VOICE IN THE WILDERNESS

WHEN I started blogging in March it was as a means to document small creative moments in my life. I have a family of busy, active teens, wo...


WHEN I started blogging in March it was as a means to document small creative moments in my life. I have a family of busy, active teens, work fulltime, volunteer in my community as a Girl Guide leader and maintain a house and garden. I’m not complaining, this is the life of so many other people and we are a healthy, happy family. Sure there’s ups and downs, but they’re just the stuff of life. Yeah?

But today I will deviate ever so slightly from the op shopping, crafting, cooking and other small creative moments I manage to find in my days.

I’ve pondered this picture taken while bush walking on Sunday. The reserve we walked on was a magic space. It had all sorts of vegetation and topography. A small stream, cliff overhangs and beautiful flora and fauna. However, dumped right in the middle of the reserve was the mess pictured above.

I guess I am probably preaching to the converted, but this is disturbing? Yeah? The site from where the rubbish was dumped can be accessed by a tarred road. It was dropped over a cliff that is a lookout east to the sea. From that same lookout was where we saw a peregrine falcon.

Why is it people feel they have the right to just dump this stuff? It must be done under cover of darkness, or at a time they won’t be caught doing it. Right? So they have a conscious. They know it’s wrong. Right? But they still do it.

Do they know, for instance, that in the same reserve they’ve dumped their office and household waste there are two magnificent strangler figs. The one below is wrapped around a massive boulder.


The one below was once wrapped around a fallen log. The log has rotted away to leave this lattice work.


In 1989 the Federal Government released a publication called the Personal Action Guide for the Earth. I am pretty sure it’s no longer in print. I bought it aged 15 and would still count it in my list of Top 10 favourite books.

I am an average greenie. We recycle. I am thrifty. I can’t abide overly packaged product. I try to shop for Australian-made goods and the fewer kilometres they’ve travelled to me, the better. I compost. I ride and walk where possible and practical. I live in a small house and try to heat and cool it naturally. We have no airconditioner, no dishwasher, a small television and as few electronic appliances as possible. We’re not sack cloth and ashes greenies, but we try.

The Personal Action Guide for the Earth lists things individuals can do to reduce their impact on Planet Earth.

I checked, and now I can see why people think it’s OK to throw rubbish over a cliff. Quite clearly, the authors of The Personal Action Guide for the Earth failed to realise people are STUPID and didn’t think to mention it. Well, der! Or maybe the dumpers read the bit where it said to "separate the rubbish" and thought it meant packing up the rubbish and taking it as far from the other waste as possible – say the bottom of a cliff in the middle of a bushland reserve.

Come on people. It’s time to tell the tossers what we think of them. For me, I am writing to the council that operates the reserve and alerting them to the mess. Also, in March, I will sign up for Clean Up Australia Day. Is there such a thing as a blogger movement to clean up their patch? If not, I’m starting one. Pip, do you think your walkers would commit to picking up rubbish on their walks? Anyone else? Any ideas? It’s been a bit of a rant. Sorry. It’s important though. Really, really important.

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11 comments

  1. I saw something that made me cross and upset the other day in my neighbourhood. Someone had dumped an old mattress and couch out side some buildings where people work which sits on the edge of the gorgeous Merri Creek. Yes, indeed, why do people feel it's ok to just dump stuff and not take responsibility for where their crap ends up? Or just buy less crap in the first place?

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  2. I agree this is really important. So sad to see that dump in such a beautiful reserve. Littering has always bugged me I just don't understand why people do it! I grew up in rural victoria and have a love for nature and the land. I remember as a kid there was always a lot of rubbish on the sides of the road on long trips from town to town or dirt roads through the bush. The disrespect for the plant was rife. Im happy to say things have improved over the years but still not 100%...I try to make an effort to pick up litter in my path and let those around me know its not on if I catch them doing it! Good luck with your letter to the council. Also, where is this amazing reserve? Those strangler figs are incredible, I would love to visit it one day if ever in the area?

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  3. I completely agree with your rant. Some people are just stupid. The biggest thing that annoys me are groups of smokers who think its fine to drop their cigarette butts all over the place. They don't break down, they're washed into stormwater drains that end up in the ocean...grrrr

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  4. right-on girlie! i'm off to pick up the rogue cigarette butt I just spotted out the window!
    xx

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  5. so true....maybe people think if they don't see it it's not really there - so they dump it out of (their own) view.
    We took some old carpet to the dump on the weekend and it was hardly the highlight of the weekend yet it dawned on me that we were actually supporting a small business...

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  6. I dont think you were ranting - just telling it how it is, sadly some people really are stupid and uncaring. I am forever picking up rubbish dumped in my local playground - how hard is it to dispose of it responsibly - it does my head in to see my little one pick up some crappy piece of rubbish and if I dont catch her in time, see it go into her mouth. Ooops now I think I am ranting.

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  7. Great post, I live near bushland and grew up with the bush as my backyard. It's a real shame that some people just aren't human.
    I'm sure that council will quickly clean up the mess but that's not the point is it.

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  8. That is terrible. I am going to try and pick up any rubbish I see.

    p.s the strangler figs are amazing.
    xx

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  9. Bloody hell, who would do this!!!??? Sometimes I wonder if all humans are part of the same species, I just can't fathom being able to do such a horrible selfish act and I don't know anyone who could either. Who ARE these people????

    I was almost beat-up by a fully grown man once because I told him to pick up the rubbish he'd just dropped at his side while walking along the street (less than 5 meters away from a bin!). Idiot!

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  10. I am in awe at how passionately people feel about their environments and the small actions we're all doing to make out patch a better place to live in.

    Mizu Designs, I hope someone who needs that mattress comes along and claims it to set the recycle wheel spinning and to negate the dumper's bad karma.

    Handmade Romance, the reserve is called Kantara Reserve and is in the Gosford Council area. I believe there is information about it on the council's website.

    Curlypops and Nanette, cigarettes are a big issue. A lot of our summer bushfires are started by people throwing still lit butts out of car windows.

    Bird Bath, too true. And what treasures those businesses are reclaiming and sending back out to new homes through their own "thrift stores" and auction sales.

    Eileeboo, these people ARE selfish and have no regard for anyone else. I agree.

    Mel Bomba, I'd rather we had our resources spent on something else. You're right, the point is that it's everyone's problem and everyone's responsibilty.

    .girl ferment., they are amazing and yah for you.

    Flossy-p, you are one brave ecowarrior. Let them hear you roar.

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  11. Ohhh that makes me mad too - i know its a small minority of dumb ass people who would do this and there are fines in place but are they ever enforced? probably not - pathetic...!

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