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How 2020 changed the way we recycle

How 2020 changed the way we recycle

A collective shift that changed the world.

By:

Nadine |
August 15, 2021

Do you remember those first few weeks when COVID hit the world? It was a scary and uncertain time, but something else also happened. The world took a collective breath and stayed home from work, holidays, and everything else. We slowed down and started to see nature take back the world.

Mother Nature Returns
Mother Nature Returns
Across the globe, mother nature started to take back the earth. Deer wandered into downtown neighbourhoods, smog dissipated from city skylines, and sea turtles returned to city shorelines for the first time in years. These occurrences, which seem like phenomena to so many of us, were a natural way that the earth would and could have been if humans had taken more time to protect it.

By collectively getting the chance to see these beautiful moments in nature, we also had a collective shift in thinking. The consensus was; if this is what can happen in a matter of weeks, what could we do if we all worked together to protect the planet? It was undeniably clear that if each of us took small actions to reduce our environmental impact, we could help slow global warming and preserve the earth for generations to come.

In 2020 many of us thought the lockdowns would be temporary. Remember when we thought it’d be two weeks? Lol…we were in for a surprise. Yet, once again, society took what could have been a negative and made the most of it. While many of us learned new skills and practiced our hobbies, something else was happening. By being made to stay home, many people found they had more time on their hands, and with this, more people were taking the time to sort their recyclables and teach their families how to do the same.

Family Garden Composting
Family Garden Composting
Parents were showing their children how their small actions could help protect the planet. Many families started composting and found they finally had the time to tend to their gardens. More homegrown tomatoes and loaves of fresh sourdough were consumers in the summer of 2020 than in many decades. Mother nature’s miraculous bounce back in March 2020 inspired a movement, and more families than ever slowed down and took the time to learn how not only to recycle but how to live more sustainably. Through these small changes, we also saw another significant shift in thinking. Here in BC, our communities rallied to support each other through a movement to shop local.
Shopping local and shopping sustainably
Shopping local and shopping sustainably
Shopping local and shopping sustainably became a focus as we’d never seen before. Companies advertised their recyclable containers, locally sourced products, and dedication to environmental stewardship. Choosing to order anything and everything off of Amazon was no longer the norm. In fact, it was frowned upon by many. Instagram feeds filled up with upcycled home projects, and people were proud to show the world that they hadn’t run out and bought the latest and greatest.

2020 brought about a significant shift in thinking that has carried into 2021. We, as a society, have learned not to take our freedoms and planet so easily for granted. This change has spilled over into all aspects of our lives such as how we cook, shop, and recycle. As we move forward, we seem to be leaving behind the negatives and holding onto the positive changes like more family time, environmental responsibility and supporting our communities.

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