Spring is here ... and what does Spring always bring back into focus for us Pigeons? Nature! However, this year in the midst of a global pandemic, we’ve all had to adapt and interact with nature a little bit differently. For me in a stage 4 lockdown Melbourne, I have spent more time outdoors in my own neighbourhood than ever before (hi bubble life).
Right now, my lockdown looks like daily scoots on my bike to the local milk bar, walks along the creek at dusk and running up and down hills in nearby streets. Not so bad when I think about it like that... I guess the upside to all this is I am able to see the subtle changes in nature that are close at hand. New buds on trees on the verge of my street. The swelling of Merri Creek after heavy rains upstream. Visiting bees in my backyard. All these little observations I have been blind to before, but now have the all the time to cherish.
Unfortunately there is also some sadness that creeps into these observations … mainly how much unnecessary litter and waste there is in our streets gutters, along walking paths and in waterways. Recent upturn in community awareness around plastic waste has allowed for more conversations and opportunity for steps to reduce waste, but sometimes this doesn’t pass the eye test of seeing waste in the street.
This potential increase in time in our own neighbourhoods and community can be a great opportunity to make multiple changes that directly impact where we live. For example, a group of neighbours on my street recently spent time over the weekend taking turns to walk along a nearby water way and filled up 10+ bags of rubbish and litter. And unsurprising the majority of this was day to day waste related to people’s consumption of food and drink.
What can we do to possibly reduce this waste in our own neighbourhoods? A simple step is to invest a small amount of time and energy in bringing products towards us that are reusable and if possible plastic free. The big ticket items that we should all invest in to help reduce waste (in landfill and litter) are important in not only developing an awareness of the amount of waste we produce, but also in beginning to cultivate a practice of sustainability.
Switching to reusable coffee cups, food containers and carry bags is a simple and small step towards reducing our individual waste and our broader community waste. This is one way we can have a direct impact on our understanding of how we impact the natural world around us.
- Rolly, a Melbourne Pigeon in lockdown
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