Plastic Purge by Michael SanClements

I have read many books on how to live a more environmentally friendly lifestyle. But most of them make such extreme recommendations that I end up morphing into a belligerent teenager while reading them. Mid-way through the book I start thinking, You won't ever let me have any fun at all. You're the meanest author ever. 

So I started reading Plastic Purge with some trepidation. But I quickly realized that the author is the Mike Brady of environmentalists. He wants what's best for us and he's gently encouraging us to do the right thing. But he's also very understanding when we fall short of the mark.

The other thing I like about this author is that he's realistic about the modern world we live in. He admits that it's not possible to remove all plastic from our lives, and even points out that there are some ways that plastic is necessary (IV tubing, for instance.) It was a refreshing bit of honesty in a genre that generally likes to pretend like it's possible to teleport ourselves back to a time when living a toxin-free life was doable. This level of honesty made me trust the authors advice even more. But then, who wouldn't trust Mike Brady.

The book also contains a rating system to help us gently ease into removing plastic from our lives, from one bottle for the things that are easiest to implement, up to three bottles for the hardest things. Usually when I read a book on this subject, this is the part of the book where I begin to feel like the whole thing is hopeless - there's too much to remove, removing it will be too expensive and will require a level of vigilance that will consume my every waking moment. As much as I care about the environment, I have other things going on in my life that have to be attended to as well. I have a job to go to and episodes of Golden Girls to watch. I need a plan that's manageable. But armed with the authors 3 bottle system, I was able to easily tackle removing a lot of plastic from my life.

To be continued . . .

Join us next time for another episode of As The Environmentally-Friendly World Turns. Did I have trouble implementing the authors suggestions? Was I able to implement them and still have time left over to waste and looking up my high school classmates to see if I'm aging better than them? Was I able to remove plastic from my life without driving everyone around me insane? Tune in next time for the dramatic conclusion.


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