Thursday, September 23, 2004

Thinking about incentives....

The Log Cabin is full of 'ideas' tonight. CBC radio one at 9pm. The program is a little grim this evening. "Green if necessary" it's been called. They are discussing how crisis effects social change and if our environmental crisis can change values and behaviours. Joseph Heath, a philosophy professor suggests not, and that behaviours will only change if there are incentives that affect people as consumers. Such as water meters. Apartently when water meters are installed in neighbourhoods water usage is reduced by 45%. Another example, gas tax. People may feel guilty about driving into town but they'll still do it unless it's very expensive to drive.

Doomsday enviromentalists mean well, but who wants to put effort into saving something that's already beyond saving? I suppose a little optimism wouldn't hurt. Throw in some incentives and maybe we can save the world.

A few incentives I've happened upon in the north...

Water. We don't have running water. We have a large tank that sits in the corner of the cabin which we draw water from. We were told that we would probably go through one tank per month...wouldn't you know, two weeks in and we're through the tank. It's not fun filling the tank. Incentive.

Garbage. At Raven Recycling you can recycle EVERYTHING and they some how make it fun. Tetra packs, egg crates, plastic bags, all different types of paper and it's so easy. Everything is labled and the big bins make it simple to be rid of. Our garbage is down to two small bags a month. I guess when you don't have a garbage truck that comes to your house, and you have to lose your own trash at the community dump there's a little more incentive to recycle.


Blogger Trena Rae said...

I like the idea of incentives. In Toronto, they seem to encourage wasteful behaviour through the lack of incentives. Example: each household can put out SIX bags of garbage a week. My God. So where's the incentive to cut down on your waste creation? They should allow only two bags per house and make you pay extra for every additional bag you put out.

Thankfully they're starting a curb-side compost pickup service in October.

3:07 p.m.  

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