new things, not knowing which things had more unnecessary packing than others, buying the wrong things etc all created waste.  But over time, as I got more accustomed to life in Sri Lanka and the things that are sold here, I was able to slowly reduce my garbage output.  It took 6 months, but this is what nearly 3 weeks worth of garbage for me in Sri Lanka looks likes.

Major contributors of volume reduction were

1) I learned to compose.   I got a pretty resilient compose bag now that can take most any kitchen scraps.

2) I learned how quickly things go bad.  At first I didn’t know, at it was quite different from Japan or the states, so a lot of food went bad before I could use it.  Now, I can plan according to how long things last and which foods go with what so I waste almost nothing!

3) I learned to avoid excessive packaging.  Even though you don’t eat or use useless packaging, you still pay for it.  Avoid it to save money, and the environment.

If you think about it, the only thing you actually by anew every single day is food.  Buy eggs in paper cartons, not plastic if you have the choice.  Don’t buy water if you don’t have to.  Buying smaller portions might reduce waste, but may increase packaging…that’s a tough one.  The point is, just pay attention to what you are buying.  Not just the product itself, but what it comes wrapped in and how you will dispose of it all when done.  It’ll go a long way in reducing waste.

なぜゴミ袋を。。。

これは僕の20日分のゴミ。内容は大体ヨーグルト容器、濃縮ジュースの瓶、ビニール袋、紙など。

もちろん、到着直後はもっと多かった。新しいもの買ったり、不要包装品買っちゃったり、間違えて違う物を買っちゃったり、色んなムダをしていた。けど、生活に慣れれば慣れるほど、ゴミを減らすことも出来た。半年かかったが、役3週間のゴミをここまで減らすことができた。

ゴミの減らし方

1) コンポースト:生ごみはほとんどコンポーストに。ゴミの量を減らし、後で土に使える。

2) 食品の足の速さ:物がちがければ腐る早さも違った。最初は知らなくて結構ムダにしてた。それに慣れちゃってた部分もあったかな。でも今はどれくらい持つかとか、何と何がどの料理に使えるかなど分かって来たので食品のムダはほぼなくなった。

3) 包装を避ける:食べないし、使うもしないけど、お金はかかってる。避けて財布も環境も守る。

毎日新しく買う物って、食べ物位じゃない?卵はプラじゃなくて紙カートンのやつ買ったり、水は水道水使ったりだけでかなりな量をセーブ出来た。少量で買えば食品のムダは減るが包装は増えるかな?ここはちょっと難しい?言いたいことは、買い物の時に買う物の包装や使い終わった後の処理のことをちょっとだけ気に掛けるだけでここまで減らせた。