Editor's Note: Happy Earth Day

Mary Sweeten, Editor, Weavers Way Shuttle

I was thinking of doing an Earth Day/Week/Month roundup in this Shuttle, which kind of fell through, but now I realize that the paper is actually stuffed with environmental stories.

There is a cool Earth Day film festival taking shape. Folks want you to walk to tell PECO to adopt more solar. We’re still jamming little bits of trash into soda bottles for a garden project at MLK High School and collecting plastic lids for a mural to decorate it and if that doesn’t show environmentalists have a sense of humor, I don’t know what.

Speaking of stuffed, the paper you hold in your hands may include the Co-op’s annual report. (We only put them in the mailed copies, so if you grabbed a Shuttle from the store or out in the wild, you can get the report from the Membership office.) This document has come out in varying forms over the years, but always includes a section titled “Environment,” which, despite that overarching theme, Norman Weiss always uses to focus on one of his hobby-horses: single-use packaging. As he says in his Suggestion column this month: “My own opinion is that no single-use manufactured item is environmentally sound.”

As it happens, Environment Committee chair Sandra Folzer has a column about a certain single-use product — toilet paper, and about our use of personal paper in general. As someone who used to work in an elementary school, I can’t endorse Sandy’s enthusiasm for cloth handkerchiefs, but we all do need to take responsibility for our own waste streams.

Speaking of waste streams, another Environment Committee member has a story about the relative environmental burdens of cat litter brands; Ellen Nulf has included some ideas for making your own, using old newspapers. Ellen, I love ya, but hardly anybody reads the paper anymore.

Which brings me back to the paper you hold in your hands. Yes, it’s an anachronism, a contradiction in terms, a consumer of resources and a source of solid waste. But please support our advertisers! And a Happy Earth Day to you all.