Neomi is ready for the summer- I could not resist and bought her this cute red hut with the white dots...
As most of you probably already know- I grew up in Switzerland. I spent my first 26 years there until I moved to Israel.
For me it was the most natural thing to:
- have a compost
- to separate waste- collect paper, cardboard, glass, tins, plastic bottles, electronic waste...
- to not just throw garbage on the ground and always leave a place clean and tidy
- to go shopping with a shopping-bag
- to mostly walk or use my bike or public transportation to get around
- to collect the rainwater from the roof to irrigate the garden in summer
- to buy seasonal products
- to buy products from the region if possible
- to buy environmental friendly soaps and detergents
(I could go on...)
I grew up in a family that is very conscious about environmental issues. We had a small vegetable garden and used the car very little (for a few years we did not even have a car).
Coming to Israel was a huge step back for me. Only in the last few years Israel is waking up and things are starting to move. There's still a lot to do.
I came to a conclusion that many things are also a luxury for richer folks. I would love to buy organic products- but they are hard to find here and mostly much more expensive. And to drive with the car half an hour or more just to buy something organic seems contradictory to me.
I would love to buy sometimes products for the house and garden with a long life time but cheap plastic seems to rule the world these days and everything else is hard to find and very expensive.
When I went shopping here only some 4 years ago with my fabric shopping bag, people were a bit amused. They packed their stuff in tons of plastic bags. This changed and today a lot of people have their personal shopping bag ready. In the last years people also started to collect paper, plastic bottles and glass. Slowly, slowly awareness about environmental issues is growing.
Still- too many people drive too many cars- the public transportation is terrible (except for the bigger cities). Biking became a very trendy sport but is not really considered a way of transportation (except maybe in the Kibbutz). People buy usually a huge amount of food and I am sure that also a lot of this is going to waste. There's mostly no way to know where vegetables, fruits and meat come from. Eggs and milk are also mainly produced in a large style- no free range chickens here... And wherever you go people leave their garbage- it looks especially bad after holidays with huge amounts of one-way-plates and cups. People in the Kibbutz are much more aware of this in general and not everyone leaves his garbage of course... seems to be a lot of time a question of cultural and social background.
And maybe it's better that I don't know the state the industrial sector is in...
I myself try to do the best I can, teach my kids and make people in my surrounding more aware. I also know that I could do more...